Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Arcos nudus, Padded clingfish

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wide head
dense dark spots in pale reticulum
top lip wide, wider in center
sucker large, papilla front, rear, 2 close central patches
pectoral base: large pad

Arcos nudus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Padded clingfish

Tadpole shaped, with flattened body and wide flattened head; a few fleshy lobes under chin, but nowhere else on head; front nostril with a large branched skin flap; top lip broad, much wider at front than at sides; top jaw with a  deep patch of irregular incisors at front, no canines or conical teeth behind; lower jaw with incisors at front, then 1 large canine then 4 small conical teeth behind those on side; 1 dorsal fin, at rear, no spines, 7-8; anal fin 6-7, like dorsal fin and under it; pectoral fin 23-25, lower 5-7 rays not markedly reduced in size; sucker very large, front and rear parts with a broad band of papillae, central part with 2 close-set patches of papilla; a conspicuous fleshy pad at base of pectoral fin; no scales; lateral line present as pores on head only.

Mainly red.

Reaches 9 cm.

Lives in surge zones of rocky shores.

Depth range: 0-8 m.

The Bahamas to the S Caribbean.

Note: Arcos macrophthalmus is a synonym.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom only
  • Bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Bony fishes
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Benthic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • West Atlantic Endemic
  • All species.
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
Regional Endemism
  • GC endemic
  • Insular primarily
  • All species..
  • Continent
  • Island (s)
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Least concern
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 9
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 8