The cod is a fish that is widespread in the seas surrounding Britain, but is particularly common in around the coast of Scotland where it comes in from the Icelandic breeding grounds to get a tasty meal.

The cod is not a fussy eater and will hoover up most baits that come its way. The fish features a pot belly and overall chubby body, not making it the liveliest of fish to catch.

Atlantic Cod Fish
Record Shore Caught Cod Weight (lb.oz)
This record shore caught cod was caught in 1966 from the shore at the Cold Knap mark in Barry, Glamorgan, South Wales.
  • Scientific name: Gadus morhua
  • Also know as: Atlantic Cod, Codling,
  • UK shore caught record: 44lb 8oz
  • UK boat caught record: 44lb 8oz

What is the lifespan of a Cod?

The cod can reach an age of up to 25 years old depending on the availability of food and conditions of the waters they live in.

The age of a cod cannot be seen from just looking at the fish, but can be determined by the number of rings that are visible on the structure called the ‘otolith’, which is located in the skull.

Cod Fish

What is the best time of the year to catch a Cod?

Smaller cod (also known as codling) can be caught around the UK coast throughout the year, but larger cod tent to migrate away from the British coastline to breeding grounds around Iceland during the summer months.

The best time to catch a cod is during the British winter months.

What is the natural diet of a cod?

Cod typically feed on lugworms, cuttlefish, squid, prawns, crabs and small imature fish.

Is the cod a healthy fish to eat?

A caution about the use of salt

Salt is sometimes added to cod that is about to be frozen as it helps to prevent the excessive loss of moisture from the meat when it is thawed out ready for cooking.

Untreated Pacific cod has about 77 milligrams of sodium in a 3-ounce serving. When it’s treated, the same portion has 316 milligrams of sodium. The two amounts represent the difference between 5 percent and 21 percent of your recommended daily intake of sodium. Check the label on the cod you buy to be sure you don’t consume too much sodium.

Should pregnant women eat this fish?

Cod has been found to contain a slight to moderate amount of mercury. Mercury is an issue for pregnant women as it effects the neurological development of both young children and the fetus of a baby. Women who are pregnant should be careful about the amount of cod they eat, minimising any potential harm.