sculpin


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sculpin,

common name for a member of the superfamily Cottoidea, bizarre fishes with large, spiny or armored heads and short, tapering bodies, found in both marine and freshwater habitats. The sculpins include species known as muddlers (i.e., the mottled sculpin) and some species called bullheads (i.e., the deepwater bullhead sculpins). Sculpins are cosmopolitan in arctic and northern waters. They feed at the bottom on crabs and small fishes. Of little food value, they are occasionally used as bait. The longhorn sculpin (1 ft/30 cm) and the shorthorn sculpin have sharp spines on the head. Sculpins have no scales, but are variously adorned with prickles on the head and fins. The sea raven has large teeth and a prickly skin and swells when caught. The cabezon of the Pacific reaches a weight of 25 lb (11.3 kg). The muddlers are a widespread freshwater group found in northeastern and Mississippi basin streams with gravel bottoms. They have huge pectoral fins shaped like butterfly wings with which they hang onto stones. The fatheads, or fathead sculpins, include the blobfish, a deep-sea fish found off Australia and New Zealand, whose large head and pink gelatinous flesh can assume a sad humanlike appearance out of water. The grotesque sea robins and flying gurnards, with fins modified into "wings" and "talons" for creeping on the ocean floor, resemble the sculpins but belong to families not classified in the superfamily Cottoidea. Sculpins are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Actinopterygii, order Scorpaeniformes.

sculpin

[′skəl·pən]
(vertebrate zoology)
Any of several species of small fishes in the family Cottidae characterized by a large head that sometimes has spines, spiny fins, broad mouth, and smooth, scaleless skin.
References in periodicals archive ?
Differences in assemblages between gear-present and postgear phases were illustrated by significant vector loadings associated with clam, flatfish, hermit crab, other nearshore fish, sculpin, and true crab (Brachyura).
blackside darters, rainbow darters, and mottled sculpin in this study, use comparatively little energy while maintaining their position in flowing waters (Webb et al.
They were able to mask the identity of USS Ticonderoga (CVS 14) for the first ninety-three hours of the exercise and induce Sculpin and Snook to dedicate two of their four launch events and nine of their sixteen missiles to them.
Besides lake whitefish, preyfish species such as alewife, sculpin, and bloater have also been impacted.
In one study, the scientists compared livers from seven fish species harvested in Alaska--walleye Pollock, pink salmon, big-mouth sculpin, Pacific halibut, arrow-tooth flounder, flat-head sole and spiney-head rockfish--and examined their composition in terms of proteins and oils.
In one study, the scientists compared livers from seven fish species harvested in Alaska--walleye pollock, pink salmon, bigmouth sculpin, Pacific halibut, arrow-tooth flounder, flat-head sole, and spiney-head rockfish--and examined their composition in terms of proteins and oils.
But, he said, predators like halibut, sculpin, Pacific cod, arrowtooth flounder and even salmon could be real culprits in keeping crab recruitment low.
Fourhorn sculpin exposed to an effluent containing As, Cd, Cu, Hg, Pb, and Zn had an increased incidence of skeletal deformities (Bengtsson and Larsson 1986).
Many bottom-dwelling Adult and juvinile fish such as cod, yellowtail pounder, winter skate, Northern sandlance, redfish (pictured) and longhorn sculpin thrive within this area.
Reproductive behaviour of a river sculpin, Cottus nozawae Snyder.