- Black sea bass have dangerously sharp spines on their dorsal fin that can puncture human skin.
- The all-tackle world record for black sea bass is 9 pounds, 8 ounces.
- When hooked in deep water and brought quickly to the surface, a black sea bass will often regurgitate its stomach contents.
A long and slender specimen, the ladyfish has a fine-scaled silver body with a blue-green tone on the upper dorsal area. Their appearance somewhat resembles the popular tarpon, but ladyfish are much smaller (they are related, however). It has a small, pointed head with a large terminal mouth. The pectoral fins are located extremely low on the body and its single dorsal fin is located in the middle of its back, beginning just behind the front of the pelvic fin. The anal fin is centrally located between the dorsal fin and a deeply forked tailfin.
Ladyfish are found in the western Atlantic from Cape Cod and Bermuda to the northern Gulf of Mexico and south to Brazil. They are more common in waters in the Caribbean and around southern Florida.
The ladyfish is an inshore fish that prefers warm, shallow water over the sandy or muddy bottoms of inlets, bays and brackish estuaries. Occasionally, the ladyfish, which often forms in large schools, will enter freshwater such as canals and tidal pools.
Though it has not been documented when ladyfish reproduction occurs, their spawning takes place offshore where the eggs are scattered and externally fertilized. Upon hatching, the larvae drift inshore where they shelter in the shallow coastal waters to grow.
Ladyfish feed on smaller fish and crustaceans and are frequently observed in schools pursuing their prey near the surface of the water.
Although the ladyfish is not actively pursued for eating, due to its many bones and mushy flesh, it is still a prized fish to many anglers for their angling quality and tendency to be caught in great numbers. Ladyfish are well known for their frequent and spectacular jumps. They may also skip along the water after being hooked, hence the nickname skipjack.
Lighter gear is often used to get the most sport out of these fish. They can be caught by boat in inshore areas, from bridges and piers, and in the surf. A variety of live and cut natural baits, including small fish and shrimp, work well, as well small jigs, plugs and spoons. In cases when ladyfish are in feeding frenzy, just about any type of small bait or lure will catch fish. A light wire leader should be used to reduce the active fishs wearing of the line. Ladyfish, if caught and properly stored, make good bait for bigger game fish such as king mackerel and barracuda.
- The all-tackle world record for a ladyfish is 5 pounds, 14 ounces.
- Ladyfish are sometimes confused with bonefish. However, the lower jaw of the ladyfish is much bigger than that of the bonefish, whose upper jaw extends past the lower. Also, ladyfish will leap in the air when caught, as opposed to the bonefish, which tends to make long runs along the bottom.