Striped Mullet are present in coastal, tropical and subtropical ocean areas worldwide. They also inhabit the lower reaches of coastal streams. In California, Striped Mullet may be found as far north as San Francisco Bay, and they are also present in the Salton Sea. They live mainly in estuaries, have been observed at salinities from 0-75 ppt, and prefer temperatures not much below 14-16oC. Striped Mullet tend to school, including while spawning, but schools break up during feeding. Striped Mullet feed on muddy bottoms, ingesting organic detritus, diatoms, bacteria, and microinvertebrates. Age and growth are variable. Striped Mullets are usually mature at age 2-3 and a size of 23-35 cm SL. Fish may reach 29-37 cm SL by age 4-5 in the lower Colorado River. The oldest, largest fish, observed in the Salton Sea, were approximately 14 years old and 60 cm SL, but these fish were non-reproducing, potentially due to the ionic composition of the Salton Sea.
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