California Sheephead

Caliofornia Sheephead – photo copyright Tim Doherty

  • Did you know? All California Sheephead fish are born as females and most change sex from female to male later in life depending on environmental cues!
  • Sheephead appear to have been an important part of the diets of Native Americans and their remains have been found in middens or areas containing shells, bones, and other items indicative of human settlement.
  • Female sheephead are uniformly colored, a light pinkish red color with a white lower jaw. As they change to males their head and the back of their bodies turn black with a dark red midsection.
  • Do not disturb! Sheephead are only active during the day and at night they sleep in crevices or caves where they encase themselves in mucus cocoons. It’s believed that this prevents predators from detecting their scent so they can sleep without worrying about being eaten!