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Southern Kingfish: Menticirrhus americanus

Appearance:

  • Southern Kingfish have an inferior mouth with a single barbel on the chin
  • Grayish brown or copper colored above with silvery sides
  • Dark mottling or 7 to 8 diagonal dusky bars or blotches on each side, NOT forming clear V-shaped marks
  • Scales on chest the same size as those on side

Habitat:

Near shore, generally in the surf, also in shallow coastal waters with a muddy-sand bottom as well as high salinity bays and estuaries along the coast.  

Behavior:

Thought to prefer high wave action areas such as sand bars where the crashing waves dislodge and suspend small crabs and other small crustaceans. 

Additional Information

Fishing Tips and Facts: Longevity is 4 to 6 years. Sizes up to 15 inches and 2 pounds. Prey mostly on benthic invertebrates, such as shrimp and small crabs.

Also commonly known as whiting

Other similar species include the Gulf Kingfish and Northern Kingfish

 


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FWC Facts:
Right whales can be individually identified by the pattern of raised patches of roughened skin on their head, called callosities.

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