Leather Jackets local fish species facts and Limits. Leather Jackets are a unique looking fish species which come in many different types in Victoria. There is the six-spinned, Chinaman,  Horseshoe, toothbrush, Mosiac and fan-bellied to name just some. There often beautifully unique looking with rich colours, and can be difficult to catch as their sharp teeth can easily cut through the line and crush hooks. You’ll often find them around shallow reefs and weedy areas around Williamstown, Mornington, Geelong, Queenscliff, Blairgowrie, Altona, Rickets point and Flinders

Scientific name:


Size and catch limits

There is no minimum legal size limit but a daily bag limit of 20. We find that most leather jackets caught are between 20cm to 30 cm, but can grow just up to 70cm in size.

Bait recommendations for leather jackets

When they school up in big numbers they will feed on just about anything. However, we recommend small pieces of prawn, pilchard, mullet, silver whiting, squid and  mussels.

Lure recommendations for leather jackets

We don’t generally specifically target leather jackets with lures or soft plastics

Leather Jacket eating rating

A very underrated eating fish. Most anglers will throw them back but they are an excellent plate fish. They have very few bones making them easy to clean and a soft sweet flesh

General Tips for leather jackets

Leather jackets have very sharp teeth so do handle with care. At times they will bust you off or shred your leader. If you’re specifically targeting them then a wire trace may be required. Berley will help attract leather jackets, and using small strong hooks is essential. Occasionally jigging your bait off the bottom helps spark bites

Rod and rig setup for leather jackets

Leather jackets have small mouths with sharp teeth. Often the same setup which you would often use to chase whiting would be an ideal choice for chasing leather jackets. We recommend a light 1-3 or 2-4 kilo spin rod around 7 foot in length. Coupled with a light 1000-2500 size reel, spooled with 4 pounds or 6-pound line and leader. They have sharp teeth and will bite through thin line occasionally. For the rig ideally a small long shank hook with a very small running pea size sinker or no sinker or unweighted.

Best times to target leatherjackets

Leather Jackets can be caught at any time of the day all year around. Just remember to burley up for them.

Recreational fishing guide

You can obtain a free Victorian recreational fishing guide from the Victorian Fisheries Authorities web link

Additions or Corrections for this fish species

If you feel this fish species guide is missing key information or needs any corrections. Then please let us know by emailing our team at enquiries@fishingmad.com.au with specific details in the email. Thank you