California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Groundfish Identification

In order to abide by sport fishing regulations, recreational anglers must be able to identify their catch. However, differentiating between certain groundfish species, particularly rockfishes, can be difficult. The following guides will provide some basic tips on how to identify several species of finfish. When used in conjunction with the Ocean Sport Fishing regulations booklet, anglers will be better able to observe the laws that are in place to conserve and rebuild California's living marine resources.

Photograph provided by Patrick Kuhl

Photograph provided by Patrick Kuhl

Photograph provided by Blake Hawes