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The History of Cod…

Cod are amazing fish. Flatly put, it’s probably the most important fishery in American history without a competitor for the title even in sight. Of the historic American fisheries, none has brought more wealth or fish to market than cod. Much like the story of the bluefish, the cod’s tale is one of ups and downs. Unlike bluefish, the cod’s story is also one of freedom.

The fish we call cod (and “codkin”) are wide and diverse, the largest of which is, of course, the cod. This group includes Pacific and Atlantic cod, all species of hake, pollock, haddock and ling. Yes, Ol’ Yellow Lips makes it onto this most reverent list. The cod itself is split into different names for the different regions where it is fished, though the Atlantic Cod is still the species to which they all belong. Though the regional names are just that, they are representative of different populations of cod throughout the nearshore Atlantic. Such populations include Native Cod, caught dominantly around the red corals in our cold, deep-water reef systems, and Pasture Cod that roam the sandy bottoms off New Jersey.


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