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Oyster Toadfish (Opsanus tau)

The Oyster Toadfish or Opsanus tau is just one of the many saltwater fish from the family Batrachoididae known as Toadfish. These fish occasionally make it into the aquarium trade and go by a few different names including Mudtoad, Ugly Toad, Oyster Cracker, Dowdies and the Bar Dog. As you can imagine with a nickname like the Ugly Toad this fish is quite odd looking with a yellowish brown coloration and sharp teeth.  They also have sharp venomous dorsal spines so be careful when taking them off the hook! 

Oyster Toadfish are not very long, only growing to about 15" (39cm). The males of this species has the ability to make a foghorn sound that is used during the mating season to attract females. The males will build a nest and then serenade their female counterparts with their lovely croaking.  After courtship the male will stay and guard the eggs and small fry after they hatch.  Both the male and female of this species are known to make a croaking sounds when threatened or caught.  You can check out the Oyster Toadfish in action in the videos below.

Oyster Toadfish are omnivores that will feed on a variety of foods including fish, mollusks, crustaceans and squid. They are ambush predators that will lay motionless until a potential meal comes by and then attack with amazing speed!

If you have any additional information about the Oyster Toadfish please leave us a comment below.

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