Unlike scorpion fish in other parts of the world, the spines of this inhabitant of the temperate waters are not venomous.

Taurulus bubalis is a master of camouflage with an irregular outline and mottled pattern. It can also mimic the colour of the surface on which it is resting. You cannot, therefore, rely on colour to identify the species. You can, however, distinguish it from
the similar short-spined sea scorpion by the barbel at
the side of its mouth. (For a photo of the short-spined
sea scorpion see http://www.scubatravel.co.uk/scorpion.html/)

Bottom-dwelling, the sea scorpion lacks a swim-bladder
and moves clumsily. However, it can eat crustaceans and
fish in a single quick lurch. It will often stay very
still when approached, just watching its potential
prey.

These fish breed in spring and lay clusters of orange
eggs in crevices or amongst seaweed. They grow up to
175 mm long. You will see the Long-spined sea scorpion
in shallow seas from Iceland to Portugal to the Gulf of
Finland and the Northern Mediterranean.

Further Reading:
Great British Marine Animals by Paul Naylor


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