Rock ling live around caves and rocky areas right around the coast of Tasmania down to 60 metres. Juveniles may be found in estuaries around seagrass beds. They are caught over sandy areas around wharves and jetties at night when they leave their caves to hunt for food.
Taken by spearfishers or caught as bycatch when they take fish or squid baits aimed at other bottom dwelling fish. They give a reasonable fight given their body shape and size and have strong runs when hooked. Occasionally taken in nets, longlines or rock lobster pots as bycatch. May occasionally be caught off wharves and jetties at night. Use bait such as fish flesh and squid and large hooks and strong trace.
The jaws are very powerful and they will bite down on a hand and twist their body vigorously.
These fish are excellent eating and can be cooked in similar ways to pink ling to which they are closely related. The head contains plenty of meat and can form the basis of an excellent fish head soup.