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Myoxocephalus scorpius

(Linnaeus, 1758)

Philippe Velghe Silhouette. Netherlands- Dreischor. Myoxocephalus scorpius/Bull rout whit eggs.

Rob Maller Nice effect !

Scubashooters Dot Net Indeed!!!

Message posted on Scubashooters.net on 30 Dec 2012
Rudolf Svensen Leeches on the eye of a Short-spined Bullhead (Myoxocephalus scorpius). Nikon D300 in Subal housing. 2 Subtronic flashes, 60 mm Micro Nikkor. Manual settings, f/45, 1/200, ISO 100

Message posted on Underwater Macro Photographers on 19 Mar 2012
Marc Vermeiren Yesterday .... Netherlands- Dreischor. Eggs from the Myoxocephalus scorpius/Bull rout are growing :)

Message posted on UWphotographers on 30 Dec 2012
Cathal McNaughton Myoxocephalus scorpius soon to be otter stomach contents, shared on iSpot by Sue-ant-otterwatch. See the observation here- http://www.ispot.org.uk/node/311590?nav=latest

Cathal McNaughton Andy, did you see this one? Thought you might find it interesting Glasgow Angling Centre shared 'Savage Gears' pic today, looks like a Myoxocephalus scorpius, a typically greedy M. scorpius.

David Hill Very nice - a devil to unhook? I caught one on Bardsey in the summer.

Cathal McNaughton Yeah David a jaggy handful. Seriously greedy fish. This one has great colouration.

Paula Lightfoot Thanks for the help with the rockling! Here is another rock pool fish, a juvenile just over 1cm long. Is it possible to tell what it is from the photo? Maybe a tiny Taurulus bubalis?

Christian Skauge Very likely in my opinion! But you may have some "exotic" species down in your parts... if it was here I would say 90% sure - maybe 10% Micrenophrys lilljeborgi :-)

Andy Horton Interesting. I tend to concur with Christian Skauge. I have no experience with Micrenophrys lilljeborgi but lots with Taurulus bubalis.

Chris Barrett The barbs on the corner of the mouth isn't very obvious on the photo, but that's not to say they're not there. Is this from the intertidal again, Paula?

Christian Skauge I miss the skin barb too, although there's a light little spec there... when so small, they might not have developed properly.

Tony Gilbert The short-spined sea scorpion is a more northern species, and I've seen the larger varieties of Myoxocephalus scorpius in Eyemouth, so its possible this is a juvenile. The barbs are very small on short-spined as opposed to the long spined. http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonyjgilbert-images/3831462480/in/set-72157620648578254

Paula Lightfoot Thanks everyone! Chris Barrett - yes it was in the intertidal. Zooming in on the original photo, I can definitely see the cheek spines but I can't see mouth barbels - although I don't know whether they are present in juveniles, it was only about a centimetre long!

Tony Gilbert Good point, I wonder whether pogge are born with barbels?

Message posted on Seasearch Identifications on 19 May 2012
Mickey Luv

Mickey Luv common under rocks at the moment. I am sure one of you knows whose eggs they are, thanks!

Mickey Luv someone suggested Bullrout...

Andy Horton Taurulus bubalis ? General pic on http://www.glaucus.org.uk/Bullhead.htm I ought to have a more detailed photograph on the page.

Mickey Luv or Myoxocephalus scorpius, I don't know!

Andy Horton Taurulus bubalis if inshore, on English and Welsh coasts is default most likely.

Andy Horton There are doubts over my ID of this fish. Second opinion welcomed. http://www.glaucus.org.uk/sea-scorpion023-CM.jpg

Darryl Mayer Short-spined Sea Scorpion.

Darryl Mayer Myoxocephalus scorpius

Andy Rapson I think Myoxocephalus scorpius too, Taurulus bubalis has an extension from each corner of the mouth which this fish seems to lack.

Andy Horton The consensus is Taurulus bubalis, with the white mouth lappets turned in on themselves so they are effectively invisible.

Andy Rapson Yes, the length of the spine extending beyond the gill is the clincher.

Andy Rapson Is the colour of these fish fairly random or is it more controlled? I know red is the first colour to 'disappear' and can't be seen below about 30m making it a good colour to blend in. Is that the possibly case with this fish?

Andy Horton From lots of anecdotal experience and assumptions, I would say the colour varies according to the habitat.

Darryl Mayer It does indeed AH. I've seen them in Black, B&W, Red, Multi-coloured even Yellow (and have pics too).

Andy Horton All the Sussex ones I have seen (hundreds) have been a variation of the colours on the following web page, sometimes though a less contrasty warmer brown, but I have seen photographs of Sussex specimens with more colourful markings. http://www.glaucus.org.uk/Terror.htm

Ronald Surgenor I would have said short spined sea- scorpion myself, head shape looks wrong for a long spinded and spines aren't long enough on the gill case either.

Chris Barrett short spined sea scorpion, as it lacks the mouth barbs that Taurulus bubalis has

Andy Horton The head looks right for T bubalis, the spines and mouth lappets cannot be seen clearly is my assessment.

Andy Horton The first dorsal fin spine count is 8 which in Sussex is usual for T. bubalis whereas the very few samples of M. scorpius have 9. This is not definitive and further first dorsal fin counts would be useful.

