SCORPIONFISHES - SCORPAENIDAE
The family contains the world's most venomous fishes, many of them brightly colored. Most species live on or near the bottom and feed on crustaceans or fishes.
Reported to occur at all depths from shore to about 2,200 m. Some family members are reported to be partial intertidal residents, using this zone as refuge from predation during juvenile development, while many are tidal transients, still some may be full residents of the zone
Fertilization mostly internal. Eggs are laid in a gelatinous balloon in some species; larvae are planktonic.
Body compressed; head usually with ridges and spines; gill membranes free from isthmus. Scales, when present, usually ctenoid. Usually 1 dorsal fin, often notched. Some lack swim bladder. Dorsal, anal, and pelvic spines can bear venom gland.
Latin, scorpaena = a kind of fish.