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Species: Tomicodon fasciatus, Barred Clingfish

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dark blotch above pectoral base
top back: 6 hourglass bars
lower body - 6-8 bars
sucker front edge - skin flaps
anus centered between sucker & A
black shoulder spot
front nostril - large flap

Tomicodon fasciatus (Peters, 1859)

Barred Clingfish

Body and head relatively slender (both viewed from above); front nostril with a well developed skin flap; the only teeth at front of both jaws are a single row of flattened incisors, some with 3 points, top jaw with 2 canines, 8-11 incisors, lower jaw 2-4 canines, 6 incisors; 1 dorsal fin, at rear, no spines, 8 (7-8); anal fin like dorsal fin and under it, origin under dorsal rays 3-5, 7 rays; pectoral 20 (20-22), only a small fleshy swelling at pectoral base; sucker disc with broad patches of papillae at front (5 rows) and rear (6-7 rows), but no papillae in center, front edge of disc with fleshy tabs; tail fin 10-12 segmented rays; anus midway between sucker disc and anal fin origin to nearer sucker; no scales; lateral line present as pores on head only.

Preserved fish: with ~6 dark hourglass shaped bars across back, 1st on head, last on tail base; side of body with 6-8 dark bars; a strong dark spot on upper side above pectoral base; a dark spot at front of dorsal fin; inner 1/2 of tail fin dark; pectoral fin colorless or with a large dark blotch on base and inner 2/3 of fin.

Reaches 3.6 cm.

Usually clearwater rocky shores, but also near mangroves.

Depth range: 0-5 m?

The Bahamas, E to SW Caribblean.

Note: Its Brazilian sister species is T. australis.

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  • Brackish
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Rocks
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Estuary
  • Mangrove
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • GC endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 3.6
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 5