Longhorn Sculpin
(Myoxocephalus octodecemspinosus)

Longhorn Sculpin
Courtesy of Don Flescher

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This sound clips contains a variety of growling and groans that were recorded in Narragansett Bay and in laboratory test tanks.
From CD Supplement to: Sounds of the Western North Atlantic Fishes by Fish & Mowbray, 1970. CD Copyright University of Rhode Island, 2001.
Description
The longhorn sculpin is a bottom dwelling species that ranges from Newfoundland to Virginia. Commonly found in harbors and shallow coastal waters during the warmer months, a seasonal migration to deeper waters occurs with the onset of winter. Spawning takes place in the deeper waters during the winter months (November through February) when green, red, or brown eggs are laid on the finger sponge (Chalina sp.). Longhorn sculpin reach maturity by their third year and may live more than ten years reaching a maximum length of 46 cm. This species is omnivorous and voracious, earning the reputation as a nuisance to fisherman because it is known to take any bait that is offered.

The longhorn sculpin makes dull growling and sustained groans (likely as a fright response) when handled or harassed by divers or fisherman. Growling has also been observed during feeding. Movement of the pectoral girdle was documented by Fish and Mowbry as a sound producing mechanism used by the longhorn sculpin, however little else on sound production is known for this species.