Soaring Mackerel: Unbelievable Leap Caught on Video

soaring mackerel

soaring mackerel

Relentless and red-hot pursuit in the water and out is typical of aggressive narrow-barred mackerel like this one chasing a hookless Halco Roosta Popper.Doug Olander

There are a number of species I've encountered in faraway waters that I find myself fervently wishing inhabited U.S. waters because they're such fabulous game fish. That would include queenfish and, in fresh water, certainly the amazing snakehead (which is caught here in a few places). And always in that list is the narrow-barred Spanish mackerel, which I've written about in awed tones, with good reason.

One of those reasons can be seen in the Australian Fishing World video below. It’s really only a single leap, a couple seconds of mind-numbing speed and height, repeated in slow-mo. (And note that it still has in its jaws the lure under which it exploded like a missile!)

More than once, in SF features, I've compared "Spaniards," as Aussies call them (but they're hardly like our little Spanish mackerel), to kingfish on steroids. I've stripped poppers off hooks just to see these fish skyrocket on the hapless lures; I've caught that mid-air action on film (one such shot shown here) — one such image appeared as an SF cover. I've looked at the horizon from a boat anchored off northwestern Australia to see Spaniards hurtling far into the sky again and again, as a school terrorized baitfish on top.

So I thought I’d share this little video as further proof of the amazing ability of this species. Anyone who has the chance to fish Indo-Pacific waters should try for some close encounters of the narrow-barred mackerel kind — just be ready to duck!