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Trachurus murphyi Nichols, 1920
Oceanic Peruvian Jack Mackerel; Trachurus symmetricus murphyi Nichols, 1920; Inca Scad

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Trachurus murphyi
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Trachurus murphyi

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Main identification features
  • large spiny scales entire lateral line
  • curved part ll: height spines greater than 60 percent eye
Inca Scad

Large fatty eyelid covers rear half of eye; dorsal fin VIII + I, 30-36, without finlet behind; anal fin with II isolated spines followed by I, 27-31; lateral line with extension along top of back under dorsal fins; pectoral fin long, reaching past origin of anal fin; scales along entire length of lateral line forming large spiny scutes, those on curved part of the lateral line relatively large (61-85% of eye diameter); body long and slender, slightly compressed.

Back and top of head metallic blue to dark grey; lower body whitish to pale grey; a black spot at the upper edge of the gill cover.

Size: reaches 70 cm, common to 45 cm.

Habitat: an inshore pelagic species.

Depth: 10-300 m.

Southern Ecuador to Peru, Galapagos and Malpelo. Also occurs in New Zealand.

T. symmetricus, which occurs from California to the Gulf of California, is the sister species of T. murphyi. T. symmetricus has smaller scutes (height = 25-44% of eye diameter) on the curved part of the lateral line than does T. murphyi. A recent study by Stepien + Rosenblatt (1996) indicates that are ongoing genetic connections between these two populations.

Abundance: Common.
Cites: Not listed.
Climate Zone: Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo); South Temperate (Peruvian Province ).
Depth Range Max: 300 m.
Depth Range Min: 10 m.
Diet: zooplankton; bony fishes; Pelagic crustacea; pelagic fish larvae; pelagic fish eggs.
Eastern Pacific Range: Northern limit=5; Southern limit=-9; Western limit=-93; Eastern limit=-79; Latitudinal range=14; Longitudinal range=14.
Egg Type: Pelagic; Pelagic larva.
Feeding Group: Carnivore.
FishBase Habitat: Pelagic.
Global Endemism: TEP non-endemic; West + East Pacific (but not Central); "Transpacific" (East + Central &/or West Pacific); All species.
Habitat: Water column.
Inshore Offshore: Inshore; Inshore Only.
IUCN Red List: Not evaluated / Listed.
Length Max: 70 cm.
Regional Endemism: Island (s); Continent; Continent + Island (s); Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) non-endemic; Eastern Pacific non-endemic; Peruvian province, primarily; Temperate Eastern Pacific, primarily; All species.
Residency: Resident.
Salinity: Marine; Marine Only.
Water Column Position: Mid Water; Near Surface; Water column only;

Scientific source:

Links to other sites

  • BÚarez, P., 1996., Lista de los Peces Marinos del Ecuador Continental., Revista de Biologia Tropical, 44:731-741.
  • Cßrdenas, L., Hernßndez, CE., Poulin, E., Magoulas, A., Kornfield, I., Ojeda, F.P., 2005., Origin, diversification, and historical biogeography of the genus \., .
  • Fischer , W. , Krup , F. , Schneider , W. , Sommer , C. , Carpenter , K. E. and Niem, V. H., 1995., Guia FAO para la Identificacion de Especies de para los fines de la Pesca. Pacifico Centro-Oriental. Volumen II. Vertebrados - Parte 1., FAO2:647-1200.
  • Hildebrand, S.F., 1946., A descriptive catalog of the shore fishes of Peru., Bull. U.S. Nat. Mus., 189:1-530.
  • Jimenez-Prado, P., BÚarez, P., 2004., Peces marinos del Ecuador continental / Marine fishes of continental Ecuador., SIMBIOE/NAZCA/IFEA tomo 1 y 2.
  • Kawahara , S. , Uozumiand , Y. and Yamada, H., 1988., First record of a carangid fish, Trachurus murphyi from New Zealand., Japanese J. Ichthyol., 35:212-214.
  • Nichols, J.T., 1920., A key to the species of Trachurus., Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist., 42:477-481.
  • Stepien , C.A. and Rosenblatt, R.H., 1996., Genetic divergence in antitropical pelagic marine fishes (Trachurus, Merluccius, and Scomber) between North and South America., Copeia, 1996:586-598.


