On Exhibit: Sandy Shore & Aviary
to 14.5 inches (36.8 cm)
jacksmelt and grunion; family Atherinidae
British Columbia to Gulf of California
Called "topsmelt" for their habit of swimming up near the surface, these fish school near shore. There's safety in numbers, but topsmelt still fall prey to other fishes, birds and people.
Topsmelt are fished both commercially and by sport fishers.
Topsmelt can live in salt ponds twice as salty as the sea.