Rock Sea Bass: Centropristis philadelphica


  • Color olive-brown or bronze, with dark blotches forming vertical bars
  • Dark black blotch on middle of dorsal fin base
  • Tip of lower jaw purplish
  • Bright blue and orange stripes and markings on head and fins
  • Fully scaled nape
  • Tail tri-lobed in adults


Rock sea bass are found offshore often on sandy or muddy bottoms.


These fish spawn January through March.  Young adults are predominantly female and transform into males as they grow older.  The maximum size for rock sea bass is about 10 inches.

State Record:

This species is not currently eligible for a state record.

Fishing Tips and Facts:

Additional Information:

Rock sea bass are similar in appearance to bank sea bass C. ocyurus; and other Centropristis.

Image Credit: © Diane Rome Peebles

FWC Facts:
Just like fish, blue crabs use gills to breathe. But unlike fish, blue crabs can survive out of water for over 24 hours, as long as their gills are kept moist.

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