Sebastes Flavidus



Onshore, Offshore, Reef, Wreck

3 - 9 pounds

11" - 26"

Yellowtail Rockfish 

Also Known As: yellowtail seaperch, rock cod, Pacific snapper

Yellowtail Rockfish (Sebastes flavidus) Fish Description

The Yellowtail Rockfish (Sebastes flavidus) is a type of rockfish found near the coasts of the North-eastern Pacific—from Alaska to Southern California. Through the name alone, one can easily surmise that the fish’s caudal or tail fin is yellow. Its other fins may have the same yellowish tint but tend to be a bit darker. Its long dorsal fin that stretches from the base of the head to the tail base has two sections with the front part being spiny, while the back part a bit roundish. Its fusiform body is elongated and compressed with the top part greenish-brown in color, which gradually fades to white as it reaches the belly. There’s also a visible lateral line from the head to the tail and some dull yellow blotches on the top part of its body.

The Yellowtail Rockfish is viviparous, which means its offspring develops inside the female and gives birth to love ones. Their young are pelagic, often feeding on planktons and other microorganisms living in the pelagic zone. As they reach their juvenile stage, they would then settle to the bottom of the water, typically near shore or in estuaries, from which they would stay until they reach adulthood in about three to five years.

The Yellowtail Rockfish is a carnivore and mainly eats small crustaceans, small squids, and small fishes. Although they often hunt in the water column, they would also occasionally go deeper onto the seabed to forage for food. Another unique thing about this fish is that, unlike other rockfish species that suffer barotrauma, the Yellowtail can release gas from their swim bladders, thus, they can handle the sudden pressure change when they are brought or when they swim closer to the surface.


Interesting Facts about the Yellowtail Rockfish

  • Yellowtail Rockfish can only grow as much as a little more than two feet long, weighing at nine pounds at a maximum.