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Following modified from Australian Faunal Directory
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Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts

Australian Biological Resources Study

Australian Faunal Directory

You are here:  Environment home » Biodiversity » ABRS » AFD » ANIMALIA (Kingdom) » CHORDATA (Phylum) » VERTEBRATA (Subphylum) » GNATHOSTOMATA (Higher Taxon) » PISCES (Higher Taxon) » ACTINOPTERYGII (Class) » EUTELEOSTEI (Subdivision) » ACANTHOPTERYGII (Superorder) » PERCIFORMES (Order) » PERCOIDEI (Suborder) » CARANGIDAE (Family) » Trachurus Rafinesque, 1810 (Genus) » Trachurus murphyi Nichols, 1920

Species Trachurus murphyi Nichols, 1920


Regional Maps

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CAAB : 37337077 Taxon concept Trachurus_murphyi last modified 2013-10-31 17:29:37.129

Species Trachurus murphyi Nichols, 1920

Peruvian Jack Mackerel , Oceanic Peruvian Jack Mackerel


Generic Combinations




New South Wales, Tasmania, Victoria

Extra Distribution Information

Off Green Cape, NSW (37┬║25'S) to south-west of Portland, VIC (141┬║05┬┤E) and TAS (44┬║19'S); temperate, South Pacific.

IBRA and IMCRA regions (map not available)


Tasmania Province (10), Western Bass Strait Shelf Transition (34), Bass Strait Shelf Province (35), Tasmanian Shelf Province (36), Southeast Shelf Transition (37)

Ecological Descriptors

Continental shelf, inshore, marine, pelagic, schooling.


General References

Elizarov, A.A., Grechina, A.A., Kotenev, B.N. & Kuzetsov, A.N. 1993. Peruvian jack mackerel, Trachurus symmetricus murphyi in open waters in the south Pacific. Journal of Ichthyology 33 (3): 86-104 [originally published in Voprosky ikhtiologii 32(6), 1992: 57ÔÇô73] [86]

Pullen, G. Williams, H. & Last, P. 1989. South American fish found off Tasmania. Australian Fisheries 48 (6): 35 [35]

Smith-Vaniz, W.F. 2008. Family Carangidae. pp. 575-581 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast . Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp. [581]

Yearsley, G.K., Last, P.R. & Ward, R.D. (eds) 1999. Australian Seafood Handbook . Hobart : CSIRO Marine Research 460 pp. [267]


Common Name References

Seafood Services Australia 2008. Australian Fish Names Standard. ( Peruvian Jack Mackerel )

Yearsley, G.K., Last, P.R. & Ward, R.D. (eds) 1999. Australian Seafood Handbook . Hobart : CSIRO Marine Research 460 pp. [267] (Oceanic Peruvian Jack Mackerel)


History of changes

Note that this list may be incomplete for dates prior to September 2013.
Published As part of group Action Date Action Type Compiler(s)
13-Dec-2012 31-Oct-2013 MODIFIED
30-Mar-2010 MODIFIED

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Last modified: Thursday, 31 October 2013 5:29:37 PM AEDT

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Common name (e.g. trout)

Genus + Species (e.g. Gadus morhua)

Trachurus murphyi Nichols , 1920

Chilean jack mackerel Add your observation in Fish Watcher
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This map was computer-generated and has not yet been reviewed.
Trachurus murphyi   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Pictures | Google image Image of Trachurus murphyi (Chilean jack mackerel) Trachurus murphyi
Picture by B├ęarez, P.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes ( gen. , sp. ) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes (Perch-likes) > Carangidae (Jacks and pompanos) > Caranginae
Etymology: Trachurus: Greek, trachys, -eia, -ys = rough + Greek, oura = tail (Ref. 45335 ) .  More on author: Nichols .

