This book is a given for recreational and commercial fishermen as well as anyone who loves the outdoors! Since most anglers identify their fish by reviewing illustrations rather than using scientific keys, the authors have succeeded in making fishing easier by providing superb illustrations and detailed diagnostics for fish identification. A valuable, one-stop reference tool for everyday anglers, fisheries experts, biologists, and outdoors writers, this guide includes intensively researched information on 207 species of saltwater fish, essential data on each speciesí habitat, identification, typical size, and food value. By Jerald Horst & Mike Lane, illustrated by Duane Raver. 207 species.
Gulfwide, but more common in the central and northern Gulf of Mexico waters. In the Florida Keys it is replaced by the yellowmouth grouper. It seems to prefer low-profile reef bottoms, or bottoms encrusted with living organisms (live bottom), although they are occasionally caught at high-profile structure such as offshore oil and gas platforms. It is most common at depths of 75 to 250 feet.
Identification & Biology :
Scamp have a speckled and dotted body coloration and usually have some yellow color on the corners of and inside their mouth. They are most easily identified by the lyre-shaped tail having its fin rays extended into streamers. It very closely resembles the yellowmouth grouper, but has less yellow pigment in and near the mouth. The major distinguishing feature between the two is that in the yellowmouth grouper, the front and rear nostrils are the same size, while in scamp the rear nostril is larger. There is some disagreement among scientists about whether these are two different species or the same species.
Scamp can live up to 25 years and at least some begin spawning at age 3 and 16 inches in length. Spawning takes place in April and May, with eggs and larvae being free-floating, until the young settle out to the bottom on reef-type habitats. Scamp feed day and night, targeting crabs, shrimp and fish. By 10 years of age, they average 26 inches in length and over 8 pounds in weight. By age 20, they average 35 inches long and 20 pounds.
Scamp will grow to over 20 pounds, but the average catch is under 10 pounds.
Food Value :
Description by: Jerald Horst, Associate Professor, Fisheries - LSU AgCenter