Shortfin Corvina, Cynoscion parvipinnis
The Shortfin Corvina, Cynoscion parvipinnis, whose common Spanish name is Corvina Aleta Corta, is a member of the Croaker or Sciaenidae Family, known collectively as “Berrugatas and Corvinas” in Mexico.
The Shortfin Corvina has an elongated robust body that is compressed with an oval cross-section. They are a silvery blue-gray color. The caudal and pectoral fins are dark and the pectoral fin has a dark axis. The head is long with a long oblique mouth that extends beyond the eye, a projecting lower jaw and the inside of the mouth is a yellow-orange; there is a dark crescent behind the front lower teeth, and the top jaw has a pair of large pointed canines; the inside of the gills are dark. They do not have chin barbells or pores on the chin. The anal fin has two spines and ten or eleven rays; the caudal fin is slightly concave; the dorsal fin has a long base with 7 or 8 spines and 1 spine and 21 to 23 rays; and, the pectoral fins are short. They have 7 to 9 lower gill rakers. They are covered with rough scales and the lateral line is arched anteriorly.
The Shortfin Corvina is found demersal over sandy bottoms along the shore and in the surf zone and inshore bays at depths up to 330 feet. They reach a maximum length of 60 cm (24 inches). They are very similar in appearance to a series of other croakers however the Shortfin has short pectoral fins (for which it is named) and uncolored fins. The Shortfin Covinas are found along the west coast of the Baja and throughout the Sea of Cortez; they are absent south of Mazatlán along the coast of the mainland. They are caught primarily on cut bait (clams, squid, mullet, etc.) with small hooks and bottom rigs. The Shortfin Corvina is viewed by locals to be excellent table fare.
Note: The Shortfin Corvina was introduced as a sportsfish into the Salton Sea in southern California in the early 1950s. Fish were able to survive for at least one year but were unable to reproduce and died out fairly quickly.