One of the most common fish species that we see on our dive tours is the Copper rockfish, Sebastes caurinus. Copper rockfish range from a dark brown to a lighter reddish brown with a copper to yellowish mottling on its sides. The lighter stripe usually runs down the rear half of the lateral line while the more prominent darker band slopes downward from the eye. Copper rockfish range from 12-24 inches in size, and can live for 40 or more years. Because Copper rockfish do not begin to reproduce until 3-7 years old, spearfishing or commercial fishing can seriously deplete its numbers.
Copper rockfish can be found from Alaska all the way down to Baja California. Divers can see the Copper rockfish as shallow as 15-20 feet, but they can live all the way down to 600 feet. Adults usually rest on rocks or near reef structures, and stay close to their chosen home for their entire lives. Juveniles can be observed by divers in eel grass beds near the end of a dive, or during a safety stop. Occasionally, we have even seen Copper rockfish living inside the dens of Giant Pacific Octopus.
While we see many Copper rockfish during our dives, they are an interesting and important part of the underwater ecosystem. To see Copper rockfish, book your dive online today, or contact us for more information.