The black sea bass, also known as sea bass and blackfish, is a type of Grouper (Serranidae) found more commonly in northern than in southern ranges. Known as a bottom species, they are usually found around wrecks, reefs, piers, breakwaters, and over beds of shells, coral, rock, etc.
Black sea bass, as their name indicates, are usually black. Like many other fish, they have the ability to change color to blend with their environment. They can be brown, black, gray, or even indigo blue. Their most distinctive feature is their skin, which resembles a fishnet pattern because of the darker color around the outside of their scales contrasting with the lighter color under the scales.
The average sea bass weighs around 1 1/2 pounds with the largest recorded at 9 pounds 8 ounces. Any sea bass weighing 5 pounds or more is considered big. They appear at the Jersey Shore in May, leaving in late October or November.
Sea bass are a delicious fish. The meat is firm, white, and mild-flavored.
Scientific Terms and Additonal Information:
Genus and Species: Centropristis striata
Description: Bottom fish, black to brown in color, featuring a moderately stout body, high back, flat-topped head, and moderately pointed snout.
Also called: black bass, rockfish, blackfish, and talywag.