Family: ANTENNARIIDAE, Frogfish, Frogfishes
These unusual fishes, which reach 50 cm, have globular somewhat compressed bodies; head not spiny; eyes on sides of head; a very large, upward directed mouth with many small teeth; and a greatly modified first dorsal spine, termed the illicium, at the top front of the head, that forms a moveable "fishing rod" tipped with an enticing lure (the esca); a small round gill opening below and behind pectoral base; limb-like pectoral fins with an "elbow" joint; leg-like pelvic fin before pectoral.
Frogfishes occur in all tropical and temperate seas. This circumglobal, tropical to subtropical family contains 14 genera and 46 species; 7 species in two genera found in our area.
PREPARED BY D ROSS ROBERTSON, AFTER PIETSCH (2002)