Curtin, Charles B. Department of Biology, Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska.
Last reviewed:October 2019
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A predatory and voracious species of fish in the order Perciformes that ranges throughout the tropical and temperate seas of the world, except for the eastern and central Pacific areas. A single species, Pomatomus saltatrix (see illustration), makes up the family Pomatomidae. The bluefish, also known as the skipjack, is bluish-gray in color, with an average length of 2 ft (60 cm) and an average weight of approximately 5 lb (2.3 kg). The mouth is large with sharp, strong teeth. Bluefish form schools and migrate north along the Atlantic coast, following schools of smaller fish, upon which they prey. The bluefish continue to kill and destroy their prey even after feeding. By about June, they reach the New England coast, where the young can be found in estuaries and bays. See also: Marine fisheries; Perciformes
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