Arctic Staghorn Sculpin, Gymnocanthus tricuspis

Arctic staghorn sculpin, Gymnocanthus tricuspis.
This fish has the typical sculpin body plan – a large head, wide mouth, and large pectoral fins. Its first dorsal fin is spiny, while the second is soft-rayed and the caudal fin is rounded. Its skin is relatively scaleless and smooth, except for a scaly patch under the pectoral fins. Adults have dark brown or grey sides that fade into pale yellow on their underbelly. The dorsal and pectoral fins have dark crossbands.

These sculpins have a circumpolar distribution and are common in the Canadian Arctic. They occur off Baffin Island and in Hudson Bay, as well as off the mainland of the Northwest Territories. They are also found in the Atlantic off the Labrador coast. The arctic staghorn sculpin prefers marine environments with water temperatures from -1.8°C to 5°C and is most common at depths below 18 metres. Little is known of its diet, but it likely feeds on small fishes and invertebrates, and are themselves eaten by seals.

Because of its remote location and benthic habitat, little is known about this sculpin's reproductive habits. It is known, however, that it spawns in the fall, producing eggs that are over 2 mm in diameter.