Blue Cod

Maori name: Raawaru
Scientific name: Parapercis colias
Availability: April to September
Weight: 0.8–1.5kg, up to 3kg
Length: 30–40cm, reaching 60cm

Blue cod are caught mainly in winter (from April to September) around southern New Zealand and the Chatham Islands.  They are also found in the Marlborough Sounds, Cook Strait, and off  Wanganui.  Most are caught in cod pots.

Blue Cod

Maori name: Raawaru
Scientific name: Parapercis colias
Availability: April to September
Weight: 0.8–1.5kg, up to 3kg
Length: 30–40cm, reaching 60cm
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General

Blue cod are caught mainly in winter (from April to September) around southern New Zealand and the Chatham Islands.  They are also found in the Marlborough Sounds, Cook Strait, and off  Wanganui.  Most are caught in cod pots.

Location

They are a bottom-dwelling fish, endemic to New Zealand. They are common in colder waters from Cook Strait south and around the Chatham Islands. Juveniles are often found in shallow water. Adults are found at depths of up to 150 metres. Despite this, they are predominately an inshore domestic fishery with little deepwater by-catch.

Attributes

Body colour varies depending on age and sex. Large males are more distinctly blue with greenish sides and a golden brown stripe above each eye. Some females are mottled and show a trend towards shades of green. Juveniles are white with a broad band of brown along the side. The species has an elongated body with a smoothly sloping head and snout, short, low first dorsal fin, and long second dorsal fin.

Family

Blue cod belong to the Pinguipedidae family (sandperches, weevers).

Spawning

Spawning takes place in the late winter and spring. Young fish return to the shallow reefs in the summer, growing rapidly in the first year and moderately after that.

Sustainability

Blue cod is predominantly an inshore fishery with very little deep-water catch. A bottom-dwelling fish, they are mostly caught in pots. Blue cod have been fished around New Zealand for more than 80 years. They were introduced into the Quota Management System in 1986. Blue cod abundance is monitored regularly using commercial catch rates for the main fisheries supplemented by potting surveys of areas with significant recreational fisheries.

Fishing methods

Blue cod are caught mainly in winter (from April to September) around southern New Zealand and the Chatham Islands. They are also found in the Marlborough Sounds, Cook Strait, and off Wanganui. Most are now caught in cod pots.

Nutrition

Blue Cod is a good source

To quality for a 'good source' claim the food must contain at least 25% of the RDI.
The Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) is considered to be the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97–98 per cent) healthy individuals in a particular life stage and gender group.

of Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is necessary for normal neurological function and it contributes to blood formation, energy metabolism and to the growth and development in children

, Selenium

Selenium is necessary for normal immune system function and for the production of thyroid hormones and it contributes to the maintenance of hair and nails

and Phosphorus

Phosphorus is necessary for normal teeth, bone and cell membrane structure and for energy metabolism

; and a source

To quality for a 'source' claim the food must contain at least 10% of the RDI.
The Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) is considered to be the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97–98 per cent) healthy individuals in a particular life stage and gender group.

of Iodine

Iodine is necessary for the production of thyroid hormones, for normal neurological function and for normal energy metabolism, and it contributes to the growth and development in children

and Niacin (vitamin B3)

Niacin (vitamin B3) is necessary for the release of energy from food and for the normal structure and function of skin and mucous membranes, and contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue

.

Seafood is a highly nutritious food and is a great source of protein

Protein is necessary for tissue building and repair, normal growth and development of bone in children and adolescents aged 4 years and over, and contributes to growth and maintenance of muscle mass

. Many species are low in saturated fat and a number of them are a good source of Omega 3

Omega 3 is a group of fatty acids that contribute to heart health

.

Tips

Blue cod has delicate and flaky textured white flesh. It is mild in flavour and with a low oil content, it is suitable for most cooking methods. Bake; marinate; poach; smoke; use in soup/chowder; or fry.

Buying & Storage Tips

When buying whole blue cod, always check the...
EYES: Bright and clear cornea, shiny black pupil
GILLS: Rosy pink pastel coloured gills
SKIN: Bright, with a luminous sheen

When buying blue cod fillets, always check the...
FLESH: semi-transparent and glossy

If the fish looks sticky or mushy then it is not fresh.