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Species Information

Scientific Name:Archosargus probatocephalus
Common Names:sheepshead, sheephead, sheeps head, sheep head
Environment:Inshore, Nearshore, Surf
Ideal Temp:60-65°F (15-18°C)

About Sheepshead

The sheepshead, Archosargus probatocephalus, is a marine fish that grows to 30 in (760 mm), but commonly reaches 10 to 20 in. It is deep and compressed in body shape, with 5 to 6 dark bars on the side of the body over a gray background. It has sharp dorsal spines. Its diet consists of oysters, clams, and other bivalves, and barnacles, fiddler crabs, and other crustaceans. It has a hard mouth, with several rows of stubby teeth, which help crush the shells of prey.

Sheepshead are found in waters ranging from Nova Scotia to the Gulf of Mexico, and southward to Brazil. Populations of sheepshead occurring in South America and in parts of the Gulf of Mexico are regarded as two separate subspecies. Sheepshead are year-round residents from about South Carolina through the Gulf of Mexico, and most abundant to the north between 
April through November. They are found in coastal waters, bays and estuaries, and are tolerant of low salinity brackish waters as well. Sheepshead are most frequently encountered near some type of structure like pilings, jetties, oyster reefs, artificial reefs and coastal live bottom.

Sheepshead Fishing

World Record:9.63 kg (21 lb 4 oz) New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
# Fish Caught:889677 documented in database.
Earliest Record:1/1/1830 12:00:00 AM and located at 27.83076, -97.06170.
Latest Record:4/25/2024 4:05:00 PM and located at 30.66968, -81.46259.
Common Techniques:Bottom Fishing
Popular Lure Types:Bottom Rig
Fishing Spots:1721 Sheepshead fishing spots.

Latest Sheepshead Fishing Reports and Spots

Ups and Downs - 4/27/2024 3:52:00 PM

 My theory this time of year is that the water temperature rises with the air temps and it falls with the air temps and the fish get confused.  (View)

Fish Bite Better Today - 4/25/2024 4:05:00 PM

  All week long we've had beautiful days today included but for the most part we had to really work to get some fish in the boat. But today we (View)

Float 'em by the oysters - 4/17/2024 6:27:00 PM

 I guess the Chamber of Commerce ordered up a week of fine weather 'cause today was another outstandingly beautiful day!  I met Derek Wilson an (View)

She Should Have Backed Away From The Table - 4/10/2024 5:20:00 PM

 Storm a'coming tomorrow!  But we the water was like glass this morning when I launched at Sawpit Creek and after meeting Allen Webb we made a (View)

:Handicapped from the Start - 4/4/2024 4:46:00 PM

After I got the boat ready and was having a cup of coffee I saw AIBT's Facebook post that they were out of live shrimp and minnows and I knew w (View)

Out of Nowhere - 4/5/2024 7:50:00 PM

I wrapped my week up fishing south meeting the Williams family - John and Mary Margaret and their kids Hadden and Ruth down at the Sawpit Creek (View)

Dara's Super Duper - 4/1/2024 4:31:00 PM

 Back at it today fishing south early this morning. I had met William and Dara Blalock out at Goffinsville as the sun came up and we made a qui (View)

Making the best with Fiddler Crabs - 4/2/2024 9:08:00 PM

 The last thing I expected when walked in to the bait store this afternoon was for them to be (temporarily) out of live Shrimp AND Mud minnows. (View)

Wind and Cool Make for a Challenge - 3/19/2024 8:05:00 PM

 When I stepped out side this morning in the dark to get the boat ready I was a bit surprised by the wind still kicking. I knew the forecast ca (View)

Grande Slam For The Day - 3/13/2024 5:09:00 PM

 I fished with the Prolog's Hand and Mary and their daughter Mollie to day meeting them down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp early this morning. (View)