Ghost flathead

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Hoplichthys haswelli (Armoured flathead).gif
Armoured flathead, Hoplichthys haswelli
Drawing by Dr Tony Ayling
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Scorpaeniformes
Family: Hoplichthyidae
Kaup, 1873


Ghost flatheads are a family, Hoplichthyidae, of scorpaeniform fishes native to the Indo-Pacific Oceans. The genus Monhopolichthys is of uncertain status and in need of further investigation.

They are elongated fishes with very broad and strongly depressed heads, bearing spines and ridges. They are scaleless. Their lateral lines contain spiny scutes. Their pectoral fins have three or four lower rays free. Their pelvic fins are widely set apart. They are benthic from about 10 to 1500 m, with a maximum length of 43 cm.