Three types of Mackerel are found in our waters, these are the Large King Mackerel (Kingfish), Spanish Mackerel (common around USA Southern waters) and Cero Makerel, a larger more aggressive species of the Spanish.
All provide good fun on light tackle and excellent eating!
King Mackerel may occasionally be caught from ocean piers and around inlets. Congregations often occur around wrecks, buoys, coral reefs, and other such areas where food is abundant. Schools vary in size and the largest individuals are usually loners.
This is an excellent game fish that can be taken on a wide variety of lures and baits. Nylon jigs are considered one of the best lures, especially when retrieved rapidly with an occasional jerk of the rod tip to impact a darting motion to the jig. Feather lures and spoons are also successful, while minnows and live shrimp are the best natural baits. Occasionally almost any lure or bait will work, while at other times, nothing will.
Cero differ from the king mackerel and Spanish mackerel in having a pattern of both yellow spots, yellow orange streaks, and a dark color line running the length of the body, and a lateral line that gradually curves down toward the caudal peduncle. The anterior third of the first dorsal fin is black like the Spanish mackerel. The pectoral fins are covered with small scales like the king mackerel.
They are popular game fish and are frequently taken by commercial fishermen. Sometimes, cero are used as rigged bait for larger game fish. Fishing methods are identical for cero and Spanish mackerel. As with any mackerel fishing, fast trolling while looking for baitfish is a good way to find ceros. Common lures include small silver spoons and white jigs. They also hit surface swimming plugs, chuggers, and shallow running plugs. They have sharp teeth so a wire leader is essential.