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common name for any of several species of carnivorous, spiny-finned fishes of the family Hexagrammidae, common in the Pacific Ocean, especially in the waters N of Monterey, Calif. Greenlings have fleshy flaps on the top of the head. They are found in kelp beds and among rocks, and are also called rock trout. Several species grow to a length of 20 in. (50 cm) and are valued as game fishes. Most important of the greenlings is the Okhotsk atka mackerel, found in the Sea of Okhotsk; it is a handsome food fish with striking vertical stripes, as is the closely related atka mackerel of Alaska. The ling cod, found from Alaska to Baja California, is a popular game and food fish. The kelp greenling is unusual in that the male and female exhibit different coloration and markings, a rare phenomenon among fish. Greenlings are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Actinopterygii, order Scorpaeniformes, family Hexagrammidae.
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Greenlings (primarily kelp greenling [Hexagrammos decagrammus]) accounted for the majority of sightings (35% of total abundance) and their presence did not differ among months (Table 2).
Paternal defense, cannibalism and polygamy: factors influencing the reproductive success of painted greenling (Pisces, Hexagrammidae).
Of those, only two can be shallow nearshore rockfish, three cabezon at least 15 inches long, two kelp or rock greenlings at least 12 inches, two lingcod at least 24 inches, five sculpin at least 10 inches and five sheephead at least 12 inches.
Rock fishermen like to try their luck for greenlings and surfperch (a California fishing license is required).
The agency states that the contaminated fish traveled from waters near the nuclear plant, as other greenlings caught 20 km off the coast had low levels of radioactive cesium.
The black and blue rockfish are larger and more abundant, the lingcod population appears to have tripled, and greenlings are larger and more prevalent.