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Saratoga (Scleropages leichardti)
- Size 50-100 cm
- Food Value None
- Game Qualities Good
- Habitats River
Saratoga is rather underrated as a gamefish. Australia has two native species of ‘Toga: Northern Saratoga (Scleropages jardinii) and Southern Saratoga (Scleropages leichardti). While Southern ‘Togas are also commonly called “Spotted Barramundi,” their cousins to the north are the ones who actually share waters with the mighty Barra.
Saratoga typically measure 50 cm long, but are known to reach up to 100 cm.
When and Where
Northern Saratoga live in rivers and billabongs along the north coast of Australia, from the Gulf of Carpentaria to Western Australia. This species is also found in New Guinea.
Southern Saratoga are native to the Fitzroy River system in Western Australia, but anglers also catch this fish in the Mary, Dawson, and Burnett rivers in Queensland.
How to Fish
It’s common to catch Saratoga on light tackle (2-5 kg rod) and fly fishing gear. Using 8-10 lb braided line and a 14-20 lb leader are recommended to withstand the ‘Toga’s sharp bite!
Good to Eat?
Saratoga are not considered good eating fish, mainly because they’re very bony. Most anglers release their catch, but you’re allowed to keep this fish so long as it meets local size requirements (bag limits may apply). As an excellent sport fish, it’s best to let your Saratoga live so he can give anglers a run for their money some other day!