The Fork Beard is mainly the product of by-catch from demersal and longline fisheries targeting species such as hake, megrim, monkfish, link and blue link. Therefore it is mainly caught using deep-water trawls. In Malta, the main fishing method used to catch the Fork Beard is by using drifting longlines.
It is usually available during the summer months.
Fork beard is also referred to as the European forked hake or hake’s dame. It is a member of the cod family and is generally found in water depths from 10m to over 1000m.
Its maximum length is 110cm whilst its maximum weight is 3.5kg. The maximum reported lifespan is that of 20 years.
Being a deep-sea fish it is highly vulnerable to over-exploitation and has a low resilience to fishing. fish4tomorrow suggests you avoid eating fork beard.