Trumpeters are a family of perciform fishes, Latridae. They are found in southern waters of New Zealand, with the Bay of Plenty being about their northern limit. They are more abundant along the east and southern coasts of the South Islandand are usually encountered in small numbers.
The striped trumpeter is an elongated, flattened yellowish-green fish however its most striking feature is of course its brilliant colour scheme. Three horizontal stripes running along its sides make the trumpeter immediately recognisable. These stripes are bright olive-green but quickly fade following capture. The fins and tail are yellow to grey. It can also be quite bronze or brown in colour with a tinge of gold and is it is a very pretty fish to look at. It has a distinctive mouth – reminiscent of the puckered lips of a trumpet player. The outline of the trumpeter closely resembles that of the blue moki to which it is related. Indeed these two species share much the same habitat and eat much the same prey.
AGE & GROWTH
They are reported to grow to 1.2m and can live for about 30 years. The biggest reported weight has been 25kg. Females reach maturity at around 45cm or five years old, while males reach maturity at around 53cm or eight years old.
These warm water neritic-pelagic fish generally spawn in offshore, coastal waters where they can remain for up to nine months before metamorphosing into the juvenile stage.
Spawning apparently occurs offshore and Individuals can remain in this neritic-pelagic phase for up to 9 months after hatching before metamorphosis into the juvenile stage takes place
HABITAT & FEEDING
Found in good numbers on the east coast of the South Island especially around the temperate waters near Kaikoura. Often deeper than 20m but in the right location, they can be seen near the surface at around five metres. Their diet consists of crabs, shrimps, mussels, squid, octopus and small fish.
A great table fish which can be cooked in a variety of ways – similar to John Dory. They have white, moist, medium to thick flakes and their fillets have good omega-3 levels.