Revealed: the ups and downs of sablefish

Sablefish are a highly valuable commercial species that inhabit waters as deep as 750 m in the North-East Pacific. New pop-up satellite tag data now show that they do not stick to the bottom all the time: the majority of tagged fish migrate hundreds of meters up and down in the water column every day. The upward migration occurs at night and is likely because the sablefish are chasing their prey of fish, krill and squid, which are migrate vertically. The new work by NOAA scientist Frederick Goetz, and SAFS scientist Andy Jasonowicz and Prof. Steven Roberts, appears in Fisheries Oceanography.

Traces of the depth displayed by individual sablefish, showing day and night (gray) patterns, and periods in which the fish migrated upward during the night and remained on the bottom during the day.
Back to Top