Batrachoididae - toadfishes

Toadfishes are easily distinguished by their shape. The head is broad and flattened dorsoventrally with eyes on top of their head. The mouth is wide and oblique (angled upward). Many have fleshy tabs or flaps on their head and jaws and sharp spines on their gill plates. The pectoral fins are large and fan-like. The first dorsal fin is short with 2-3 spines. The second dorsal and the anal fins are long with many rays. Most toadfishes are unscaled. Several are venomous, their sharp spines injecting poison into unfortunate victims. Their jaws are powerful and can inflict painful bites. Their teeth, though, are blunt and rarely break the skin. They are bottom-dwellers and sluggish swimmers.