Pacific Crevalle Jack

Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus

The Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus, whose common Spanish name is jurel toro and whose local name is toro, is a fairly common member of the Jack or Carangidae Family, known collectively as jureles and pámpanos in Mexico. Globally, there are seventeen species in the genus Caranx, nine of which are found in Mexican waters, three in the Atlantic and five in the Pacific and one in both oceans.

The Pacific Crevalle Jacks have “jack-like” moderately compressed deep oblong bodies with a depth that is 30 to 34% of standard length. They are greenish-blue dorsally and silvery-white to yellow on their lower sides. They have a black spot on their gill cover and a black blotch on the lower corner of their pectoral fins. Their anal and caudal fins are yellowish. Juveniles are darker in color and have five light colored stripes on their sides (as pictured below). They have a rounded head with a blunt snout. They have fairly small eyes set high on their head. Their mouth is large extending past the eyes and opens at the front. They have 18 to 20 gill rakers. Their pectoral fins are longer than the head. Their caudal fin is deeply forked. They have 35 to 42 strong prominent scutes and a pronounced lateral line with a moderately long anterior arch.

The Pacific Crevalle Jacks are a pelagic species found at depths up to 1,100 feet. They reach a maximum length of 101.6 cm (40.0 inches) and weight of 19.7 kg (43 pounds), which is the current IGFA world record, with this fish being caught in Costa Rica waters in 1997. They are 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 to 42 gill rakers; 23 to 35 scutes). It can also be confused with the Bigeye Trevally, Caranx sexfasciatus (large eyes; smaller black spot high on gill cover) and the Golden Trevally, Gnathanodon speciosus (large lips; no black spot on gill cover; mid-sized black spots on sides).

The Pacific Crevalle Jacks are one of the most famous species in Mexican waters. They are known for their strength and targeted by recreational fishermen. They travel in large schools and crash the beach chasing sardines in feeding frenzies that last about 15 minutes. Excellent opportunities exist to hook these fish with a “Krocodile” or live sardines. They are considered 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.

Length versus Weight Chart:Pacific Crevalle Jack Length to Weight Table is included in this website to allow the accurate determination of a fish’s weight from its length and to hopefully promote its rapid and unharmed return to the ocean. 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.

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 at Km 21, Cabo Real, Baja California Sur, July 2010. Length: 35 cm (14 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 at Km 21, Cabo Real, Baja California Sur, July 2010. Length: 18 cm (7.1 inches).
Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus: Caught from a panga off Cerralvo Island, Baja California Sur, May 2010 requiring 90 minutes to land. Length from the photo estimated to be greater than the current know world recocrd for this species. Photo courtesy of Guy Manning, Redlands, CA.
Pacific Crevalle Jack, Caranx caninus: Caught from a panga off Cerralvo Island, Baja California Sur, May 2010. Length estimated from the photo to be greater than the current know world record for this species. Photo courtesy of Guy Manning, Reddling, CA.