© Johan Boshoff


Stonefish (Synanceiidae)


Stinger, Stingfish and Ghouls


Stonefish measure 20cm on average but can be as long as 35cm.


Stonefish are rather fat, large fish which is characterised by its upside-down mouth. They have no visible scales and their skin looks as if it is covered in warts. They camouflage themselves according to their environment, and so they vary in colour.

General Info

Stonefish belong to the Synanceiidae sub-family which comprises of eight genera and 36 species. The name ‘stonefish’ derives from its appearance. At the bottom of their dorsal spines they have venomous sacks which are very poisonous when stepped on, and can be deadly. They lay motionless at the sandy bottom of the ocean, or on rocks, and cover themselves in sand at times.


Stonefish feed on small fish, invertebrates and crustaceans.


They occur in all tropical and temperate oceans across the world.

Common Species

Stonefish (Synanceia verrucosa)

© Johan Boshoff