; subclass Actinopterygii, order Scorpaeniformes)
A very large family of marine and freshwater fish, all of which have a bony support beneath the eye, and the eyes placed high on the head. There is a deep notch between the two dorsal fins, and the large pectorals are wing-like. Most sculpins are found in inshore situations; some species (e.g. Gymnocanthus tricuspis, staghorn sculpin) live in cold polar waters. Myoxocephalus scorpius (father lasher), of the N. Atlantic, is a voracious predator but is used as a source of bait and fishmeal. There are about 300 species, widespread in non-tropical regions. See also Psychrolutidae.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.