- Medium-sized rockfish with a compressed body.
- Bright red coloration on the body and fins; many with black and gray mottling on back and sides.
- Have a large mouth with a lower jaw that protrudes beyond small upper jaw.
- Juvenile fish will have more mottling, often darker in color.
- Adult fish usually 14-22 inches long.
- From Prince William Sound, Alaska to Baja California, Mexico.
- It is generally found over rocky bottoms.
- Found at depths of 100 to 500 feet.
- Mature at 5-6 years old.
- Larger fish contain more eggs; a 21-inch fish can have 1,600,000 eggs!
- Mating period from December to March.
- Internal fertilization occurs, and females give birth to live young.
- Juvenile vermilion rockfish feed primarily upon shrimp–like animals, like krill.
- The larger adults feed almost exclusively upon fishes (including smaller kinds of rockfish and white croaker), squid, and octopus.
- Predators include humans, as well as sea lions, seals, sharks, and cetaceans.
- Names of this fish also include vermilion seaperch, red snapper, red rock cod, and rasher.
- These fish can live to be 60 years old.
Sources: NOAA Fisheries; California Sea Grant; California Department of Fish and Game
Photo: Kevin Lee