Yelloweye Rockfish

Category: Order: Family: Conservation Status:
Sebastes ruberrimus

The Yelloweye rockfish (Sebastes ruberrimus) is a rockfish of the genus Sebastes, and one of the biggest members of the genus. Its name derieves from its coloration. It is also known as the "red snapper." As they grow older, they change in color, from reddish in youngness, to bright orange in adulthood, to pale yellow in old age. Yelloweye live in rocky areas and feed on small fish and other rockfish. They reside in the East Pacific and range from Baja California to Prince William Sound in Alaska.


Size & Shape: 

The Yelloweye rockfish is colored red on its back, orange to yellow on the sides, and black on the fin tips. Its young are typically under 28 cm (11 in) in length, and differ from the adults in that they have two reddish-white stripes along their belly, and are often red. Because of the distinct difference in coloration between juveniles and adults, they were considered separate species for a long time. Its head spines are exceptionally strong. They grow to a maximum length of 36 in (0.9 m) and are typically found in the 28-to-215-fathom (51 to 393 m) range, although specimen have been reported up to a maximum depth of 260 fathoms (475 m).

Life History

Did you know?: 

Yelloweye rockfish live to be extremely old, even for their unusually long-lived genus. They average 114 to 120 years of age; the oldest ones reach as much as 147 years.

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