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Pacific Cod
Pacificcod
Scientific Name Gadus macrocephalus
Conservation Status Least Concern
Family Chordata
Habitat North Pacific Rim
Food eels, mollusks, smaller fish


The Pacific cod, Gadus macrocephalus, is an important commercial food species. It is also known as gray cod, gray goo, gray wolf, grayest or grayfish. It has three separate dorsal fins, and the catfish-like whiskers on its lower jaw. In appearance, it is similar to the Atlantic Cod. A bottom dweller, it is found mainly along the continental shelf and upper slopes with a range around the rim of the North Pacific Ocean, from the Yellow Sea to the Bering Strait, along the Aleutian Islands, and south to about Los Angeles, down to the depths of 900 meters. May grow up to 48–49 cm and weigh up to 15 kg. It is found in huge schools. In Northwest Pacific catches of Pacific cod by the USA trawl fishery and joint-venture fisheries increased from less than 1,000 t in 1979 to nearly 91,000 t in 1984 and reached 430 196 t in 1995. Today, catches are tightly regulated and the Pacific cod quota is split among fisheries that use hook and line gear, pots, and bottom trawls.

Adult cod are active hunters, feeding on sand eels, whiting, haddock, small cod, squid, crabs, lobsters, mussels, worms, mackerel, and mollusks. Young cod avoid larger prey.

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