What Is a King Clip Fish?

King clip fish are long, slender fish found in the waters of the Indo-Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Members of the cusk-eel family, king clips are also known as kingklips, Chilean lings and pink lings. The king clip has a fish-like head and a body like an eel.

King clips live in rocky areas near the bottom of the seabed at depths of between 125 feet and over 3,200 feet. Juveniles are typically found in the shallowest water. King clips are usually orange, pink and brown on top and have white bellies, but they may also be red, golden and black. They grow to up to 6 feet long and weigh up to 50 pounds.

King clips have long gills, and their pelvic fins are located below their eyes, in the chin area. Even though they have an eel-like appearance, king clips are not close relatives of more traditional eel species. They are in fact close relatives of codfish.

King clips have firm, dense flesh that comes off in loose flakes. Their flavor is described as sweet, delicate and mild. They are a main ingredient in spicy Chilean bouillabaisse and are a popular menu item in South Africa. King clips themselves feed on squid, hake, mantis shrimp, dragonets and other fish.