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greenstriped rockfish

The greenstriped rockfish (Sebastes elongatus) is also called cucumber, watermelon, poinsettia, chili, garnet. Older names include reina, serena, strawberry rockcod and striped rockfish. Their relatively slim body inspired the Latin name elongatus, meaning "elongated". Greenstriped rockfish are easily identified from other rockfishes by their distinct color pattern, which includes four green horizontal stripes. The background color for both adults and juveniles ranges from reddish to white when seen underwater. Areas of the body often turns red or orange after capture. Black patches can sometimes occur. Small venom-secreting glands have been discovered in the dorsal, pelvic, and anal spines. After maturity, females are larger than males at any given age. Both sexes are roughly the same size at maturity. This species can live to about 54 years and reach sizes of 15.6 in. (43 cm).

While being abundant from British Columbia to northern Baja California, the greenstriped rockfish can be found ranging from the Gulf of Alaska to central Baja California. They live at depths between 40 ft. and 1,632 ft. (12-495 m), and are usually found between 330 ft. and 825 ft. ( 100-250 m).  As they age, greenstriped rockfish move to deeper water. They are solitary and are often found resting on the seafloor and living among cobble, rubble, or mud. Greenstriped rockfish are also common around oil platform supports and adjoining mussel mounds. In areas off California, they have been observed with other rockfishes over rock outcrops. Krill, shrimp, calanoid copepods, fishes, squids, and gammarid amphipods are among the water column and bottom prey of greenstriped rockfish. Small greenstriped rockfish are eaten by chinook salmon.

About 11,000 to 295,000 eggs are produced by the females each season. Greenstriped rockfish release one brood of larvae, except off southern California, where females release two. Larval release varies, occurring generally from January to July, depending on geographic location. When released, larvae are about 0.2 in. (5 m) long.

From British Columbia, and sometimes off southeast Alaska, to at least southern California, greenstriped rockfish are often taken in commercial fisheries, usually by trawl. Gillnets and hook and line are also used. Although they are popular in the southern California Asian markets, the greenstriped rockfish are commonly discarded from the catch due to their small size. This is also true in the recreational fisheries, where they are occasionally taken, often in waters off from rocks.

Adapted from Love, M. 2002 Sebastes elongatus, p. 165-167. In M. S. Love, M. Yoklavich, and L. Thorsteinson, The rockfishes of the northeast Pacific. Univ. California Press.

greenstriped rockfish

AFSC Rockfish Guide