Wild Shellfish Alert - Do not eat wild shellfish from areas in and around Spring Bay and the Mercury Passage in South East Tasmania.
Most scalefish are measured from the nose to the end of the tail. Get your scalefish measuring ruler or sticker at any Service Tasmania outlet.
gurnard, gurnet, ruddy gurnard
The common gurnard perch is characterised by an orange grey body with a whiter belly, three irregular broad saddle-like bands and small head spines. The fin colouration mimics the body colour. Gurnards have rough scales and hard sharp bony plates around the gill covers. Their eyes are large and they have very sharp, poisonous spines.
Use a dehooker or pliers to remove hook or cut the line and release the fish alive over the water without landing or handling.Handling: Be careful of poisonous spines which can inflict a painful sting. Poison glands are found at the base of the dorsal, anal and ventral fin spines. If you are spiked, wash the affected area with warm water to help de-nature the toxins. Seek medical advice if symptoms persist.
The common gurnard perch lives over sand and hard bottom from 2-100 metres depth.
Commonly caught while fishing for flathead over sand but may also be encountered over rocky reef. This species is abundant in Tasmania.
Be careful of poisonous spines which can inflict a painful sting. Poison glands are found at the base of the dorsal, anal and ventral fin spines. If you are spiked, wash the affected area with warm water to help de-nature the toxins. Seek medical advice if symptoms persist.
Gurnard flesh is white, firm and good eating when filleted and skinned. It has a medium flavour with low oil content. Suitable to bake, barbecue, shallow or deep fry, foil bake, grill, poach or steam. When preparing gurnard carefully cut off all the spines using kitchen scissors.
Recipe: Oven Baked Gurnard:
1 whole gurnard, gilled, scaled and gutted, head may be removed; 1 small onion, sliced; 1 clove of garlic, diced; 1 lemon, one half quartered, the other sliced; 2 small tomatoes, quartered; bay leaf (optional); pepper; 1 tbsp of butter ; 1 tbsp of olive oil or butter for cooking.
Place all ingredients except the slices of lemon slices, butter and pepper in the gut cavity. Slightly score the fish along the back and spread butter with lemon slices along the back of the fish. Wrap in foil or place in baking dish in an oven at 180 degrees for about 20-30 minutes.
This is a great way of utilising a fish that tends not to be favoured by many Tasmanian recreational fishers. Baking these fish makes it very easy to peel off the cooked fillet with a flat spatula and they are very tasty.
Level 3, 134 Macquarie St
Hobart TAS 7000
Phone: (03) 6165 3233, 1300 720 647
GPO Box 44
Phone: (03) 6165 3000, 1300 368 550