The Brassy Trevally, Caranx papuensis (also known as the Brassy Kingfish, Papuan Trevally, Tea-leaf Trevally and Green Back Trevally) is a species of large marine fish classified in the jack family, Carangidae.
They are a great light tackle fighter found in various lagoons and reefs in the Indo Pacific. They are an aggressive fish that puts up quite a fight and when people first catch them they are often surprised at how a small fish can put up such a hard fight. They are one of the strongest pound for pound fish in the world. The species grows to a known maximum length of 88 cm and a weight of at least 6.4 kg. Also, they are very good eating.
It is often confused with the Giant Trevally, Caranx ignobilis, but is best distinguished by its lighter dorsal colouring and abundant black spots. It is similar in general appearance to most jacks in the genus, having a compressed, oblong body, with the dorsal profile more convex than theventral profile, particularly anteriorly. The dorsal fin is in two distinct parts; the first consisting of 8 spine and the second of 1 spine and 21 to 23 soft rays. The anal fin consists of 2 anteriorly detached spines followed by 1 spine and 16 to 19 soft rays, while the pelvic fins have 1 spine followed by 19 to 20 soft rays. The lateral line is moderately arched anteriorly, with 53 to 61 scales in this section, while the straight section contains 0 to 3 scales and 31 to 39 strong scutes. The breast is naked ventrally with the exception of a small patch of scales before the pelvic fin. The species has weakly developed adipose eyelids, while its dentition consists of an outer row of widely spaced canines and an inner band of villiform teeth in the upper jaw with a row of widely spaced conical teeth on the lower jaw. The brassy trevally has 26 to 30 gill rakers and 24 vertebrae.
You should be able to land pretty much any Brassy Trevally on 30lb braid and a medium spinning outfit. Brassy Trevally readily eat both bait and lures, but I have caught most of mine on lures. This might be one of those fish for which lures consistently work better than bait because these fish are aggressive and like to chase things. Brassy Trevally can be caught using the same methods you would use to catch any other type of Trevally of the same size.
For smaller Brassy Trevally, I really like to use a clear plastic bobber, fill it with water, and then use a plastic strip about 30” past the bobber. You cast this as far as you can and immediately start reeling it in quickly while popping the rod tip every few seconds. This causes the plastic bobber to splash water and attracts the Brassy Trevally, which come to investigate the commotion and then inhale the plastic strip. Often you will find that fish attack the bobber, so you can attach a treble hook to it with a split ring and catch fish on the bobber as well as the plastic strip. If you want to get fancy you can also attach a red bead to the line ahead of the plastic strip.
The Sebile Stick Shad in the smaller sizes works very well on these fish. If they are near the surface, you can try small to medium size poppers or a Saltwater Heddon Zara Spook.. Brassy Trevally are rarely interested in slow moving lures.
Brassy Trevally can be caught on a variety of live baits such as baitfish or dead baits such as octopus or shrimp.
The Brassy Trevally is widespread throughout the tropical and subtropical waters of the Indian and West Pacific Oceans. Its range extends from South Africa and Madagascar north along the east African coast, but no records of the species are known from the Red Sea or Persian Gulf. Records resume from India eastward throughout South East Asia, the Indonesian Archipelago and numerous Indian Ocean and east Pacific island groups. The species is known from as far south as Sydney, Australia and as far north as the Ryukyu Islands of Japan. Its range extends eastward to the Marquesas Islands in the central Pacific.
The Brassy Trevally inhabitats most of the Australian coast. It is known for going as south as Sydney and also to the far north-east.