Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes0
Order: Scorpaeniformes (Scorpionfishes and flatheads)
Family: Sebastidae (Rockfishes, rockcods and thornyheads)

Genus/species: Sebastes melanops

NOTE Eschmeyer (CAS curator emeritus) and others recognize Sebastidae as a separate family that includes only the rockfishes. Others place rockfish together with scorpionfish in the
single family Scorpaenidae.

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Black to blue-black mottled with gray. Some individuals have lighter patches on back and a gray lateral stripe from head to tail. It is originally all-black, but turns a mottled gray on the sides with age, often nearing white. Lacks the dark head bands of the blue rockfish; also has more gray, a smaller mouth, and a longer jaw than the blue.

Length up to 64 cm (25 in)


DISTRIBUTION: West Coast of North America (Eastern Pacific: Amchitka Island, Aleutian Islands, Alaska to Paradise Cove, Baja California, Mexico) where populations are stable.

Found down to a depth of 366 m.


REPRODUCTION: Sebastes sp. rockfish are slow-growing and extremely long-lived with black rockfish becoming sexually mature only after 6 to 8 years of age (max. reported age: 50 years). They have an elaborate courtship display followed by copulation and transfer of sperm via a modified urogenital papilla on the male. 
The females store sperm in the ovaries for several months until ovulation then fertilization of the eggs. They are viviparous. The larvae mature in shallow water. Reference:

LONGEVITY: up to 36 years




Ron’s flickr

Pacific Coast Fishes Eschmeyer and Herald 1983 Easton Press page 143

California Academy of Sciences, Steinhart Aquarium, California Rocky Coast 2017 


Probably More Than You Want To Know About The Fishes Of The Pacific Coast, Milton Love 1996 Really Big Press pages 171-173


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