Rockfish live in a variety of habitats. Some live on rocky reefs or seafloors in nearshore shallow waters. Others live on the deep seafloor or in the water column. In giant kelp forests, rockfish hover motionless under the kelp canopy, buoyed by their air bladders. Some species rest on rocks at the bottom of the kelp forest, with creatures like sea cucumbers and abalone.

Rockfish are one of the longest-living fishes, possibly living to 200 years old in the Gulf of Alaska.

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