Seasons in the Sea - A month-by-month guide to Central California sea life
Month:

Seasonal activities of selected
fishes, sharks, and rays on the Central California Coast

Jump to:        Fishes             Sharks and rays


Key to table shading:
Mating Eggs hatching/Releasing larvae Planktonic stage Settling

Fishes - yearly timelines

Jan/Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov/Dec
California sardine  (Sardinops sagax))
Begin peak
spawning
Adults
from S.Cal
Migrate
northward
Migrate
northward
End peak
spawning
Migrate
southward
North Pacific Hake  (Merluccius productus))
Spawn in
deep water
Spawning Migrate
northward
Migrate
northward
Migrate
southward
California Anchovy  (Engraulis mordax) [Ocean spawning]
Early
spawning
Early
spawning
Spawning
migrate N
Arrive
MBay
Migrate
northward
California Anchovy  (Engraulis mordax) [Estuary spawning]
Congregate
off estuaries
Congregate
off estuaries
Enter
estuaries
Peak young
in estuaries
Vermillion rockfish  (Sebastes miniatus)
Larvae
in plankton
Larvae
settle
Mating Larvae
released
Blue rockfish  (Sebastes mystinus)
Larvae
released
In plankton Juveniles
to kelp
Juveniles
to kelp
Mating
Lingcod  (Ophiodon elongatus)
Eggs
hatch
Larvae
in plankton
Juveniles
in plankton
Juveniles
toward shore
Juveniles
to kelp beds
Nest-building,
egg-laying
Nesting in
tidepools
Cabezon  (Scorpaenichthys marmoratus)
Brooding,
hatching
Eggs
hatch
Larvae in
plankton
Juveniles
at sea
Juveniles
to kelp beds
Juveniles
to kelp beds
Mating,
nest-building
Nesting in
tidepools
China rockfish
(Sebastes nebulosus)
Canary rockfish
(Sebastes pinniger)
Chilipepper
(Sebastes goodei)
("Winter-spawning" rockfish)
Larvae
released
Larvae
released
Juveniles
in plankton
Settle
to seafloor
Settle
to seafloor
Mating Mating
Olive rockfish
(Sebastes serranoides)
Yellowtail rockfish
(Sebastes flavidus)
Black rockfish
(Sebastes melanops)
Larvae
released
Larvae
released
Larvae
in plankton
Juveniles
to kelp
Gopher rockfish
(Sebastes carnatus)
Black and yellow rockfish
(Sebastes chrysomelas)
Kelp rockfish
(Sebastes atrovirens)
("Spring-spawning" rockfish)
Mating Larvae
released
Peak
spawning
Larvae
in plankton
Juveniles to
kelp canopy
Juveniles
to bottom
Migrate
offshore
 
Jan/Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov/Dec

 


 

Sharks and rays - yearly timelines

Jan/Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov/Dec
White shark   (Carcharodon carcharias)
Females
leave
Congregate
offshore
Early arrivals Hunt
near shore
Hunt
near shore
Congregate
at rookeries
Males
leave
Leopard shark   (Triakis semifasciata)
Young born
in estuaries
Adults leave
estuaries
Juveniles
in estuaries
Peak juveniles
in estuaries
Adults
to estuaries
Bat ray   (Myliobatis californica)
Adults to
estuaries
Adults to
estuaries
Young
born
Mating Adults leave
estuaries
Adults leave
estuaries
 
Jan/Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov/Dec
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