This photo of a 225-pound mystery fish was submitted by Capt. Molly Palmer of Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, taken on the charter Renegade with Capt. Shawn Potter. SF Fish Facts expert Ben Diggles says The Louvar (Luvarus imperialis) — also called luvaru, silver king or emperodor — is a unique-looking fish that occurs in tropical and subtropical waters of all the world’s oceans. This species is the only member of the family Luvaridae, and their closest relatives are thought to be the surgeonfishes. They have a tunalike body with pink fins, small mouth and eyes that are positioned low on the head. Unlike small surgeonfishes, louvars can grow to nearly 7 feet long and upwards of 320 pounds. Although widely distributed around the world, they’re not a particularly common species anywhere, only occasionally captured by commercial fishers using purse seines or drift nets. They are even more rarely encountered by recreational anglers, with single fish being most often encountered on the surface by anglers fishing over deep waters. They feed mainly on jellyfishes. Spawning occurs during the summer months, and large female louvar are renowned for producing huge numbers of eggs. Inside one 6-foot-long specimen, scientists found nearly 50 million eggs. Testing of large louvar in European markets has found them to have high mercury levels, such that more than one meal a week would be of health concern to women of childbearing age.
Copyright © 2014 Sport Fishing Magazine. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.