Shorefishes of the Eastern Pacific online information system

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Species: Aphos porosus, the Monkfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

LL: 4 front, 2 rear, no light organs
body ~ 4 dark saddles
D1: II solid spines
edge D: ~ 5 blotches
C: dark outer 1/2
opercle: 1 large spine



Aphos porosus (Valenciennes in Cuvier & Valenciennes, 1837)


Body elongate, depressed at front, compressed at rear; head broad, depressed; eye small; mouth strongly oblique, lower jaw projecting; teeth pointed, larger on top jaw, 2 rows at front, 1 row on sides; vomer with 2 canines on each side; opercle with large solid spine, preopercle without a spine; first dorsal fin with 2 solid spines, well separated from second dorsal; second dorsal with long base, 31-33 rays; anal fin with long base, 30-32 rays; pectoral base broad, about as long as head, pointed, 19-20 rays; tail fin not joined to dorsal and anal; tail base slender; anterior body with 4 lateral lines, rear body with top and bottom lines extending along bases of dorsal and anal fins; no light organs; no scales.

Brownish above, pale to silvery on side and below; head brown above; back with 4-5 brown saddles, the last one at the end of the dorsal fin extending from the top to the bottom of the body, distinct in juveniles, disappearing with age; dorsal fin pale, 4-6 conspicuous dark spots on outer half; tail fin pale at base, outer half dark; anal fin pale, 1-2 dark blotches on rear margin; pectoral pale, base brownish in juveniles, with brown bars in adults.

Size: 28 cm.

Habitat: soft bottoms.

Depth: 1-30 m.

Temperate; Northern Peru to central Chile.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Mud
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • No Data
  • Carnivore
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • No Data
Egg Type
  • No pelagic larva
  • No pelagic phase
  • Benthic
  • No data
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • TEP non-endemic
  • East Pacific endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) non-endemic
  • Temperate Eastern Pacific, primarily
  • Peruvian province, primarily
  • Continent only
  • All species
  • Vagrant
Climate Zone
  • South Temperate (Peruvian Province )
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Least concern
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 28
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 30