The eating qualities of these fish is greatly improved if they are killed immediately by iki jime before placing them in an ice slurry after bleeding. Larger halibut can be dangerous and very difficult to handle and they should be stunned by a firm knock on the head first before attempting iki jime. Very large fish may need to be harpooned or shot in the head before bringing them into the boat.
- Atlantic Halibut are a right eyed flatfish, meaning that they have both eyes on the right side of the body - when viewed with their dorsal fin on top their head points to the right.
- This species is a very large flatfish, with a gray/brown upper side with mottling and a concave tail profile. The underside is typically white.
- Male Atlantic Halibut seldom exceed 6 feet (180 cm) long but females can exceed 9 feet (3 meters) long and 50 years old.
- Atlantic halibut are found on throughout the northern Atlantic Ocean, from Virginia on the east coast of the USA northwards to Canada, Greenland, Iceland, the UK and North Sea, Norway to Spitsbergen.
- They are typically found near the bottom over a variety of bottom types, at water depths between 60 and 1,000 ft (25 - 300 meters). Larger fish tend to frequent deeper waters and they have been found at depths up to 6000 ft (2000 meters). This species prefers water temperatures in the range 35-50ºF (2-10°C).
Fish Size Common Length:
Relatively common between 3 and 5 feet (0.9-1.5 meters) long. Maximum size over 9 feet (3 meters) and 700 pounds (320 kg).