Bombay duck fish, (Harpadon nehereus), fish of the family Synodontidae, is found in estuaries of northern India, where it is widely used as a food fish and, when dried, as a condiment.
The Bombay duck grows to a length of about 41 cm (16 inches) and is a dull, translucent gray or brown with small, dark speckles.
The head is small and flattened, with large eyes and a deep, prominent snout. The mouth forms a U-shaped curve. Bombay duck is generally considered one of the more attractive catfish that Indian anglers can catch in rivers, but it is also highly prized for food in the same areas.
Bombay duck fish usually is eaten fresh, steamed, or grilled. It is often used as a substitute for shark meat in preparing chowders and curries. The dried fish is sold in Bombay, Madras (Chennai), and other coastal cities of India.
Dried Bombay duck has a salty, slightly sweet taste but is not aromatic. Because it has a texture similar to beef jerky, dried Bombay duck has been used as an ingredient in some Western-style soups and stews.
Characteristics of Bombay Duck Fish
Bombay duck’s eye, about 3 cm wide, is located in the middle of the head. The Bombay duck has a long history in Indian cuisines from when it was fished in ancient times.
The fish is now found in most of India’s coastal regions, and global trade has developed to supply Indian restaurants and supermarkets with fish supplies.
Bombay duck is also found in the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea. It is said to have great potential in aquaculture, but as of 2010, no commercial operations were raising this fish.
The Bombay duck has commercial importance to fisheries. The Bombay duck is a deep-water species and lives in saltwater. It is commercially important as a food fish, especially in Mumbai (Bombay).
Bombay Duck Fish Origin
Bombay duck is believed to have originated from the Bay of Bengal and spread to the Indian coasts.
As Bombay duck or “Hargadon numerous” was also found in western Africa along the Niger River and was first described as a distinct species in 1836.
Two subspecies are recognized: “Hargadon numerous numerous” in the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea, and “Hargadon numerous falsidical” off West Africa.
The subspecies “Harpadon nehereus fastidious” was described in 1836, by the French zoologist Achille Valenciennes, from specimens collected by biologist-naturalist Émile Oustalet near the mouth of the Niger River.
The common name of this fish was changed to “Harpidon nehereus” in 1982. This species is found along with western Africa in the Niger River system.
The Bombay duck’s scientific name, “Harpadon Nereus,” is often used in the literature. However, in the past, its African subspecies have sometimes been called a separate species, Harpadon fastidious. Moreover, recent taxonomic studies suggest the Indian subspecies are distinct from the African ones.
Breed of Bombay Duck Fish
Bombay duck is a breeding fish. The eggs are incubated by the male fish, who holds them in his mouth and releases them into the water to hatch and be eaten by other members of the species.
Bombay is sold in small live form, about 3 to 5 cm long. It is a good feed for children as well as for adults.
The most important factor that drives the population is the quick succession of eggs. Even if some eggs are destroyed, there is (still) another batch of eggs available for hatching.
Fishing for Bombay Duck Fish
Bombay duck fish are caught mostly in the summer months from November to April. The fish are seen along the coast, especially near Mumbai and in the coastal areas up to about 10 km from the mouth of rivers; also in other rivers such as tributaries of Ganges and Yamuna.
The fishing is done using small wooden traps, made with a perforated metal ring and two small latches attached to it. The traps are anchored on the bottom at a depth of about 2 to 6 m, and the fish are caught by hooking them in their gill region with a simple hook.
Bombay duck fish are usually caught in the morning or evening. They keep well in a dry period, but they die after a couple of days if they are not cooked properly.
Benefits of Bombay Duck Fish
Here are The Best 10 Benefits of Bombay Duck Fish
1. It is rich in proteins, calcium, and iron.
2. It is easily digestible.
3. It is high on nutrition.
4. It helps to maintain the good health of bones and teeth.
5. It can be eaten boiled or fried in its raw form, but the best way to consume this fish would be to steam it.
6. It is certainly low in cholesterol.
7. A rich source of omega 3 fatty acid is one of the best that can help lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and raise good cholesterol (HDL).
8. It is one of the richest sources of vitamin A. Every 100 grams of this fish contains more than 300% of the RDA (recommended daily allowance) for the vitamin.
9. Vitamin B complex, B1, B2, B3, and B6 are also present in great quantities.
10. It is a good source of selenium and other trace elements, such as zinc and iron.
Other Information of Bombay Duck Fish
On dry land, the Bombay duck is a predatory fish. While in water, it feeds on crustaceans and small fishes of the same species. It provides mainly at night and is also known to feed during rainy days, feeding on marine worms and mollusks.
Is Bombay duck fish good for health?
In most India, the long-necked mackerel is known as “Bombay duck.” Scientifically speaking, it is not called a duck. It is a member of the mackerel family.
It is closely related to the “Kurla” (sea bream) and “habanero” (female), and it has also been confused with them. In some varieties, it has scales over its head, but in others, the young ones have scales on their heads that are shed before they become adults.
Bombay duck is good for health because it is a clean fish. It does not have any impurities and is thus beneficial for maintaining health.
It can be eaten raw or cooked. A large part of this fish is consumed in the coastal regions of Mumbai, where the fish has been cultivated from time immemorial. The culinary uses of this fish are many, with the best being its preparation into Bombay duck curry and Bombay duck fry.
Is Bombay duck fish tasty?
The Bombay duck is an excellent food fish and is tasty too. It is thus consumed in various forms for good health, with the most commonly eaten form being Bombay duck fry. It is also a very important part of many Maharashtrian and Konkani cuisines.
What does Bombay duck taste like?
The taste of Bombay duck depends on the preparation that the fish gets. Firstly, Konkani cuisine is served with a masala of coconut and curry leaves.
It is therefore naturally sweet and spicy. In Maharashtrian cuisine, it can have a slightly salty taste, too, depending on how it is prepared. It is often fried in groundnut oil and then eaten with boiled rice or bhakri (the local flatbread).
How to cook Bombay Duck Fish?
It can be cooked in various ways, with the best being its preparation in the “Bombay duck fry” and “Bombay Duck curry.” It can easily be made into a fish curry or fried fish too.
Why is Bombay duck illegal?
The Bombay duck was once commercially important in the coastal region of Mumbai, where the fish was cultivated from time immemorial. The recreational fishery for this fish has been closed since 1986.
Bombay Duck Fish and Dandelion are the main ingredients of the Mumbai Curry recipe, a well-known fast-food dish in Maharashtra and Goa.
Bombay Duck Fish is a very good choice for you and your family. This fish is highly nutritious and has no fat in it. It is easy to digest, high on nutrition, and helps maintain good bones and teeth health.
So Bombay Duck is a delicious dish for your dinner, lunch, or breakfast with different recipes like how to cook and make Mumbai curry with duck recipe. Thank you for reading this article about Bombay Duck.
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