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9. Warty Frogfish (Antennarius maculatus)


The Warty Frogfish (Antennarius maculatus) is a species of fish that belongs to the Antennariidae family. This fish is named after the dermal spinules that cover its skin and gives it a warty appearance. These spinules are thought to provide camouflage and protection from predators, and they are also found on other species of frogfish.

One of the most striking features of the Warty Frogfish is its wide range of pastel-like colours. This fish can come in various shades; bleached pink, mellow yellow, creamy peach and also in white and black. These colours are thought to help the Warty Frogfish blend in with its surroundings and make it harder for predators to spot it.

In terms of physical appearance, the Warty Frogfish is similar to its cousin, the Painted Frogfish (Antennarius pictus). However, there are a few key differences that allow you to tell them apart. For example, the Warty Frogfish has yellow, orange or red margins on all of its fins. It also has a brighter coloured saddle and triangular-like figures on its body. These markings are absent from the Painted Frogfish. The Painted Frogfish is usually covered in many small eye-spots. These so called “ocilli” is a typical feature for this sit-and-wait ambush striker. Hence their alternative name; “anglerfish” or “anglers”.

Another way to tell the two species apart is by the presence of scab-like blotches. The Warty Frogfish does not have these, while the Painted Frogfish does. The Warty Frogfish is also smaller (maximum10cm/4inch)than the Painted Frogfish (up to 16cm/6,5inch).

The Warty Frogfish is found in shallow waters, usually around reefs or rocky areas. It is native to the Indo-Pacific region, including the Red Sea, the East African coast, and the western Pacific Ocean. This fish is not a strong swimmer and relies on its ability to camouflage itself to avoid detection by predators.

The Warty Frogfish is a carnivorous fish and feeds on a variety of small fish and crustaceans. It uses its unique hunting technique to lure prey closer to it. This technique involves using its first dorsal spine, which looks like a fishing lure to at tract prey. This appendage consists of two parts; a rod-like structure (illicium) and a lure (esca). Once the curious or hungry prey gets close enough, the Warty Frogfish will quickly open its large mouth and swallow it whole.

The Warty Frogfish is a popular species among divers and photographers due to its unique appearance and behaviour.

The Warty Frogfish, as seen here in this underwater video, is a fascinating species of fish that is known for its warty appearance and pastel-like colours. This fish is native to the Indo-Pacific region and is found in shallow waters around reefs and rocky areas. The Warty Frogfish is a carnivorous fish that uses its unique hunting technique to lure prey closer to it. While it is popular among divers and photographers, it is important to approach these fish with caution and avoid touching or disturbing them.


In order to get the full picture it is always nice to film the same subject from a few different angles and distances. Zoomed in shots of mouth and eyes combined with an overall image will usually do the trick.

Filming location:

This short underwater videoclip has been filmed in Bali, Indonesia 🇮🇩

More on this topic:

For an in-depth description of a juvenile Warty or Clown Frogfish please go to vlog post 58 or click following link: https://www.beyondscuba.com/post/juvenile-clown-frogfish

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