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Family: ANTENNARIIDAE, Frogfishes


All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

head not spiny; eyes on side of head
body globular, compressed
head: 1st D spine = fish pole
large mouth, small teeth
leg-like pelvic before leg-like pectoral

FAMILY ANTENNARIIDAE

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)