They are called Tailor in Australia. Known as Elf or Shad in South Africa. Simply, Blues along the east coast of the US. Big ones are choppers, little ones are snappers. The Bluefish is caught in subtropical temperate waters in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans as well as the Mediterranean and Black Seas with great appeal to many anglers.
Often times besmirched, the Bluefish has provided a great deal of enjoyment, many a hearty meal, a good deal of money to charter boats, head boats and allot of proper training to young mates learning the charter fishing trade.
On the Mid Atlantic US east coast, the bluefish after World War II became the staple business of charter and head boats. Surf fisherman have enjoyed their play with lustful enthusiasm all along the east coast from Hatteras to Cape Cod. Recreationally they can be caught trolling, jigging, top water casting, drifting bait chunks, chumming— you name it, they are game and a thrill on light tackle. With their large broad forked tail, they assume a good pound-for-pound fight to the angler. Often times breaking the surface and showing themselves as gamefish would.
A noted food source, commercial gill netters made plenty of money when they would set on a school. The long duration of their season made them a viable product to ship to the large markets from Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York and Boston.
So it was in the late 1940’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and early 80’s that Bluefish were the target species out of many ports on the Jersey and upper east coast to New England, particularly Beach Haven, NJ with its busy charter fleet sailing from the Beach Haven Yacht Club, Coney’s Dock, Howe’s Marina, Priestley’s, later Morrison’s and others. My father was a mate out of the yacht club in the 40’s and 50’s and I got my first real charter job on the Sapphire Lady with Capt. Fred Kalm in the summer of 1977.