The Scup is a medium-sized fish with a deep, vertically compressed body.

It is silver with iridescent scales that often reflect the colors of the rainbow.

Scup have small mouths with strong jaws and pointed teeth.

Scup Illustration by Duane Raver, Jr.
Season Open Year-Round
Size Limit 9 inch minimum (total length)

Daily Limit / Person 30

Delaware Range Atlantic Ocean
Abundance in Delaware Waters Uncommon - this species is more common north of Delaware.
General Habitat and Food Preferences Scup are found inshore during the spring and summer months, while migrating to much deeper waters in the fall and winter.

Scup prefer sandy bottoms often with structured habitats such as artificial reefs or rough bottoms.

They feed on small shrimps, marine worms, and squids.
Did You Know? The Scup has dagger-like spikes on its back fin. If you are lucky enough to catch a Scup, be careful handing the fish.
Common Lures and Baits Scup can be caught jigging small lures, but the overwhelming majority of anglers prefer bait fishing with blood worms, squid strips, and pieces of clams on bottom rigs.
Typical Sizes Caught In general, Scup caught by anglers are less than 10 inches in length.
Citation Minimum Length and Weight Live Release Award
Adult: 14 inches minimum
Youth (age 15 and under): 12 inches minimum

Sport Fishing Tournament Award
Adult: 2 pounds minimum
Youth (age 15 and under): 1.5 pounds minimum
Delaware State Record 5 pounds 5 ounces
Herman Schmidt