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Marine; pelagic-oceanic; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243 ); depth range 10 - 306 m (Ref. 58489 ), usually 10 - 70 m.   Subtropical; 2°N - 51°S, 106°E - 79°W (Ref. 54929 )

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

South Pacific and Southwestern Atlantic: Eastern Central and South Pacific: off Peru and Chile (Ref. 27363 ), incl. incidental in Juan Fernández Is. (Ref. 89357 ). Reported from off Ecuador (Ref. 9283 ). Southwest Pacific: off New Zealand (Ref. 5755 ). Southwestern Atlantic: off southern Argentina (Ref. 27363 )

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: L m   ? , range 39 - 42 cm
Max length : 70.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9283 ); common length : 45.0 cm FL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9283 ); max. reported age: 16 years (Ref. 26956 )

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 31-35; Anal spines : 3; Anal soft rays : 27 - 29. Body elongated and little compressed; teeth small and uniseriate; lower branch of first gill arch with 42 to 45 gill rakers; edge of shoulders girdle (cleithrum) with a small furrow at its upper end but lacking papillae; lateral line completely scaled, the scales becoming large scutes posteriorly; scutes in the area of the median curve 1.1 to 1.6 times the diameter of the eye; nape and back metallic blue or dark gray; flanks and belly pale; dorsal edge of operculum with a black stain (Ref. 55763 ). Body elongate and slightly compressed. Body dark blue dorsally, silvery-white ventrally. Black spot on upper posterior margin of opercle. Fins dusky (Ref. 37339 ). Pectoral fin falcate and very long (Ref. 27363 ).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Adults are found in the shore and open oceanic waters, in schools. They feed mainly on fish larvae and small crustaceans. Marketed fresh (Ref. 9283 ). Utilized canned for human consumption and also made into fishmeal (Ref. 9988 ). The species is often found in Juan Fernández Is. as an incidental catch of Pseudocaranx chilensis (Guichenot, 1848) fisheries (Ref. 89357 ).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : Smith-Vaniz, William F. | Collaborators

Smith-Vaniz, W.F. , 1995. Carangidae. Jureles, pámpanos, cojinúas, zapateros, cocineros, casabes, macarelas, chicharros, jorobados, medregales, pez pilota. p. 940-986. In W. Fischer, F. Krupp, W. Schneider, C. Sommer, K.E. Carpenter and V. Niem (eds.) Guia FAO para Identification de Especies para lo Fines de la Pesca. Pacifico Centro-Oriental. 3 Vols. FAO, Rome. (Ref. 9283 )

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 120744 )

  Data deficient (DD)  ; Date assessed: 30 April 2008

CITES (Ref. 118484 )

Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361 )

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans


Human uses

Fisheries: highly commercial FAO(fisheries: production , species profile ; publication : search ) | FishSource | Sea Around Us

More information

FAO areas
Food items
Food consumption
Common names
Spawning aggregation
Egg development
Larval dynamics
Aquaculture profile
Allele frequencies
Mass conversion
Stamps, Coins Misc.
Swim. type
Gill area


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Summary page | Point data | Common names | Photos

Internet sources

Aquatic Commons | BHL | Cloffa | BOLDSystems | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes ( gen. , sp. ) | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | Faunafri | Fishtrace | GenBank( genome , nucleotide ) | GloBI | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | OsteoBase( skull , spine ) | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | Tree of Life | Wikipedia( Go , Search ) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoobank | Zoological Record

Estimates based on models

Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969 ): 14.1 - 22.6, mean 16.5 (based on 352 cells). Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805 ):  PD 50 = 0.5001   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high]. Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01230 (0.00783 - 0.01932), b=2.92 (2.78 - 3.06), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245 ). Trophic Level (Ref. 69278 ):  3.3   ±0.2 se; Based on diet studies. Resilience (Ref. 120179 ):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=0.09-0.11; tmax=16). Prior r = 0.52, 95% CL = 0.34 - 0.77, Based on 1 stock assessment. Vulnerability (Ref. 59153 ):  High to very high vulnerability (67 of 100) . Price category (Ref. 80766 ):   Medium .

Entered by Luna, Susan M. Modified by Bailly, Nicolas Fish Forum
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