Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Gadiformes
(Cods) > Gadidae
(Cods and haddocks)
Etymology: Gadus: Latin, gadus = a fish, cod? (Ref. 45335); macrocephalus: macrocephalus meaning large head (Ref. 6885).
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; demersal; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243); depth range 0 - 1280 m (Ref. 50550), usually 100 - 400 m (Ref. 54440). Temperate; 6°C - 9°C (Ref. 11800); 63°N - 31°N, 119°E - 119°W (Ref. 54440)
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 67.0, range 40 - 85 cm
Max length : 119 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 40637); max. published weight: 22.7 kg (Ref. 27436); max. reported age: 25 years (Ref. 55701)
soft rays: 31 - 42;
Vertebrae: 49 - 55. Distinguished by the presence of 3 dorsal and 2 anal fins, a long chin barbel (about 3/4 as long as the eye diameter in young, longer than eye diameter in adults), and a space between the second and third dorsal fins that is shorter than the eye diameter (Ref. 27547). Lateral line with a prominent arch under the 1st and 2nd dorsal fins, is straight toward the tail, ending under the 3rd dorsal (Ref. 27547). Brown or gray dorsally, becoming paler ventrally; dark spots or vermiculating patterns on the sides (Ref.1371). Yellow color phases are known (Ref. 27547). Fins dusky; dorsal, anal and caudal fins with white edges that are wider on anal and caudal than on dorsal (Ref. 27547).
North Pacific: Yellow Sea to the Bering Strait, along the Aleutians, and south to about Los Angeles, USA. Rare in the southern part of its range.
Found mainly along the continental shelf and upper slopes (Ref. 1371). Form schools (Ref. 9988). They appear to be indiscriminate predators upon dominant food organisms present (Ref. 1371). Young probably feed on copepods and similar organisms (Ref. 27547). Adults feed on fishes, octopi, and large benthic and benthopelagic crustaceans (Ref. 1371); also worms. Marketed fresh and frozen for human consumption (Ref. 2850), and also dried or salted and smoked (Ref. 9988). Eaten steamed, fried, broiled, boiled, micro-waved and baked (Ref. 9988). Used in Chinese medicine (Ref. 12166). The Bering Sea and Aleutian Island Alaska (Pacific) Cod - Freezer Longline fishery of this species has been certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (http://www.msc.org/) as well-managed and sustainable (http://www.msc.org/html/content_1243.htm).
Cohen, D.M., T. Inada, T. Iwamoto and N. Scialabba, 1990. FAO species catalogue. Vol. 10. Gadiform fishes of the world (Order Gadiformes). An annotated and illustrated catalogue of cods, hakes, grenadiers and other gadiform fishes known to date. FAO Fish. Synop. 125(10). Rome: FAO. 442 p.
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: highly commercial; gamefish: yes
Estimates of some properties based on empirical models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.6250 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00794 (0.00664 - 0.00949), b=3.08 (3.03 - 3.13), based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 4.0 ±0.7 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (Musick et al. 2000 (Ref. 36717
); tmax=25; tm=3-8; K=0.11-0.27; Fec >1million).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (55 of 100) .