Skip to main content Skip to main content

Black Sea Bass

Black Sea Bass

The Black Sea Bass

The Black Sea Bass, Centropristis striata

Color is generally black or charcoal, with blue highlights and tiny white spots or stripes on dorsal fin. Indistinct pattern sometimes present on sides, especially in small fish. In adults, the dorsal, anal and caudal fins may have feathery edges, and large males show a distinctive hump forward of the dorsal.


Recorded to at least 8 pounds, but individuals weighing more than one pound are now rather uncommon, and a 3- or 4-pounder is a rare giant. World record 10 pounds, 4 ounces; Florida record 5 pounds, 1 ounce.


Excellent. The flesh is mild and white but, sadly, most sea bass caught these days are too small to be worthwhile. The occasional outsize specimen should be filleted and skinned, but take care when doing so, because gill covers are sharp and so are the spines.


A hard and willing striker on both natural baits and a variety of artificial lures. Pulls hard for its size, but is too often caught on too heavy tackle.


Light spinning and baitcasting tackle are the best choices. Sea bass greedily hit live or dead shrimp and all sorts of cut baits, along with live small baitfish and artificial jigs and underwater plugs.They seem to be always hungry and willing to strike nearly anything they can grab.


Still Fishing; Casting; Trolling; Drifting.


Sea Bass Black Bass Blackfish Rockfish Talywag


A temperate fish, it is most common off Central and North Florida. Straggles to South Florida, but is absent from the Bahamas.


Widely at home, both offshore and inshore. Likes rocky areas, wrecks, channels with hard bottom, jetties, deep holes in grass flats. Larger fish now stay mostly well offshore.

Cobia and Seabass

FS member Nick had a successful day on the water

Port Canaveral Sea Bass

Captain Henry guided this young angler to a 20" black sea bass off Port Canaveral.

Summerland Key Black Sea Bass

FS Member rapchizzle posted this black sea bass, from off Summerland Key.

Black Sea Bass

Florida Sportsman forum member King_Me with two nice sea bass.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Popular Videos

New from Humminbird: Mega Live Imaging and the Apex Series

New from Humminbird: Mega Live Imaging and the Apex Series

Florida Sportsman editor Jeff Weakley gets all the details of Humminbirds latest buzzworthy products, including the award-winning Mega Live Imaging and the new Apex series multi-fuction displays with Bill Carson of Humminbird.


Florida's Phosphate Industry & Why it's Harmful to Us & Our Environment

Gil Smart, of Policy Director for Friends of the Everglades, explains how phosphate is processed and the troubling current “disposal” methods for millions of tons of radioactive phosphogypsum, the toxic byproduct of fertilizer production. Most recently, this mismanagement was at the detriment of our citizens and waterways after the disaster at Piney Point, where Florida officials permitted the dumping of over 200 million gallons of toxic process water directly into the Tampa Bay.

Project Dreamboat - All Out Albury, Ultimate Aluminum Skiff

Project Dreamboat - All Out Albury, Ultimate Aluminum Skiff

Today, on Florida Sportsman Project Dreamboa, Brian and the crew work to put custom touches on a 23' Albury Brothers; George LaBonte heads out with Todd Flis on his decked out Scandy White, an aluminum skiff built for the backcountry; and the team at MCU takes on restoring a 31' Contender that has seen Better Days.

See All Videos

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

Preview This Month's Issue

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Florida Sportsman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Florida Sportsman stories delivered right to your inbox.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Florida Sportsman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now