The Pacific halibut, Hippoglossus stenolepis, is a large flatfish found in the northern Pacific Ocean closely related to the Atlantic Halibut. Its range is from the Bering Sea, the Aleutian Islands and Hokkaidō, Japan to Baja California, Mexico. The largest reported specimen was 267 cm (8.75 ft) and they can reach an age of 42 years. They can be found on a range of bottoms. The young individuals are usually found close to the shore, whereas the older individuals prefer deeper water, especially in the winter. It is a voracious predator and feeds on fish, squid, crabs, clams and other invertebrates. It is treasured by fishermen because of its great size and tasty white meat.
Directed commercial fisheries usually use longline gear but halibut are also caught along with many other bottom-dwelling fish by trawlers. Longline fishers in the U.S. and Canada are required to use circle hooks. Pacific Halibut are also an important sport fish in Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and Alaska. Within Canada and the United States, Halibut quotas are set annually by the International Pacific Halibut Commission. Washington, British Columbian, and Alaskan native groups also have important halibut fisheries.
See the article on halibut for more details.
- ^ "Hippoglossus stenolepis". FishBase. Ed. Ranier Froese and Daniel Pauly. February 2006 version. N.p.: FishBase, 2006.
- Clover, Charles. 2004. The End of the Line: How overfishing is changing the world and what we eat. Ebury Press, London. ISBN 0-09-189780-7