Fisheries Program
Northeast Region

Tautog (Tautoga onitis)

Life History

Adult tautog migrates from their winter locations along the coastline inshore during the spring for spawning. They spawn as a pair or in a group of males with a single active female. They begin spawning in May once water temperatures reach 48oF, peaking in June, and continuing through August. Juveniles are found in shallow areas. Adults can grow to more than nine inches in length.


Canada to South Carolina

Fun Facts

  • Often found in rock reefs and around piers.
  • Important recreational species with some commercial fishing south of Cape Cod.

More Information

Tautog species profile (pdf - 754KB)

Tautog (Tautoga onitis) - Life History and Habitat Requirements (pdf - 148KB)

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Last updated: December 16, 2011
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