We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Lizardfish?

Mary McMahon
Updated Jun 04, 2024
Our promise to you
All Things Nature is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At All Things Nature, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A lizardfish is a fish in the family Synodontidae. These fish are named for their distinctively toothy appearance, which is rather lizardlike, especially when combined with the cylindrical bodies of many lizardfish species. Two other fish families, Pseudotrichonotidae and Bathysauridae, are also sometimes colloquially known as lizardfish. Both of these families are very small and their range is more limited than that of the true lizardfish.

The true lizardfish have a number of similar physical traits across the more than 40 species found in the Synodontidae family. Their mouths are very large and lined with sharp teeth and they are equipped with pectoral and pelvic fins below and dorsal and adipose fins above. The tails of these fish are deeply forked. In color, the fish can be greenish, brown, grayish, or cream colored, depending on the species and the waters it lives in. They are heavily spotted and mottled, allowing them to camouflage in many environments.

Lizardfish prefer temperate to warm waters and they are bottom dwellers, found in inshore waters at relatively shallow depths. The fish take advantage of their coloring to blend in with the ocean floor and have been known to bury themselves in sand and silt deposits to hide from potential prey and predators alike. The largest lizardfish species can be up to two feet (60 centimeters) in length. Mating habits for these fish vary, depending on the species and some bear live young.

These fish are highly active hunters that pursue and strike at prey. When successful at capturing prey, the fish will take a break from hunting to eat and rest before resuming hunting activities. They are not usually dangerous to larger animals like humans, although they are sometimes encountered by swimmers and divers who may be unsettled by their teeth. While the fish are occasionally caught by people on fishing trips and on commercial fishing boats, they are usually discarded because they are too bony to be good sources of food.

The Bathysauridae are deep water bottom dwellers. They are found in much deeper waters than true lizardfish, and while they share some physical characteristics, they tend to be lighter in color, like a lot of organisms designed to live in very deep water. The Pseudotrichonotidae are small relatives found exclusively in the southeastern regions of the Pacific Ocean. They are known as sand-diving or sand-living lizardfishes, a reference to the fact that these bottom dwellers prefer to inhabit sandy environments.

All Things Nature is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a All Things Nature researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
All Things Nature, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

All Things Nature, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.