The Atlantic tarpon (Megalops atlanticus) also known as the silver king, Cuffum fish, Madzorfloe,
Angola, Anguilla, Antigua, Aruba, Azores Is. Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Bermuda, Br Virgin Is. Brazil, Cameroon, Canada, Canary Is. Cape Verde, Cayman Is. Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Curaçao I. Dominica, Dominican Rp, Eq Guinea, Fr Guiana, France, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guinea, GuineaBissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Liberia, Madeira Is. Martinique, Mauritania, Mexico, Montserrat, NethAntilles, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Panama, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Saint Lucia, Sao Tome, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain, St Kitts, St Vincent, Suriname, Togo, Trinidad, Turks Caicos, UK, UK No Ireld, US Virgin Is. USA, Venezuela
Inhabits coastal waters, estuaries, lagoons, rivers, brackish seas, mangroves, river mouths and bays, entering freshwater, coastal structures. Tarpons prefer water temperatures of 72 to 82°F (22°C to 27°C), below 60°F (16°C) they become inactive, and temperatures under 40°F (4°C) can be lethal
No dorsal spines , between 13-16 dorsal soft rays, no anal spines, 22 - 25 anal soft rays, dorsal fin with short base at mid length of the body. Anal fin with longer base, the level of the dorsal fin normally equal to that of the origin of lower end. Pectorals origin very low. Scales of the lateral line have branched out tubes. Blue gray back, shiny silvery sides. Swim bladder attached to gullet and can be filled directly with air, this feature enables this species to live in oxygen-poor waters, between 37-42 scales in lateral line area, last ray extended as heavy filament. In appearance, a tarpon is greenish or bluish on top and silver on the sides. The large mouth is turned upwards and the lower jaw contains an elongated, bony plate. The last ray of the dorsal fin is much longer than the others, reaching nearly to the tail.
The tarpon feeds almost exclusively on schooling fish ,Silver sides, mullet, anchovies, herring and occasionally crabs, prawns and shrimp
Hook set is difficult due to the hard mouth of the fish, which has been likened to the hardness of concrete, so many tarpons throw the hook on the first few jump, artificial lures, mimic's, salt water flies and live bait are the favoured techniques, normally very skittish towards shadows and water disturbances around them, depending on the moon phase, tide and time
The flesh is undesirable, bony and cases of ciguatera poisoning have been reported from this fish
Spawns at sea, larvae migrate inland and are leptocephalic (flattened, transparent and eel-like) April to march,Colombia Caribbean Coast, June to August USA Eastern Gulf of Mexico Florida, June to August Gulf of Mexico Yucatan Channel, spawns at sea, Scientific studies indicate schools have routinely migrated through the Panama Canal from the Atlantic to the Pacific and back for over 70 years
The Indo-Pacific tarpon or oxeye (Megalops cyprinoides)
Amer Samoa, Andaman Is. Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China Main, Djibouti, East Timor, Egypt,n Eritrea, Fiji, Fr Polynesia, Guam, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Korea, Korea Rep, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Micronesia, Mozambique, Myanmar, N Marianas, New Caledonia, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Papua N Guin, Philippines, Reunion, Rodriguez, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Tonga, Vanuatu, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zimbabwe
The Indo-Pacific tarpon migrates between the open sea and inland rivers, inhabits tropical coastal and brackish waters of the Indo-Pacific oceans, Sea, Bay, Gulf, River Basins, Lakes, Lagoons, Commonly found all year round in the eastern waters around Australia, Ethiopia, Asia,
No dorsal spines, 16-21 dorsal soft rays, no anal spines, 23 - 31 anal soft rays. Lower jaw projects beyond snout; a bony gular plate present between the jaw bones. Last fin ray of dorsal long and has a filamentous tip, ventrally located pectoral fins, abdominal pelvic fins with 9 or more rays. Color blue-green dorsally; silvery on sides. Can tolerate oxygen-poor water by `breathing' air into a lung-like air bladder.like the Megalops atlanticus, olive-green on top, silvery on the sides. The large mouth is turned upwards, the lower jaw contains an elongated, bony plate. The last ray of the dorsal fin is much longer than the others, reaching nearly to the tail.
Adults are strictly carnivorous and feed on midwater prey; swallowing their food whole they hunt nocturnally, flies insects (freshwater), stink bugs (freshwater), dragon flies (freshwater), termites (freshwater), freshwater shrimp.
Method of Catching
artificial lures, salt water flies, live bait ,dead bait (night fishing) generally takes bait on the way down when using a weight
Edible but disliked
Unlike the barramundi, they are able to breed in freshwater and saltwater. As with all Elopiformes, it spawns at sea, the larvae migrate inland and are leptocephalic (flattened, transparent and eel-like) Tarpons breed offshore in warm, isolated areas. Females have high fecundity and can lay up to 12 million eggs at once. They reach sexual maturity once they are about 75–125 cm in length.
Adults occasionally fall prey to sharks, porpoises, alligators, and piscivorous birds. They are especially vulnerable to birds when they come to the surface for air, due to the rolling manner in which they move to take in air, as well as the mirror silver scales, lining catches the sunlight.