Flathead (Platycephalidae)

Flathead

  • Size 40-70 cm
  • Food Value Good
  • Game Qualities Good
  • Habitats Backcountry, Inshore, Nearshore

There’s a wide variety of species belonging to Flathead family. In Australia alone, there are more than 50 different kinds of this fish, the most common being Dusky, Tiger, and Blue Spotted Flatheads. Rest assured, all of them are delicious and you’ll be glad reel in any one of them!

How Big?

Flathead commonly grow to about 40-45 cm in length, but are known to reach up to 80 cm on occasion. In rare cases, these fish can grow more than 1 meter long. The IGFA all tackle record was a 6.33 kg (13 lb 15 oz) Dusky Flathead landed in NSW, Australia.

When and Where

Flathead inhabit tropical regions of the Atlantic Ocean as well as the Indo-Pacific, particularly near Australia. Flathead are among the most common gamefish in southern Australia, where they inhabit estuaries, river mouths, and the open ocean. The best time to target these fish is from October to April.

flathead-fish

A good-sized Flathead caught in NSW, Australia

How to Fish

Drifting and bottom fishing are the simplest methods to catch these bottom-dwelling fish. A 6-to-7’ ultra light rod and a spinning reel are usually sufficient, along with light braided line. Flathead bite a variety of live baits and lures, and many anglers prefer using the latter for an added bit of fun. Plastics, blades, vibes, and shallow diving hard-bodied minnows are all effective when fishing in sandy, shallow areas. Prawns, blood worms, and small baitfish all make good fresh or live bait.

Take care when handling your catch, since all Flathead species have a very sharp set of gill spikes around the back of their heads.

Good to Eat?

Flathead tastes excellent, which is why this became a favorite eating fish in Australia. The meat is mild, sweet, and ideal for frying (fish and chips, anyone?).


Top Flathead Fishing Charters

Top Flathead Fishing Destinations