Lumpsucker Facts!

Lumpsucker or Lumpfish by Hello, I am Bruce CC BY-SA 2.0

Lumpsucker Facts!

Lumpsucker or Lumpfish by Hello, I am Bruce CC BY-SA 2.0

The Lumpsucker is also referred to as the lumpfish. It is a thick, rather clumsy fish and almost ball-shaped. There are species of lumpsucker fish ranging from 0.7 inches (2 centimeters) to 20 inches (50 centimeters) in length.

Open Oceans – Bottom of the Sea

Cyclopterus lumpus, lumpsucker, lumpfish. GFDL

Lumpsuckers are pelagic fish, meaning that they spend most of their time in the open ocean. Most species are benthic – living on or near the bottom of the sea. They frequent the muddy or rocky substrate where they can camouflage into the surrounding to shelter themselves from predators.


Image credit: Jim 03 CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Not much is known about the biology or reproduction of the lumpsucker. During the late winter, the fish migrate to shallow water to spawn. After the female lays the eggs she leaves and the male takes care of them until hatching. The male is very protective of the eggs.


Japan Hokkaido Lumpsuckers Soup. PD Image

The fish are easily caught during spawning periods since they move to shallow waters. The male fish is considered as a delicacy in Iceland; however the same is not said about the female. The female is hung up to dry for some time before using for meals. Therefore the males are fished for their meat but the females are used almost entirely just to collect the roe (fish eggs).

Lumpsuckers are featured in the following book:
25 Deep Sea Creatures

The YouTube video playlist below contains videos about Lumpsuckers. Details of the videos featured are underneath.

The Playlist:

  1. Diving with Lumpsuckers in Portland by doryproductions
  2. Pacific Spiny Lumpsucker! by Jonathan Martin
  3. Lumpsucker by SublimeScuba


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