- Common name: Slimy Sculpin
- Scientific name: Cottus cognatus
- Order: Scorpaeniformes
- Family: Cottidate
- Look for sculpins hopping along the bottom close to shore.
- Broad, bony head with bulging eyes on top.
- Body tapers, compressed laterally toward the tail.
- Pelvic fins forward near pectoral fins, fanned.
- Two dorsal fins: the front is short and spiny, and back is longer and soft rayed.
- Length: 5 to 10 cm
- Weight: 10 to 30 g
- Lifespan: Unknown
- Predators: Lake Trout, Northern Pike, Burbot
- Habitat: Freshwater
- Yukon: S5 (Secure)
- Global: G5 (Secure)
Yukon population estimate
These small fish live on rock or cobble-bottomed streams or lakes. Sometimes they’ll even inhabit brackish waters. They spawn in spring in shallow water under rocks or woody debris. Sculpin are awkward swimmers because they don't have a swim bladder, which would provide buoyancy. They often seem to be hopping over the bottom rather than swimming. A sculpin will only ever travel a short distance in its lifetime.
Aquatic insects, crustaceans, fish eggs and small fish.
Sculpins and people
- Slimy Sculpin are a common food item for larger fish species; flyfishers are known to use weighted streamer flies that resemble sculpins to catch predatory fish that feed on them.