Last modified: August 25, 2018

Fish Flatfish

Longfin Sanddab

Lefteye Flounders: Family Bothidae

Species: Citharichthys xanthostigma (Gilbert, 1890); from the Greek word citharichthys (a fish that lies on its ribs or side) and xanthostigma (yellow colored with a pointed bone—referring to the long fins).

Alternate Names: Sanddab, soft flounder, Catalina sanddab. Called lenguado alón in Mexico.

Identification: Sanddabs are in the left-eye flounder family. Longfin sanddab have very long pectoral rays—longer than the head. Their coloring is brown with a black pectoral fin.

Size: To 10 inches; most caught from piers are under 8 inches.

Range: Costa Rica to Monterey Bay.

Habitat: Found from shallow to deeper water, primarily over sand.

Piers: Usually found in deeper water. Best bets: Balboa Pier, Newport Pier, Redondo Beach Pier, Redondo Sportfishing Pier and the Port Hueneme Pier.

Shoreline: Rarely caught from shore.

Boats: A small sanddab sometimes taken from boats

Food Value: Limited because of their small size.

Bait and Tackle: Use light tackle and fish on the bottom with small size 8 hooks. Longfin sanddab will hit most baits but prefer small strips of squid, pieces of anchovy, or worms.

Comments: Longfin sanddab are a small species that is infrequently taken. However, at times schools will appear near a pier and a considerable number will be taken in a short time.

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