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Species: Fundulus pulvereus, Bayou Killifish

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male: many narrow dark bars, pearl spots at rear & fins
female: many dark spots, D dark spot
D 9-11, origin before A origin
chin pores 8
gill rakers 7
lateral scales 33-37

Fundulus pulvereus (Evermann, 1892)

Bayou Killifish

Body slender, compressed; head flattened above, with convex upper profile; snout short (equal to or slightly < eye), rounded; cover of eye not continuous with head skin; front nostril not tubular; mouth small, oblique, opens at front, protrusible, at or slightly above level of center of eye; top jaw twisted, lower jaw projecting; 8 pores under chin; jaws with outer row of pointed conical teeth, inner band of simple teeth; gill rakers short, blunt 7; no spines in fins; dorsal fin short based, its origin before anal fin origin, 9-11 rays; anal fin with 3rd fin ray branched, 9-10 rays; pectoral with narrow base, rounded, inserted low on side, 18-19 rays; pelvics inserted well behind pectoral base; tail base slender; tail fin bluntly rounded; small smooth scales, 33-37 midlateral rows; lateral line reduced to a series of pits along side of body.

Females olive above, yellowish below, with many large black spots along flank, some in lines, dorsal fin with a dark spot at rear. Male olive above, yellowish below, with 12-17 narrow dark bars that are ~equal in width to pale interspaces, rear of body and inner parts of dorsal, anal and tail fins with small pearl spots; sometimes a large dark spot at rear of dorsal fin.

Reaches 7.5 cm.

Brackish bays and estuaries; brackish and marine.

Depth range: 0-1 m.

The northern Gulf of Mexico.

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  • Brackish
  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Beach
  • Estuary
  • Freshwater
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Insects
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • No pelagic phase
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • GC endemic
  • Gulf of Mexico endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 7.5
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 1