Commonly caught by recreational harvesters off the outer Washington coast and in Puget Sound.
Description: The body of a cabezon is olive green, brown, reddish or grey on the dorsal side with a white or greenish belly. They have two fins on the back and 5 soft rays on the pelvic fins. They lack scales and have a fleshy skin flap between their nostrils. The upper preopercular spine is stout and slightly curved. Cabezon have small teeth and a large, branched cirrus above each eye. Cabezon is the largest of the sculpin species found in Washington waters.
Maximum Size: To 99 cm (38.9 in) in length, and 6.8 kg (15 lbs) in weight.
Maximum Age: At least 14 years old.
Range/Habitat: They range from Sitka, Alaska, to central Baja, California. They are found from the intertidal to 76 m (250 ft) in depth. They are demersal, solitary, and usually associated with reefs, boulders, kelp beds, or eelgrass.
Fun Fish Fact: Cabezon eggs are toxic.
- Eschmeyer, W.N., E.S. Herald and H. Hammann, 1983. A field guide to Pacific coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 336 p.
- Grebel, J. and G. Cailliet, 2010. Age, growth, and maturity of cabezon, Scorpaenichthys marmoratus in California. California Fish and Game 96(1): 36-52 p.
Photos: V. Okimura and S. Axtell