Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Scorpaeniformes
(Scorpionfishes and flatheads) > Sebastidae
(Rockfishes, rockcods and thornyheads) > Sebastinae
Etymology: Sebastes: Greek, sebastes = august, venerable (Ref. 45335); melanops: From the Greek melas and ops meaning 'black' and 'face' (Ref. 27436). More on author: Girard.
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 0 - 366 m (Ref. 6885), usually 183 - 274 m (Ref. 6885). Temperate, preferred 10°C (Ref. 107945); 62°N - 22°N, 170°E - 110°W
Eastern Pacific: Amchitka Island, Aleutian Islands, Alaska to Paradise Cove, Baja California, Mexico.
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 40.2, range 30 - 42 cm
Max length : 63.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 27437); max. published weight: 4.8 kg (Ref. 2850); max. reported age: 50 years (Ref. 39247)
(total): 13 - 14;
soft rays: 7 - 9;
Vertebrae: 26. Head spines weak to very weak - nasals present, preocular and postocular spines usually absent, supraocular, tympanic, coronal, parietal and nuchal spines absent (Ref. 27437). Symphyseal knob very weak or absent (Ref. 27437). Eyes moderately large (Ref. 27437). Anal fin profile rounded or with greater portion slanted posteriorly (Ref. 27437). Posterior margin of caudal fin indented (Ref. 27437). Dark grey to black with light grey mottling dorsally, lighter ventrally (Ref. 27437). Branchiostegal rays: 7 (Ref. 36715).
Found near rocky reefs in shallow water and in open water over deep banks (Ref. 2850). Adults live both off and on bottom (Ref. 2850). Juveniles are pelagic (Ref. 36715). Form schools (Ref. 2850). Feed on fishes (Ref. 27302). Viviparous, with planktonic larvae (Ref. 36715). Young are important prey species for other fishes, marine mammals and birds. Excellent food fish (Ref. 27436).
Eschmeyer, W.N., E.S. Herald and H. Hammann, 1983. A field guide to Pacific coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 336 p. (Ref. 2850)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 109396)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial; gamefish: yes; aquarium: public aquariums
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 4.4 ±0.0 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (tm=7.5; K=0.14; tmax=50).
Prior r = 0.27, 2 SD range = 0.11 - 0.66, log(r) = -1.31, SD log(r) = 0.46, Based on: 1 K, 10 tgen, 1 tmax, 3 Fec records
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): High to very high vulnerability (66 of 100) .