The term “rockfish” encompasses several related species of Alaskan whitefish that live near the seabed, though not on the bottom itself.
The best-known species is the Pacific Perch (Sebastes alutus), but there are many other species of rockfish: northern (S. polyspinis), dusky (S. ciliatus), canary (S. pinniger), widow (S. entomelas), shortraker (S. borealis), rougheye (S. aleutianus), thornyhead (S. altivelis), among others.
Adults live mainly offshore, on the outer part of the continental shelf and on the upper part of the continental slope at depths of 150 to 420 meters.
They tend to occupy shallower waters in summer, probably to feed, and deeper waters in winter, where they probably spawn.
Many rockfish feed on euphausiacea, prawns, and other crustaceans, as well as deep-sea fish.
All species of rockfish are slow growing, their natural mortality is low, they reach maturity at a relatively advanced age and can reach a very old maximum age (84 years for the Pacific redfish in the Gulf of Alaska).
Alaska is home to many species of rockfish, download the PDF to discover all of them.