Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Tomicodon rhabdotus, Antillean Clingfish

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head & body: dark + strong narrow pale bars
pectoral base: dark + 2 diagonal pale bars
anus centered between A and sucker
front nostril - large flap
sucker: front edge rough, + flaps

Tomicodon rhabdotus Smith-Vaniz, 1969

Antillean Clingfish

Body and head relatively slender (both viewed from above); front nostril with a well developed skin flap; front of both jaws with a single row of flattened incisors, some with 3 points; top jaw with 0 canines, 12 incisors, lower jaw 2 canines, 8 incisors; a small fleshy swelling at pectoral base; 1 dorsal fin, at rear, no spines, 8-9; anal fin like dorsal fin and under it, origin under dorsal ray 4-5, 6 (6-8) rays; pectoral 20-21, only a small fleshy swelling at pectoral base; sucker disc with broad patches of papillae at front (6-7 rows) and rear (9-10 rows) but no papillae in center, front edge of disc rough, with fleshy tabs; tail fin 10-11 segmented rays; anus midway between sucker and anal fin origin; no scales; lateral line present as pores on head only.

Preserved fish: head and body with sharply defined narrow pale bars on a dark background; base of pectoral fin with 2 narrow diagonal pale bars on a dark background.

Reaches 5 cm.

Rocky surgy shallows.

Depth range: 0-1 m.

E and SE Caribbean.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • 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
  • Antilles endemic
  • GC endemic
  • Island (s)
  • Island (s) only
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 5
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 1