Atlantic Croaker, also known as croaker fish or hardhead are popular saltwater fish found along the mid-Atlantic Gulf Coasts of the USA. The fish get their names because of the "croaking" noise the make when removed from the water.
They are among the first fish to be caught in the spring and are adaptable to a wide range of habitats. Recreational anglers using cut bait catch croakers from piers, jetties, inlets, in bays and from the surf. They can also be caught in the shallows and grass beds using fly fishing gear.
Croaker are also caught commercially, especially in Virginia, North Carolina and other southern states. They are available fresh in season in many local fish markets along the Mid-Atlantic Coast. Croaker fish are often sold whole or scaled and filleted by the fishmonger to order.