Ronald Surgenor I wonder can they hybridise, just to confuse things further.

Andy Horton My bet is that they will eat each other, the bigger fish swallowing the smaller one, subject to the spines deterrent.

Andy Horton The larger the T. bubalis and the smaller the long spines are in proportion to the body.

Douglas Herdson Where was it found? I have found that M. scorpius are generally larger and found offshore, shore specimens are rather rare. Also the head is broader and more domed than T. bubalis. I definitely go with Taurulus bulbalis for this fish.

Cathal McNaughton I think this is a more mature Tb than we generally see in rockpools. Disregarding the presence of the diagnostic barbel on the rear of the maxillary, I think the length of the long spine on this one is hard to appreciate fully in my images for 2 reasons. Firstly it is partially obscured by the splayed out pectoral and secondly what can be seen of it is totally identical brilliant red to its backround. I think Andy has also made a potentially crucial point that the large spine on a mature Tb becomes proportionately smaller than those on juveniles? I might add more pics, hope I dont have to do too much resizing as it makes things difficult to see!

Cathal McNaughton Re colouration, I wonder how constant it is and if this one was this colour all the time? Just because Ive seen small TB from rockpools completely change their hue in a matter of minutes when moved over a new surface. Darryl I'd love to see your yellow fish! The nearest to that Ive seen would be a kind of buff/olive, but I dont think its particularly uncommon. Fascinating fish.

Vinh Lam Hi guys, been looking around the web and my own images of the two species, but it looks like M scorpius has a few more rays in the 2nd Dorsal than T bubalis. Most of the T bubalis I've counted have 10-11 where as the M scorpius have 12+. To me, I think it's jizz feels like T bubalis.

Andy Horton I was thinking about the spine count on the first dorsal fin for bothe species. 6 or 7.

Douglas Herdson According to Wheeler (1969) M. scorpius D1 VII to XI hard spines, D2 14 - 17 soft rays; T. bubalis D1 VII to IX hard spines, D2 10 - 13 soft rays.

Andy Horton Memory error. D! = XIII in Sussex specimens when the spines are counted in T bubalis. I think there may be variations though. I seem to have mislaid my notes.

Andy Horton Could there be a correlation between red Taurulus bubalis and Lithothamanian encrusting algae?

Cathal McNaughton Andy, is that the much talked about rare sea bed environment, some of which seems to be located just north east of Cushendun village?

René Weterings "Pectoral fin of a Bull Rout" (Myoxocephalus scorpius) Lake Grevelingen, The Netherlands, 16th of January 2013.

Message posted on Scubashooters.net on 26 Jan 2013
René Weterings Nest with eggs of the Bullrout (Myoxocephalus scorpius) Olympus E-PL2 with Olympus housing PT-EP03 Lens: M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 II R @ 14mm Camera settings: f/3.5 1/40s ISO400 Strobes: Inon Z-240 + Inon D-2000 (both type 2)

Message posted on Scubashooters.net on 10 Dec 2012
René Weterings Another picture from the salty waters of The Netherlands..... Eggs of the Bull Rout - Myoxocephalus scorpius. Picture details: Canon G9, f8.0, 1/60s, ISO100, Ikelite housing, single Ikelite DS51 strobe, INON UCL330 + 2x INON UCL165. Right out of the camera....nothing edited.

René Weterings Pictures is taken on the 24th of january 2012 in lake "Grevelingen", near the village of Dreischor at a depth of about 7m during a nightdive. Watertemperature was 5 Celcius and the visability about 2-4m (which is average for our standards).

Marcel Hagendijk Haaa... the good old days... still remember those.. cold, no viz.hard current as well by any chance? not to bad in grevelingen..

Ken Thongpila Good effort and love details René Weterings, I really love cold water and poor vis condition areas photos.... I think it is very challenge and very difficult to get good photos.. Well Done :-)

René Weterings No currents in lake Grevelingen, but in the "Oosterschelde" there is...! Here visibility can be as bad as less than 0,5m with some bad luck. Most of the time it is about 1-3m. So the Netherlands are more suitable for macro photography than wide angle. So you can expect some more pictures from me in the future. I will post at least 1 picture after every dive I make, and I dive about once a week on average.

Message posted on Underwater Macro Photographers on 01 Feb 2012
René Weterings "Pectoral fin of a Bull Rout" (Myoxocephalus scorpius) Lake Grevelingen, The Netherlands, 16th of January 2013.

Message posted on UWphotographers on 26 Jan 2013
René Weterings Nest with eggs of the Bullrout (Myoxocephalus scorpius) Olympus E-PL2 with Olympus housing PT-EP03 Lens: M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 II R @ 14mm Camera settings: f/3.5 1/40s ISO400 Strobes: Inon Z-240 + Inon D-2000 (both type 2)

Message posted on UWphotographers on 10 Dec 2012
Animalia (Kingdom)
  Chordata (Phylum)
    Vertebrata (Subphylum)
      Gnathostomata (Superclass)
        Pisces (Superclass)
          Actinopterygii (Class)
            Scorpaeniformes (Order)
              Cottidae (Family)
                Myoxocephalus (Genus)
                  Myoxocephalus scorpius (Species)
Associated Species