Rock lobster

Maori name: koura
Scientific name: Jasus edwardsii
Availability: Year round
Weight: Generally 0.6–1kg, but to over 5kg
Length: Measured by tail width – from 54mm (males) to over 100mm (large females)

Rock lobster

Maori name: koura
Scientific name: Jasus edwardsii
Availability: Year round
Weight: Generally 0.6–1kg, but to over 5kg
Length: Measured by tail width – from 54mm (males) to over 100mm (large females)
X

Location

The species is abundant in New Zealand and is also found across the southern coastline of Australia from Tasmania west to Albany in Western Australia. Rock lobsters are found along most rocky coastlines around New Zealand, with the main concentrations occurring along the east coasts of the North and South Islands, the south and south-west coast of the South Island, including Stewart Island and the Chatham Islands.

Family

Rock lobsters belong to the Palinuridae family (spiny lobsters).

Sustainability

Red rock lobsters are caught all around the North and South Islands, Stewart Island and the Chatham Islands. Another species, the packhorse rock lobster is mainly taken in the north of the North Island. Rock lobsters are important to Maori, commercial and recreational fishers and their stock status is closely monitored. For red rock lobster stocks, periodic stock assessments have been used to develop management procedures that allow timely changes in catch limits as abundance changes. These catch adjustments have allowed stocks to rebuild rapidly when required, and target abundances have been selected to maintain high catch rates.

Fishing methods

Rock lobsters are harvested throughout the year. In general, the lowest catches occur when Rock lobsters are moulting and mating (usually between February and May). The highest catches usually occur from June to November, with regional variations.

 

There are nine rock lobster fisheries management areas around New Zealand. Commercial landings fluctuate at about 2,500 tonnes each season.

Nutrition

Rock lobster 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 Copper

Copper is necessary for nomal energy production and normal immune system function and it contributes to the transport and metabolism of iron

, 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

, Phosphorus

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

and 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

; 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 Magnesium

Magnesium is necessary for normal nerve and muscle function and for teeth and bone structure and it contributes to normal energy metabolism

, 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

, Zinc

Zinc is necessary for normal immune system function, contributes to normal skin structure and the healing of wounds, the maintenance of bones, hair and nails

, Potassium

Potassium is necessary for water and electrolyte balance, it contributes to the functioning of the nervous system and normal muscle function; and to the normal growth and development of 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

Dispatch by chilling in the freezer for at least an hour before cooking. Cooking freshly killed lobsters in boiling salted water turns the flesh from translucent to opaque. For a 600-800g lobster, boil for 10 minutes or steam for 15-18 minutes. If grilling, par-boil for 5 minutes, put into an ice bowl, remove meat and grill flesh-side down with oil or butter for approximately 5 minutes on each side. Be careful not to overcook lobster as this will make the flesh tough - cook only until the flesh begins to turn opaque.

Buying & Storage Tips

Ideally, lobsters should be purchased live and eaten the same day. Healthy lobsters act lively when handled. Refrigerate live lobsters in a sealed container as soon as possible, covering with a damp cloth and after they have been dispatched, cook within 12 to 18 hours. Do not allow lobsters to sit at room temperature for more than half an hour. Cooked lobster should be refrigerated and consumed within two days.