Cobia facts

• The scientific name for cobia is (Rachycentron Canadum). They are considered the only living species in their family (Rachycentridae) and have no close relatives.

• Cobia are highly migratory with a life span of 10 to 15 years, growing as much 13 pounds a year.

• Cobia are often mistaken for sharks. But on closer inspection their flat heads and a dark lateral stripe and white belly make the easy to distinguish from other species.

• According to a Mississippi study that tagged and released over 10,000, cobia often travel hundreds of miles in short periods. The longest travel distance recorded was 1,300 nautical miles. A fish tagged off the Chandeleur Islands near Louisiana was recaptured 2 1⁄2 years later off South Carolina. Two other Cobias traveled more than 1,200 miles. One of those was tagged off Pensacola Beach, Fla., was caught near South Carolina. The other was tagged in Louisiana and caught 238 days later in Daytona Beach, Fla. And another, tagged near Port Canaveral, Fla., traveled 700 miles arriving in Aplachee Bay, Fla., in only 46 days. This fish averaged more than 15 miles a day.

• Cobia are aggressive opportunistic feeders. They chase food from the surface to the bottom, eating just about anything. In a study conducted at Chesapeake Bay, researchers examining the stomachs of 78 Cobia found 28 different species of animals.

• They are open-water fish and found almost worldwide in tropical, subtropical and warm temperate waters.

• Cobia have a penchant for hanging around buoys, pilings, markers, sea turtles, manatees or almost any floating object.

• The IGFA-All-Tackle world record Cobia weighed in at 135 pounds, 9 ounces caught on July 9, 1985 by Robert Goulding in Shark Bay, Australia.