- Although the flesh of the almaco jack is considered quality table fare, the species has been associated with ciguatera poisoning, a seldom fatal stomach irritation.
- The almaco jack is susceptible to tapeworm parasites in the caudal peduncle area, but the meat can be eaten safely if affected portions are cut away.
Bluefish are a greenish-blue with a silvery-white belly, and dark fins, except for the pelvic fins, which are whitish in color, and a black spot at the base of the pectoral fins. They have long and slender bodies covered in small scales. Their large mouths are lined with exceptionally sharp teeth. There are two dorsal fins, one anal fin and a forked tail fin. The small front dorsal fin has 6 to 8 spines whereas the back dorsal fin has 1 and the anal has 2. The anal and the back dorsal both have 23- to 28 soft rays.
Bluefish are voracious feeders that hunt for prey in large schools. They will eat almost anything smaller than them including other bluefish. However, they typically feed mainly on baitfish, crustaceans and shrimp. When a food source is located, an entire school of bluefish will often go into a feeding frenzy. The larger the school of bluefish the smaller the fish will be, while a smaller school will have bigger bluefish.
Bluefish are found in the coastal regions of the Atlantic Ocean. They are commonly encountered from Maine to Argentina, and from the Mediterranean and Black Sea to South Africa. In the Western Hemisphere, they are more commonly seen along the mid-Atlantic U.S. states.
Bluefish can be found in warm to temperate waters and warmwater currents, preferably not less than 60 F, along rocky coasts and rough waters. The adult bluefish prefer deeper waters whereas the younger fish tend to inhabit shallower habitat, such as bays and estuaries. Winter brings the fish south to Florida, and in the spring they stay around Virginia, and they venture north to the New England states and Canada during summer.
- When bluefish are feeding heavily on a school of baitfish, a cucumber-like odor can be smelled near the surface.