Lateral line sharply serrated: pectorals of equal length with the ventrals: humeral and opercular spines long: first three rays of the first dorsal granulated.
T. Gurnardus, Linn. Syst. Nat. torn. i. p.497. Block, Ichth. pl. 58. Don. Brit. Pish. vol. ii. pl. 30. Flem. Brit. An. p. 215. Gray Gurnard, Will. Hist. Pise. p. 279. tab. S. 2. f. 1. Penn. Brit. Zool. vol. iii. p. 276. pl. 54. Id. (Edit. 1812). vol. iii. p. 371. pl. 65. Yarr. Brit. Fish. vol. i. p. 48. Le Grondin gris, Cuv. et Val. Poiss. torn. iv. p. 45. Cuv. Reg. An. torn. ii. p. 160.
From fifteen to twenty inches; rarely two feet.
(Form). Body more elongated, the snout longer, and the profile less inclined than in most of the other species: depth at the pectorals less than one-sixth of the whole length: length of the head one-fourth: cranium very slightly hollowed out between the eyes: descending line of the profile nearly straight: emargination of the snout moderate; each lobe with three or four well-marked denticulations: the whole of the head, as well as the shoulders, granulated: two sharp spines at the anterior angle of the orbit: supra-scapular and its terminating spine much as in the T. Hirundo: numeral and opercular spines strongly developed, much more "so than in any of the foregoing species, excepting the T. Lyra; the latter projecting four or five lines beyond the membrane: spines of the first dorsal very strong, especially the first three, which are rough with granulations; the second longest, a little exceeding the depth of the body beneath: pectorals and ventrals of equal length, both falling short of the vent by two or three lines:
D. 8 - 20; A. 19; C. 11, besides short ones; P. 10, and 3; V. 1/5: lateral line broad, and sharply serrated; the scales larger than those on the rest of the body: scales on the dorsal ridges with little projecting crests, which are crenated and rough with minute granulations, but not spinous. Number of vertebrae thirty-eight. (Colours). Above gray, clouded with brown, and more or less spotted with black and yellowish white: beneath silvery: lateral line forming a longitudinal whitish band: sometimes the whole body red, or inclining to that colour.
One of the most common species on the British coasts. Pennant states that it sometimes attains the length of two feet and a half; it is however usually found much less. Said to keep near the bottom, preying on shells and Crustacea. According to Bloch, spawns in May and June.