Image from page 432 of “American food and game fishes : a popular account of all the species found in America, north of the equator, with keys for ready identification, life histories and methods of capture” (1902) – more Marine Life goodness curated by www.SardineRunPE.co.za
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Title: American food and game fishes : a popular account of all the species found in America, north of the equator, with keys for ready identification, life histories and methods of capture
Year: 1902 (1900s)
Authors: Jordan, David Starr, 1851-1931 Evermann, Barton Warren, 1853-1932
Publisher: New York : Doubleday, Page & Co.
Contributing Library: Robarts – University of Toronto
Digitizing Sponsor: University of Toronto
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e presence ofthat species. The bluefish is a pelagic or wandering fish, verycapricious in its movements, varying in numbers at particularlocalities in different years, and sometimes disappearing from cer-tain regions for many years at a time. The bluefish is a carnivorous animal of the most pronouncedtype. As Professor Baird has well said, there is no parallel tothe bluefish in point of destructiveness to the marine species onour coast. It has been likened to an animated chopping-machinethe business of which is to cut to pieces and otherwise destroyas many fish as possible in a given space of time. Going inlarge schools, in pursuit of fish not much inferior to themselvesin size, they move along like a pack of hungry wolves, destroy-ing everything before them. Their trail is marked by fragmentsof fish and by the stain of blood in the sea, as, when the fishis too large to be swallowed entire, the hinder portion will bebitten off and the anterior part allowed to float or sink. It has 320
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Common Bluefish been even maintained that such is the gluttony of this fish, thatwhen the stomach becomes full the contents are disgorged andthen again filled! It is certain that it kills more fish than itneeds or can use. The amount of food they consume or destroyis incredibly great. It has been estimated at twice the weightof the fish in a day, and one observer says that a bluefish willdestroy daily a thousand other fish. It has been estimated thatthere are annually on our coast from New Jersey to Mononomya thousand million bluefish averaging 5 or 6 pounds each inweight, and that these eat or destroy at the lowest estimate 10fish each every day, or a total of ten thousand millions of fishdestroyed every day. And as the bluefish remain on this coastat least 120 days, the total destruction amounts in round numbersto twelve hundred million millions of fish destroyed in a singleseason by this species. These would weigh at least three hun-dred thousand million pounds. And it must be reme
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