Yellow-headed jawfish (Brian Bratwicke / CC BY)

Jawfish (Opistognathidae) have elongated bodies and relatively large heads and mouths. Most species range from 9 centimeters (3.5 inches, solor jawfish) to 45 centimeters (17.7 inches, Darwin jawfish) in length. Jawfish inhabit sandy bottoms near reefs where they excavate burrows, which give them protection from predators. Jawfish are mouth breeders.

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This supplemental online resource accompanies the book Scuba Diving Hand Signals by Lars Behnke, available on Amazon.