Both the Pacific gaper clam and the fat gaper clam may be found on California beaches statewide. They prefer fine sand or firm, sandy-mud bottoms, especially in bays, estuaries, and more sheltered outer coastal areas. Humboldt Bay, Bodega Bay, Tomales Bay, Drakes Estero, Elkhorn Slough, and Morro Bay are popular digging areas. Continue reading
Note: A new sub-bag limit of 5 black rockfish within the 10-fish RCG Complex bag limit is now in effect.
Black rockfish may be found north of Paradise Cove off southern California in a wide variety of habitats, including near the surface, on the bottom to depths of 1,200 ft., near rocky reefs, and in open water over deep banks or drop-offs. They frequently form loose schools 10 to 20 ft. above shallow (to 120 ft.) rocky reefs, in kelp beds, or in mid-water over deeper reefs (to 240 ft.), but individuals may also be found resting on rocky bottom. Continue reading
Four species of sanddab are found in California waters: Pacific sanddab, longfin sanddab, speckled sanddab, and gulf sanddab. Most sport anglers catch the two largest sanddabs, the Pacific and the longfin. The Pacific sanddab is the predominant species in the California catch, with some longfin sanddab caught in southern California. Longfin sanddabs range from Monterey Bay south, while Pacific sanddabs are caught statewide. Both species are found on muddy or sandy bottoms, generally at depths of 30 to 600 ft., although Pacific sanddab are most abundant between 120 and 300 ft. Continue reading
Pacific bonito may range throughout state waters, but they are most prevalent south of Point Conception. They sometimes arrive off California when the ocean warms in the spring, but during periods of colder than normal water temperatures they may never show up. Continue reading
Redtail surfperch occur from Monterey Bay north off California. They are the most frequently caught species of surfperch north of Bodega Bay. This species is predominantly a surf-dweller off sandy beaches, but has also been taken in rocky areas adjacent to beaches. They are common in estuaries and protected embayments during spawning season. Continue reading