Traceable Species


Blackfish, Chub, Tog, Oyster fish


Tautog is a popular recreational species also known as “blackfish” because of its dark mottled sides. The fish live in rocky inshore habitats and have powerful jaws with a set of molar-like teeth that allow them to eat shellfish. They are reported to grow up to three feet (0.9 m) and 25 lbs. (11 kg). Tautog range from Nova Scotia to Georgia along the eastern seaboard.

Tautog is a stout fish with an arched head, broad tail and distinctly thick, fleshy lips. Young blackfish are greenish in colour and darken with age. They have a rubbery skin with heavy slim which protects them in rocky habitats. The fish has a mild, distinct flavour and can be grilled, baked or broiled.


Tautog live in inshore habitats around rock outcropings, breakwaters, wrecks and other sheltered habitat. It is a highly territorial fish and only moves to slightly deeper water in the winter. This makes them easy to catch and susceptible to overfishing. With its strong jaw, it feeds on mussels and other shellfish. They reach sexual maturity around three to four years of age and are slow growing living up to 40 years. The fish spawn offshore in the late spring and early summer. Eggs hatch in the ocean and then juveniles find protected sheltered waters hiding in seaweed, eelgrass and other marine vegetation. Although they range along the Northeast Atlantic coast, the greatest abundance is between Cape Cod and Chesapeake Bay. 

Food Info Tautog


  • Colour: off-white
  • Texture: medium flakes and firm texture
  • Flavour: mild, but distinctive with earthy notes
  • Perfect serve: A versatile fish, tautog can be baked, grilled, broiled and blackened. Try marinating the fish for 15 minutes in a ginger teriyaki sauce and then broiling it for 10 minutes per inch of thickness.
Species Range
Tautog range Source:
Oyster fish
These crabs mate at the time of maturity, which is approximately 3 years of age. Females are smaller than males; this is because the development of reproductive tissues required more energy for females, leaving less energy available for continued body growth. They grow through a process known as molting—regularly shedding their shell and growing a new, larger one. They continue to molt and grow after they have reached sexual maturity. During the breeding season, the crabs leave their borrows in a phenomenon characterized by mass mate-searching events. Once mating/fertilization has occurred, females spawns in the water. The larvae released during the rainy season develop in offshore waters and return to coastal waters five to eight weeks after larval release.
Mangrove crabs are important fishery resources in all Brazilian coast, mainly in the north and northeast where many fishermen depend upon their catch. In addition to its social and economic importance, the mangrove crab is a “keystone” species in ecosystem, they playing an important role in the processes of nutrient cycling and energy transfer.

Fishing Methods

{'fisheries': [<License: Tautog by Bottom Trawl (USA)>], 'gear': <Gear: Bottom Trawl>}

Bottom Trawl

This fishery uses a large cone-shaped net that is dragged along the seafloor to catch fish. As the net is towed at low speed, hydrodynamic forces push two "otter boards" outwards opening the mouth of the net and capturing fish in its path.


Featured Harvester Bernie Berry

Mangrove Crab Harvester

Canavieiras, Brazil

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