What Other Fish Species Can You Catch in Rompin Other Than Sailfish

Father and son team, Brodie and Peter with one of the bigger sailfish caught during their 2017 trip.

Most of you know the number one target species for most visitors to Kuala Rompin is the Indo-Pacific sailfish. So, what other species are caught either as by-catch or targeted species?

Below are some of the more notable or sporting species for rod and line. Although not a comprehensive list of species, this should give you a rough idea of the type of fish in Malaysia and its surrounding waters.

Before you think we can go and catch any of theses species, do note that these are pelagic fish, meaning they can move around quite a bit and may not be present when you want them to be.

Many of these species are also may not be where the sailfish are, if sailfish is your main target specie.

Other fish species you might encounter while fishing in Kuala Rompin, in alphabetical order:


Mostly juvenile black marlin – although the odd 100kg+ fish had been sighted with few landed. Most big marlin are often lost after an extended battle due mainly due to the generally light gear being deployed for sailfish.

It is difficult to specify the best time for marlin as they’ve been caught throughout the season, in very small numbers.


Here is a video of a decent size (by Rompin standards) black marlin from one of our trips.


Local name: Alu-alu

Considered a nuisance by some but can add to the day’s excitement and the big ones can be fun especially on lighter gear.

Two species of barracuda are present all year especially when there are many baitfish about, the yellowtail and great barracuda.

Mike's casting awarded him with a nice barracuda
Mike’s casting awarded him with a nice barracuda


Local name: Ikan pisang

More often than not bonefish are a welcomed accidental catch on small/micro jigs and bottom rigs. There are a few spots that produce bonefish but they cannot be targeted like bonefish normally would be as there are no flats here to sight-fish for them.

Kuala Rompin bonefish
Kuala Rompin bonefish

Bonefish in Rompin are all accidental catches when targeting other species with light jigs or live shrimps.



Local name: Haruan Tasek

They are quite aplenty at times and can get quite huge. Always fun to catch as they can put up a good fight and many also find them a good eating fish.


Dorado aka Dolphinfish aka Mahi-Mahi

Local name: Ikan Belitung

The chicken and bulls of the sea! Always a welcome catch as they fight hard, are acrobatic and some say tasty.

You never quite know when you’ll run into these colourful hard-fighting acrobats. Almost always found around Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs) or structures, often further out from shore in deeper blue waters.

Not a species targeted as a food fish locally but they sure a lot of fun to catch on lighter gear.

Greg Flowers with a stunning dorado or mahi-mahi
Greg Flowers with a stunning dorado or mahi-mahi


Local name: Kerapu

Species vary but they usually don’t come very big.

No particular best time to catch them, mainly factored in by hitting the right spot at the right time as these are highly-sought after fish by both local anglers and commercial fishers.

Dinner plate fish, an estuary grouper.
Dinner plate fish, an estuary grouper.


There are a few types of snappers found in Rompin waters but by far the most sought after is probably the red snapper. They are a highly prized food fish in the local markets.

Brian pictured here holding a red snapper of nice size during his maiden trip to Kuala Rompin with his kids

Longtom Needlefish / Garfish

Local name: Ikan todak

Jesse with a todak (garfish) aka Singapore marlin that made a mess of the lines
Jesse with a todak (garfish) aka Singapore marlin that made a mess of the lines

Narrow-barred Spanish Mackerel

Local name: Ikan tenggiri

Member of the razor gang
Member of the razor gang


Local name: Ikan talang


Giant Trevally

Local name: Ikan gerepuh

The brute of the fish that every hardcore popper popping angler wants to catch. The giant trevally are found in Kuala Rompin, at times in surprising numbers but at the same time can be very elusive. You will need to be very persistent and make a thousand casts, or more, and get lucky to even hook one.

Filipe targeted the GT rather than sailfish and is duly rewarded.

Golden Trevally


Yellow-spotted Trevally

Paul says he enjoyed himself tremendously and also very happy with adding this yellow-spotted trevally to his list
Paul says he enjoyed himself tremendously and also very happy with adding this yellow-spotted trevally to his list

Diamond Trevally


Bludger Trevally


Longfin Trevally

Local name: Sagai




Squid Fishing (Egging)

Local name: Candat sotong

  • Squid underwater
  • Squid fishing in Rompin

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