Pacific Crevalle Jack

Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus

The Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus, whose common Spanish name is “Jurel Toro”, and local name is just “Toro”, is a fairly common member of the Jack or Carangidae Family, known collectively as “Jureles and Pámpanos” in Mexico.

The Pacific Crevalle Jack has an overall “jack-like” appearance with a moderately compressed deep oblong body with a width that is 30 to 34% of standard length. They are greenish blue on the back and silvery white to yellow on the lower sides. They have a black spot on the gill cover and the lower corner of the pectoral fin also has a black blotch. The anal and deeply forked caudal fins are yellowish. Juveniles are darker in color with five light colored stripes along the sides (as pictured below). They have rounded heads with a blunt snout and fairly small eyes set high on the head and the mouth is large, extending past the eye, and opens in the front. Pacific Crevalle Jack have three to six plus fifteen to seventeen gill rakers. The pectoral fins are longer than the head. They have thirty five to forty two strong prominent scutes and the lateral line is pronounced with a moderately long anterior arch.

The Pacific Crevalle Jack reach a maximum of 101.6 cm (40.0 inches) and 19.7 kg (43 pounds) which is the current I.G.F.A. world record, with the fish caught in Costa Rican waters in 1997. Within this website you can also find a Pacific Crevelle Jack Length to Weight Graph that allows one to determine the weight of a Pacific Crevalle Jack from its length. I believe that the world record fish currently resides in greater Los Cabos waters and catches of large fish need to be monitored, measured, weighed and documented appropriately. They are found at all depths up to 1,100 feet. They are a poorly studied and very little is known about their behavior patterns. The Pacific Crevalle Jack is pelagic and found in all Mexican waters of the Pacific.

The Pacific Crevalle Jack is virtually identical to the Crevalle Jack, Caranx hippos, an Atlantic Ocean only species (35 – 42 gill rakers; 23 to 35 scutes),  and can also be confused with the Bigeye Trevally, Caranx sexfascitus (large eye and a smaller black spot high on the gill cover) and the Golden Trevally, Gnathanodon speciosus (large lips, no black spots on the gill covers and intermediate sized black spots on the sides).

The Pacific Crevalle Jack is one of the most famous species in Mexican waters, known for its strength they are targeted by recreational fishermen. They travel in large schools and are known to crash the beach chasing sardines in feeding frenzies that will last about 15 minutes; if you are there and armed with a “Krocodile” or live sardines you have an excellent opportunity to hook one. They are considered to be marginal table fare by locals and normally a “catch and release” by all but subsistence fishermen or if tourists are present in the docking area.

Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus: Caught off the beach on a Carolina rig with a frozen sardine at Km 21, Cabo Real, Baja California Sur, July 2010. Length: 35 cm (13.8 inches).
Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus: Caught off the beach on a Carolina rig with a frozen sardine at Km 21, Cabo Real, Baja California Sur, July 2010. Length: 35 cm (13.8 inches).
Pacific Crevalle Jack, Juvenile, Caranx caninus: Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus: Caught off the beach on a Carolina rig with a frozen sardine at Km 21, Cabo Real, Baja California Sur, July 2010. Length: 18 cm (7.1 inches).
Pacific Crevalle Jack, Juvenile, Caranx caninus:  Caught off the beach on a Carolina rig with a frozen sardine at Km 21, Cabo Real, Baja California Sur, July 2010. Length: 18 cm (7.1 inches).