Cobia, aka ling in Texas, is recognized by its chocolate brown color, darker above, and the young often have a black lateral band from the snout to the base of the tail. The dorsal fin has either or nine free spike-like spines in front of the long soft fin.
Averaging 15 to 30 poinds, they can reach up to 108.44 pounds and, 71" (Texas record).
Small cobia occasionally venture into the bays, but large fish are caught exclusively in the Gulf. Cobia are most common off Texas in June through September, migrating to tropical waters during winter.
Cobia spend most of their time under floating or stationary objects in the open Gulf. Cobia feed on crabs, shrimp and small fish, especially bottom-dwelling fish such as flounder.
How To Catch
Highly sought sport fish, they make powerful runs with occasional jumps when hooked. Shrimp, squid and large spoons, plugs and jogs are good baits used with wire leader and 15-25 pound test monofilament rigs.
Where To Catch
Look for them under surface objects such as logs, buoys, oil rigs and boats. They especially like to feed on scrap fish from shrimp boats.
How To Eat
Cobia is an exceptionally fine food fish. The ling has firm, white meat, making it ideal for charcoal broiling or deep frying.