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Vermilion Rockfish Sebastes miniatus


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Vermilion Rockfish
credit: Chad King

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Family: Scorpaenidae, Scorpionfishes view all from this family

Description Sebastes miniatus is a species of rockfish known by the common names vermilion rockfish, red snapper, and red rock cod. It is native to the waters of the Pacific Ocean off western North America from Baja California to Vancouver Island.

The body of the vermilion rockfish is moderately deep and compressed. The upper profile of the head is somewhat curved; the mouth is large, with the lower jaw slightly projecting. The color is bright red on the body and fins; many with black and gray mottling on back and sides. On fish shorter than 12 inches (30 cm) the mottling is much more apparent and the fins are often edged with black. The yelloweye and canary rockfishes are similar in appearance to the vermilion, but the bottom of their lower jaws is scaleless and feels smooth to the touch. The vermilion rockfish has scales on the bottom of the lower jaw which make it rough to the touch.

Dimensions Up to 30" (76 cm).

Warning Mildly venomous spines in this fish's dorsal and anal fins can cause painful wounds.

Habitat Ocean or bay shallows, Open ocean.

Range California, Northwest, Western Canada.