Searobins live on the bottom in the saltiest portions of the estuary. Their finger-like pectoral rays are used for “walking” along the bottom and stirring up food. They eat fish, shrimp, clams and worms.
Searobins may reach a length of sixteen inches, but most we catch are much smaller. People don’t generally fish for them, though they are considered tasty.
Two species of searobin occur in the Hudson. The striped searobin has two narrow dark stripes running along each side from the head towards the tail. The northern searobin may be plain or mottled on its sides, but lacks distinct stripes. Its wing-like pectoral fins are not as long as those of the striped searobin, and its tail is slightly forked – the striped searobin has a squared-off tail.