Hake Facts

Hake Facts
Hake is a type of marine fish that belongs to the cod family. There are 12 species of hake that can be found in Atlantic Ocean, eastern parts of Pacific Ocean and along the coast of New Zealand. Hake spends most of its life on a depth from 650 to 3.300 feet. Uncontrolled fishing (due to increased demand for hake in the industry of food) and predators are responsible for sharp decline in the number of hake in the ocean. Despite drastic reduction in the population size, hake is still not on the list of endangered species.
Interesting Hake Facts:
Hake can reach 14 to 42 inches in length and 1 to 8 pounds of weight.
Hake has silvery-gray scales on the back and white scales on the belly. Males and females look alike.
Hake has elongated body, large head and eyes and wide mouth filled with large, sharp teeth (arranged in two or three rows).
Hake resides in deeper waters during the day. It swims toward the surface of the water to find food during the night (nocturnal creature).
Hake is a carnivore (meat-eater). Young hakes eat cephalopods and crustaceans, while adults hunt and eat fish such as herring and pilchard. Hake is also known as "herring hake" because of its eating habits.
Adults also eat young members of their own species (phenomenon known as cannibalism).
Hake is very swift fish with huge appetite. Researchers once discovered 75 herrings in the stomach of a captured hake.
Natural enemies of hakes are Humboldt squids, sea lions, dolphins and dogfish sharks.
Hake often swims in small schools. Group of hakes sometimes forces herrings toward the shore to facilitate catching of prey in shallow water.
Hakes spend winter on the sea floor, usually on a depth of 450 to 600 feet. They do not tolerate temperature below 4 degrees of Celsius.
Spawning season of hakes usually takes place during the summer and autumn, depending on the species and geographic location.
Exact number of eggs that females can produce per season is unknown. Fertilized eggs float on the surface of the water until they hatch, usually 48 hours later. Larvae are slender and equipped with yolk sac which provides energy and ensures survival during the first few days of the life.
At the length of 0.8 to 0.9 inches, larvae look like miniature versions of adults. Young hakes usually inhabit sea floor on a depth of up to 650 feet, until they become strong enough to survive in deeper waters.
Hakes reach sexual maturity at the age of 3 (males) to 4 (females) years, at the length of 11 (males) to 13.4 - 17.5 (females) inches.
Hake can survive 14 to 15 years in the wild.

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