Alternate Names: Turbot or flounder.
Identification: Diamond turbot are (surprise) diamond shaped, and are a right-eyed member of the flatfish family. They have a small mouth with the dorsal branch of the lateral line extending more than half the distance to the caudal fin. Their coloring is dark gray, brown, or green, with bright blue round spots on the pigmented side; there is a yellow rim near the mouth on the blind side.
Size: To 18 inches; most caught off piers are under 12 inches.
Range: Gulf of California, and from Magdalena Bay, Baja California, to Cape Mendocino.
Habitat: Primarily found in bays, over sand and mud.
Piers: Most common at bay piers. Best bets: Bayshore Park Pier, Embarcadero "Marina" Park Pier, Shelter Island Pier, Oceanside Small Craft Harbor Pier, Dana Point Harbor Pier, Burton Chace Park Pier and Morro Bay T-Piers.
Bait and Tackle: Diamond turbot are small flatfish which prefer a small hook and live bait -- blood worms and ghost shrimp are the best. However, many are also caught on cut anchovy, strips of squid, and pieces of shrimp or clam. Hooks should not be larger than size 4. Although most of these fish are caught at bay piers they can also be caught at oceanfront piers, generally just out past the surf area.
Food Value: Excellent although this is another fish which may be unsafe to eat in areas with heavy pollution. Best fried or baked.
Comments: An attractive and good tasting little fish.