Woolly Sculpin

Clinocottus analis

The Clinocottus annals is a common small fish found within the rocky intertidal zone.  The geographic distribution of the woolly sculpin revolves around the central and northwest coast of Baja Mexico, California.  When describing the physical attributes of the sculpin, the fish has a small, elongated body with a head that is larger and more depressed than the body (1).  Sculpins are considered ambush predators that remain still on the benthic seafloor until prey approaches nearby in which they attack (2).   They feed mainly on small crustaceans, worms, and invertebrates.  One interesting fact includes that sculpins have the ability to tolerate exposure to air for up to approximately 24 hours (3).



Rocky Intertidal Zone


 (1) Snow, John. “Woolly Sculpin.” Mexico – Fish, Marine Life, Birds and Terrestrial Life, https://www.mexican-fish.com/woolly-sculpin/. Accessed 16 November 2018.


(2) Martin, K. L. M. 1991. Facultative aerial respiration in an intertidal sculpin, Clinocottus analis (Scorpaeniformes: Cottidae). Physiological zoology 64:1341–1355.


(3) Monahan, Phil. "Fish Facts: Sculpins (genus Cottus).” Orvis News, The Orvis Company Inc., 1856, https://news.orvis.com/fly-fishing/fish-facts-sculpins-genus-cottus. Accessed 16 November 2016


(Photographs)  Peter J. Bryant, University of California, Irvine