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Antennariidae (Frogfishes)

Species Currently in the DFL

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Antennarius sanguineus
Bloody Frogfish
About This Family
All tropical and subtropical marine waters, excluding the Mediterranean; occasionally found in temperate waters of the western Atlantic and southern Australia.
Benthic except for the pelagic Histrio histrio, found in depths less than 300 m.

Kidneys lack glomeruli.
Frogfishes have short, spherical, laterally compressed bodies with large mouths and rows of villiform teeth. Their bodies are covered in loose skin, often camouflaged to match their surroundings. They often "amble" across the bottom on their limb-like pectoral and pelvic fins. The gill opening is restricted to a small pore. Frogfishes reach a maximum size of 50 cm, although some species only grow to about 3 cm.

As ambush predators, they attract their prey by wriggling a fleshy lure (esca) at the end of a modified first dorsal spine (illicium). The esca is species specific, often resembling a small fish, shrimp, or worm. This is considered aggressive mimicry. If bitten off, the esca will regenerate. Frogfishes eat small fishes and crustaceans. Some species are in the aquarium trade.

The family Antennariidae contains 12 genera and 42 species.

FishBase 2007; Helfman et al. 1997; Nelson 2006; Pietsch, pp. 1050-1051, in: Carpenter 2002
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