The weakfish, (Cynoscion regalis), is a sleek-bodied fish with a dark olive back, iridescent blue and copper sides, and a silvery white belly. Adults have yellow fins, two large canine teeth in the upper jaw, and small dark spots on the upper part of the body that sometimes form diagonal lines. Weakfish usually grow to about 12 to 18 inches, but can be as much as 3 feet long and weigh anywhere from 6 to 18 pounds.
Weakfish Feeding Habits:
Weakfish feed on small schooling fish, such as anchovies and menhaden. They will also prey upon crabs, shrimps, mollusks and large zooplankton. The fact that they have such a broad diet makes weakfish fishing quite challenging at times. Most anglers feel that a trophy size weakfish is anything over 10lbs. Weakfish population levels are very cyclical. The success of their breeding effort depends greatly upon the availability of certain prey and the relative absence of certain predators.
Weakfish spawn from April through August in nearshore waters near the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. Larvae spend the late summer drifting through the waters of the lower Bay, gradually finding their nursery areas in low-salinity rivers. Once they have grown to about 4.7 inches long, young weakfish begin to swim towards saltier waters, eventually leaving the Bay by early winter.
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