Pacific Butterfish – Peprilus simillimus. Pacific butterfish is also known as the Pacific or California pompano. The butterfishes come from the Stromateidae family.

Identifying Characteristics

The Pacific butterfish has a classic shape: roundish compressed body, no pelvic fins, and a deeply forked tail. They have small mouths and large eyes, and have blunt heads. They have a silver green or silver blue coloring on top that fades to silver on the bottom. Pacific butterfish can reach up to 14 inches in length, maturing at about 5 1/2 inches.

Range and Habitat

They range from Queen Charlotte Sound, British Columbia, to central Baja and Gulf of California. Pacific butterfish like sandy shore areas, from the nearshore areas to about 100 miles offshore, and are popularly caught on piers. They travel in schools.

Market Forms

Pacific butterfish are commonly caught at the pier or jetty. They are a great eating fish and valuable commercially.

Pacific Butterfish Range

Pacific Butterfish Range. Image courtesy USGS.gov.

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