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(vertebrate zoology)
The sculpins, a family of perciform fishes in the suborder Cottoidei.



(sculpins), a family of fishes of the order Scorpae-niformes. The fishes have a large head and two dorsal fins (the first being the shorter of the two). The body is usually naked but sometimes has bony platelets or knobs. Some species reach a length of 60-75 cm and weigh several kg; there also are dwarf species measuring only 5 or 6 cm long.

There are approximately 200 species of Cottidae, embracing 60 genera. There are more species of Cottidae in the USSR (about 100) than of any other fish family. They are found primarily in the northern hemisphere in temperate and cold seas and freshwaters; the southern hemisphere has only two species of the genus Antipodocottus.

Myoxocephalus scorpius, a marine species that usually reaches a length of 25 cm, is found in the coastal waters of the Barents and White seas. It feeds on various invertebrates and fish, and it spawns in the winter, with the male guarding the eggs. M. quadricornis inhabits the brackish coastal waters of the circumpolar region; there are relict freshwater forms in the larger lakes of Eurasia and North America. Cottus gobio, a freshwater species measuring up to 12 cm long, inhabits the rivers and lakes of Europe, from the Northern Pyrenees to the Ural Ridge. It serves as food for pike, trout, and burbot; it feeds on the roe of these same fish. C. gobio also eats various invertebrates. Spawning occurs in the winter and spring, with the male guarding the roe. Lake Baikal is the home of 24 endemic species of miller’s thumb (they are sometimes divided into a separate family). Marine species of the family Cottidae are of some commercial value.


References in periodicals archive ?
Uniformity between larval Icelinus and other cottid larvae is noted in the assignment of phenetic groups based on shared larval characters (e.
Until then, salinities in the surface waters were below 13 psu and apparently low enough to exclude all but a few euryhaline cottids.
A more complete understanding of the diversity of the family is necessary to understand the role of cottids in the dynamics of North Pacific ecosystems.
Extracellular environments for the initiation of external fertilization and micropylar plug formation in a cottid species, Hemitripterus villosus (Pallas) (Scorpaeniformes) with internal insemination.
Gymnocanthus pistilliger is an abundant, short-lived cottid species occurring in shallow waters of the Bristol Bay area.
Because grotto sculpin hold the unique position as the only representative of cottids showing cave adaptation we argue for recognition, if not as a distinct taxonomic species, then at least as a distinct population segment or a biologically isolated unit.
For lake trout, the same five categories were used, except that fish were further subdivided into seven subcategories when possible: cisco, whitefish, smelt, alewife, cottids, "other benthic-pelagic fish" (consisting of other salmonids, stickleback, trout-perch, and catastomids), and littoral (percids, cyprinids, and centrarchids).
The intertidal fish community of central California is represented mainly by cottids and zoarcoids, while the intertidal fishes of central Chile are mostly blennioids and no species are common to both communities.
29,30) Gilbert noted that collections made in Tsugaru Straits and at Sado Island resembled Arctic fauna, consisting of liparids, cottids, and zoarcids.
The primary predators on yellowfin sole are two abundant gadids, Pacific cod, Gadus macrocephalus, and wall-eye pollock, the Pacific halibut, and four species of cottids (Brodeur and Livingston, 1988; Wakabayashi, 1986).