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HomeRESOURCESSPECIES OVERVIEWMonkfish (European) - Species Overview

Monkfish (European) – Species Overview

Lophius piscatorius

Market Name: Monkfish (European)
Scientific Name: Lophius piscatorius
Common Names: Abbot, Allmouth, Angler, Ankimo, Ankoh, Fishing Frog, Lotte, Molligut, Monkfish, Monktails, Sea-devil
French Name: Queue de Lotte
German Name: Angler
Italian Name: Rana pescatrice
Japanese Name: Anko
Spanish Name: Rape
Sustainability: Ocean Wise Seafood

Overview

Lophius piscatorius, commonly known as the angler, European angler or common monkfish, is a monkfish in the family Lophiidae. It is found in coastal waters of the northeast Atlantic, from the Barents Sea to the Strait of Gibraltar, the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. Within some of its range, including the Irish Sea, this species comprises a significant commercial fishery.

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Appearance

It has a very large head which is broad, flat, and depressed; the rest of the body appears to be a mere appendage. The wide mouth extends all the way around the anterior circumference of the head, and both jaws are armed with bands of long, pointed teeth. These are inclined inwards and can be closed so as to offer no impediment to an object gliding towards the stomach, but to prevent its escape from the mouth.

The pectoral and pelvic fins are so articulated as to perform the functions of feet, so the fish is able to walk along the bottom of the sea, where it generally hides in the sand or amongst seaweed. Around its head and also along the body, the skin bears fringed appendages resembling short fronds of seaweed, a structure which, combined with the extraordinary faculty of assimilating the colour of the body to its surroundings, assists this fish greatly in camouflaging itself in the places which it selects on account of the abundance of prey. It has no scales.

Biology

The spawn of the angler consists of a thin sheet of transparent gelatinous material 60 to 90 cm (2 to 3 ft) wide and 7.5–9 m (25–30 ft) long drifting freely in the water. The eggs in this sheet are in a single layer, each in its own little cavity. The larvae are free-swimming and their pelvic fins are elongated into filaments.[3] A male angler matures at the age of 4 years and grows to be 40 cm (16 in) long; whereas the female angler takes 2 years longer to mature.[4]

Where They Live

Northeast Atlantic, from the Barents Sea to the Strait of Gibraltar, the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.

SourceWikipedia
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