Clipperfishes or kelpfishes (Clinidae) inhabit temperate regions of the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans with 26 genera and nearly 90 species. They occur in both the northern and southern hemispheres. Only four species live in the tropical Indo-Pacific. Preferred habitats are rocky shores and soft bottoms.
The largest clipperfish species is Heterostichus rostratus at 60 cm. The other species are usually much smaller.
Gibbonsia elegans is found along the Pacific coast of North America from British Columbia (Canada) to the Gulf of California (Mexico) in algae-covered areas close to shore.