Polar cod (lat. Boreogadus saida) is a fish of the cod family, a unique one of its kind. It lives mostly in the Arctic Ocean, but also in the Northern Bering Sea: in the Bering Strait, the Anadyr and Olutorskiy bays.
Polar cods prefer cold marine water, but desalinated (and therefore they settle in areas of glacial melting). They live in schools: in the morning and in the evening they form a very dense crowd sticking to the bottom and in the daytime and at night, they are in mid-waters.
The body length can reach 40 cm, but this is uncommon, an ordinary fish length is 15-25 cm. It differs from cod by an elongated body and a thin tail. It has a large head with big eyes. The colour is silver with spots. An average life period is 7 years.
The fish eats small fish (smelt, chickweed, navaga) and plankton. Polar cod itself is an important part of the food chain; it is food of many marine predators: seals, belugas, as well as birds. Besides, very often, fish of an industrial level follow migrating schools of polar cod.
Taste properties of the fish are not excellent; it is mainly caught for industrial needs: fodder flour, etc. It is usually eaten in a jerked or canned way.