Salema - Sarpa Salpa (Boops Salpa)
Latin: Sarpa Salpa (Boops Salpa)
English: Salema, Salema Porgy
Italian: Salema, Salpa
Spanish: La Salema, Salpa
Croatian: Salpa, sopa, zlatica
About: Salema is fish from Sparidae family. With egg-shaped body and small head, it has small mouth with teeth optimized for mostly herbivorous nutrition. Only small species like to feed on crustaceans and similar food.
Back is light gray-bluish with sides and belly being lighter and more white-silver. It is well known for it's numerous gold stripes from head to tail.
Maximum length is up to 51 cm (20 inches) and maximum weight is around 3 kilograms (6.6 pounds). On average, it weighs around 0.15kg (0.3 pounds), although species around 30cm (one feet) can be quite numerous in some areas. Spawning occurs at the end of summer.
It can form sizable schools.
Habitat: It can be found in Eastern Atlantic and in the Mediterranean Sea from shallows up to 30m, rarely deeper (up to 70m). During high tides, it likes to eat seaweed that was dried on sun during low tide.
It is often found in small, quiet bays with rocks covered with various Ulva seaweed species.
Fishing period: Best time for fishing Salema is during summer, mostly during the day (in the morning or in the evening).
Fishing rigs and tackle: Large Salemas are often found in fish traps or nets. Skilled diver with speargun can wreak havoc in large schools, so if you are one of them, don't catch more than you need.
Smaller Salemas are easily caught on small hooks baited with worms, fish meat, bread, paste, small prawns (really small) etc.
Live Salema is great bait on longlines - some fishermen keep record witch hook was baited with what fish (Salema, mullet, prawn etc) and keep that information as great secret :)
Cuisine: When fresh, it can be delicacy - especially barbequed with little bit of olive oil, lemon and some garlic.
Unfortunately, flesh spoils and softens quickly.
Salema fish caught on light handline from anchored boat.
Salema is also very good when fried on non-stick frying pan with just few drops of olive oil on medium heat. It is also very good in mixed fish stew.
Sometimes, its meat can have unpleasant smell and aroma (rarely), but that depends on location.