TUSK FISH, VENUS
The Venus Tuskfish is small blue to white dots on each scale. It has large red to pink smudges on sides. It’s fins and lips are edged in bright blue-purple and a black shoulder blotch may be present in some fish.
The Venus Tuskfish is a moderately deep bodied fish with two pairs of canines in the front of the lower jaw. The caudal fin is emarginate. The colouration of this species is variable. It is often greenish or brownish above, fading to yellowish below. The sides are often reddish, especially around the pectoral fin. Adults have blue spots on the body scales.
All tusk fish are members of the wrasse family and are often mistaken as a parrot fish. To tell them apart is easy just take a look at the mouth of the fish and if they have a beak they are a parrot fish and if they have large tusk like teeth they are the tusk fish. The average size is around 1-2kg and the biggest ones can go up to 5kg.
They congregate on the bottom around rock or coral reefs. Can be caught in water as shallow as 18m and as deep as 90m, but best results are in the 50-60 metre range. Good baits include squid, crab, fish flesh, pilchard, prawn and even chicken strips. Tackle used is 30-50lb mono leader with 5/0 to 8/0 hooks rigged in a paternoster formation. Best results are drifting through a patch of rough ground with scattered life and if the drift produces fish you should do it again if not just move north or south and try again.
The Venus Tuskfish is found in Australia and the Philippines.
The Venus Tuskfish is mostly is found in subtropical marine waters from southern Queensland to the central coast of New South Wales.