Latin name

Scorpaena onaria

Other names

Neglected scorpionfish


In this species, the body is moderately compressed toward the head and becomes denser toward the tail. The occiput and front of the head are slightly curved, and the depth of the body is less than the length of the head. There are many small papillae on the head, especially on the top of the head and on the snout; there are also many tentacles on the head, one at the posterior end of the base of the supraorbital process, and more tentacles on the orbit. Several small tentacles along the lateral line are the only tentacles on the flanks. 

Features of fish fins

Have 12 spines and 9 soft rays in the dorsal fin, and 3 spines and 5 soft rays in the anal fin. The pectoral fins consist of 16 or 17 fin rays, of which the uppermost ray and 9 lowermost rays are simple, the remaining 6 rays are branched. 

Fish colouring

In living specimens, the coloration is mottled, usually red or reddish-yellow, with irregular reddish, yellowish, and whitish spots.


Occurs in the Indo-West Pacific. It was thought to be restricted to the northwestern Pacific around Japan, Korea and Taiwan, but has since been found in the Andaman Sea, Indonesia, northwestern and eastern Australia, northern New Zealand, the Kermadec Islands and New Caledonia. 


This is a bottom dwelling fish. It lives on rocky reefs at depths from 95 to 500 m (312 to 1,640 ft).


The maximum total length of this species is 37.5 cm (14.8 in) and the maximum published weight is 900 g (32 oz).


These fish do not swim well and prefer to stay close to the bottom. 

Food and feeding habits

It is an ambush predator that feeds on small fish and crustaceans. 


Sexually dimorphic, only males have a black spot on the spiny portion of the dorsal fin. Egg-laying species. 


This species is not interesting for fishermen.

Relationship with a person

They are classified as venomous fish. These fish have venom glands at the base of their dorsal fin spines.

Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Squad Scorpaeniformes
Family Scorpaenidae
Genus Scorpaena
Species S. onaria
Conservation status Least Concern
Habitat Bottom
Life span, years No information
Maximum body weight, kg 0,9
Maximum length, cm 37,5
Sailing speed, m/s No information
Threat to people Edible
Way of eating Predator

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