Colour tends not to be a reliable distinguishing feature for many species. For these two rockling
species, which are on the Irish Specimen Fish Committee listings, colouration is very relevant.
Both body shapes are suggestive of small ling and both are scaleless with a single dorsal fin which
extends for approx. 40% of the body. Both have two barbels on the snout and one under the chin.
Colours vary being typically ranging from yellow to brown to reddish for both with pale ventral
The three bearded rocking can also be distinctly dark orange. Large chocolate brown spots
on the head and body of the three bearded rockling mark a key difference compared to shore
Shore rockling, if spotted, will have pale-coloured mottled spotting.