Body elongated with depressed head. Two well separated dorsal fins, base of the first is short, its first spine very small. Second dorsal fin originating nearly midpoint, its first ray is longest. Anal fin opposite to second dorsal fin and similar in shape. Caudal fin emarginated, its upper ray filamentous. Pectoral fin base situated between dorsal fin origin and pelvic fin origin. Large mouth, lower jaw projected with small villiform teeth. Upper jaw rear edge not reaching the vertical of eye. Eyes dorsally situated. A long spine on the preoperculum, reaching back at least to opercular margin.
Color : body tan to cream with scattered black blotches and spots on the body, dorsal and caudal fins.
Common size : 10-15 cm (max. 19 cm).
Other Platycephalids: lack of long preoercular spine; lack of filamentous ray in the upper edge of caudal fin; 9-10 dorsal spines.
Scorpaenidae – Clearly a single continuous dorsal fin.
Triglidae – Three lowermost pectoral ray detached.
Callionymidae – Pointed snout with small mouth.
BIOLOGY / ECOLOGY
Feeds on benthic invertebrates and small fishes. Foraging method mainly by ambushing.
Habitat : sandy or muddy substrate to depth of 50 m.