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Totally agree this is M.Scorpius. Aka short spined sea scorpion.
Taurulus bubalis very similar to a smaller MS than this one, Tb rarely if ever attains this length as far as I know, but maximum sizes could be investigated further. Ms commonly grow to this size in our waters and much bigger in northern Atlantic.
One of the most reliable ways to differentiate is that Taurulus bubalis (Long spined sea scorpion) has easily visible small pure white barbels at the rear of the maxillary, the upper lip. Ive seen these described as 'white lappets' but I think small fleshy white barbels, or maybe 'barbules' describe them better.
Myoxocephalus scorpius does not have them, this fish hasnt got them so I think the ID is bang on,
Im new to this so I dont know if I should be posting as I did on something which is IDed already?????
Welcome to the site! Definitely post your thoughts, yes!
There are very few people contributing to the site with much knowledge at all on fish, but it sounds as if you know what you are talking about!
My Flickr photos...
These 2 species are 2 that I have looked at quite a bit following encountering both and reading all I could on them. Been looking at many images of these 2 and there are other ways to differentiate, eg fin configuration but in this case the fins are collapsed which is usually the case with a dead fish out of water. The white barbules on the maxillary were the only thing to look for in this case and I think the size points towards Ms and away from Tb.
To be honest I went back to the image of the underside of the fish again after posting to look VERY closely for white barbules but I really cannot see any sign of them.
All credit to Sibian for taking a few shots from various angles, really good thinking and with these 2 species totally crucial for any chance of an ID!
Thanks for the welcome Ophrys, I hope you can help me ID some marine life in the near future.
That's partly what I was working on, too.
I think it will be you helping me, not the reverse! ;)
Hi again Ophrys, Im sure Ive read that word before and I didnt invent it, I think it means miniature barbel?
Believe me, these 2 species are just 2 I struggled with in recent years and I got to know what to look for out of how difficult they are in the beginning!
I am fairly certain this is Ms, it doesnt have the more prominent spines of Tb- but I did consider them having been eroded off before being deposited on the beach. The absence of the white barbules is the thing I am going with and sticking to. They just arent visible and they couldnt have been eroded away yet, the pectoral fin is still fresh and undamaged so theyd still be fresh too, and therefore visible.
Love these fish, I think they are stunning.
I forgot about bullhead, maybe my preferred name for these things. Too many names! Well English ones anyhow.
Lat/Lng: 55.8753402, -2.0925567
OS grid ref: NT943646
On oak line at low tide.