Latin name

Sebastes melanops

Other names

Black snapper, black bass, gray rockfish, red snapper, sea bass, black rock cod.


The body of black rock is oval or egg-shaped and compressed. The head has a steep upper profile, almost straight. Mouth is large, lower jaw slightly protrude. The eyes are moderately large. The dorsal color is brown to black, paler on the sides, and dirt-white underneath. There are black spots on the dorsal fin. This species is easily confused with the blue rockfish, but the anal fin of the black rockfish is rounded, while the anal fin of the blue rockfish is beveled or straight. The black rockfish has spots on its dorsal fin, while the blue rockfish does not.


Black rockfish are found from Paradise Bay, California, to Amchitka Island, Alaska.


This widespread fish can live at the surface or on the bottom, at depths of up to 1,200 feet near rocky reefs or in open water over deep shoals or bluffs. Offshore and deep-water individuals are larger than coastal ones.


This species can reach a length of 25 inches and weigh 11 pounds. The largest recorded specimen weighed 101⁄2 pounds.

Life history and Behavior

Like all members of this family, it is an ovoviviparous, with fertilization and egg development occurring in the mother's body. When embryonic development is complete, the female releases the eggs. Exposure to seawater activates the embryo, and it emerges from the oviduct. Juveniles hatch in the spring and form large schools near the bottom in estuaries and tidal pools in the summer. Adults may be numerous in summer in shallow waters near kelp-covered shores, but in fall and winter they move into deeper waters. They may congregate on rocky reefs from the bottom to the surface and are caught in a variety of depths, from close to the surface to 1,200 feet.

Food and feeding habits

Their diet includes squid, crab eggs, and fish. Occasionally, they can be seen feeding on sand lance on the surface. Salmon fishermen sometimes catch this fish with trolling herring.


No information

Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Squad Scorpaeniformes
Family Scorpaenidae
Genus Sebastes
Species S. melanops
Conservation status Critically Endangered
Habitat Pelagic
Life span, years 8
Maximum body weight, kg 4.8
Maximum length, cm 63
Sailing speed, m/s No information
Threat to people Edible
Way of eating Predator

Write a comment

Note: HTML is not translated!
    Bad           Good

Rockfish, Black

Tags: Rockfish, Black