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Red Drum (Red-Fish) - Sciaenops oceliatus

Family Sciaenidae, DRUMS Other local names: redfish

Chin without barbels; copper-bronze body, lighter shade in clear waters; one to many spots at base of tail (rarely no spots); mouth horizontal and opening downward; scales large.

Similar fish: Black drum, Pogonias cromis.

Where found: Juveniles are an INSHORE fish, migrating out of the estuaries at about 30 inches (4 years) and joining the spawning population OFFSHORE.

Size: Common to 20 pounds.

Remarks: Red drum are an INSHORE species until they attain roughly 30 inches (4 years), then migrate to join the NEARSHORE population; spawning occurs from August to November in NEARSHORE waters; feeds on crustaceans, fish, and mollusks; longevity to 20 years or more.

Florida record: 52 lbs., 5 ozs. .