Family: CIRRHITIDAE, Hawkfishes
Body oval, moderately compressed; snout short; a fringe of cirri on rear edge of front nostril; mouth moderately large; a row of small canines on jaws with a band of simple teeth inside those; teeth on center and sides of roof of mouth; operculum with 2 flat spines; preopercle serrated; dorsal fin X, 11-17, continuous, slightly notched between spines and rays, membranes between spines deeply indented, each spine with a tuft of threads at the tip; anal fin III, 5-7; tail fin bluntly straight edged; lower 5-7 rays of the pectoral stout, with membranes deeply notched, distinctly longer than other rays, used for perching on the bottom; pelvic I, 5, its origin behind pectoral base; scales smooth, 41-53 on lateral line.
Worldwide the family is represented by 33 species in 12 genera. In our region there is a single W Atlantic species.
PREPARED BY D ROSS ROBERTSON, AFTER RANDALL (2002)