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Acadian Redfish Sebastes fasciatus


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Acadian Redfish
credit: Steven G. Johnson/CCSA

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Family: Scorpaenidae, Scorpionfishes view all from this family

Description The Acadian redfish (Sebastes fasciatus) is a marine deep-water fish belonging to the family Sebastidae.

Found in the northern Atlantic Ocean, the Acadian redfish lives in depths of 70–592 meters. S. fasciatus is colored reddish-orange, can live up to 50 years or more and reaches lengths up to 20 inches. They feed on a variety of crustaceans, mollusks, and smaller fish. In addition, the Acadian redfish mates in the fall to late winter through means of "ovoviviparous reproduction" with around "15,000 20,000 extruded larvae produced per female" per season. Due to its slow growth rate, low fecundity, harmless nature, tendency to "hit almost any bait," and being considered a great food fish, the redfish has become endangered.

The Acadian redfish is extremely similar in appearance to the deepwater redfish Sebastes mentella. The two species can be distinguished by the number of soft rays in the anal fin, internal examination of the gas bladder, or by genetic testing.

Dimensions Up to 12" (30 cm).

Warning This fish must be handled with extreme care; it has skin-piercing, venomous fin spines.

Habitat Ocean or bay shallows.

Range New England.