Found in coastal
waters, estuaries and lagoons, in clear to turbid water. A
diadromous fish, inhabiting rivers before returning to the
estuaries to spawn. A protandrous hermaphrodite. Larvae and
young juveniles live in brackish temporary swamps associated
with estuaries, and older juveniles inhabit the upper
reaches of rivers. Have preference for cover on undercut
banks, submerged logs and overhanging vegetation. Feed on
fishes and crustaceans. They reach 1500-3000 g in one year
in ponds under optimum conditions. Juveniles also eat
insects. Sold fresh and frozen; consumed steamed, pan-fried,
broiled and baked. A very popular and sought-after fish of
very considerable economic importance. Presently used for
aquaculture in Thailand, Indonesia and Australia.
Australia's most important commercial fish and one of the
most popular angling species.