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Species: Floridichthys carpio, Goldspotted Killifish

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9-15 long thin dark bars
D 11-12
teeth - 3 points
pectoral 16-18
slightly enlarged scale behind operculum

Floridichthys carpio (Gunther, 1866)

Goldspotted Killifish

Body moderately deep and chubby; head flattened, upper profile convex; snout short and blunt; front nostril not tubular; covering of eye not continuous with skin of head; mouth wide, oblique, at front, protrusible; 6 pores under chin; teeth 3-pointed, in single series; 12 short, stout gill rakers; dorsal fin short based, 11-12 rays, at mid-body, its origin before anal fin origin; anal fin with 9-10 branched rays; dorsal and anal fins longer in male; pectoral fin short, 16-18 rays, low on side; pelvics small, 6-7 rays, on belly well behind pectoral base; tail fin bluntly rounded; body with large, smooth scales, 23-25 lateral scales; head scaly; one wide scale across entire snout, with naked strip before that; scales before pelvics large and regularly positioned, 17 or fewer; no enlarged scale just behind upper corner of operculum; lateral line reduced to a series of pits along side of body.

Color highly variable and changeable: top of head and body dark grey; 9-15 thin irregular dark bars on lower side, ~1/2 of them reaching bottom of body, these alternating with short bars, spaces between bars silver to yellowish; breeding male with cheeks and lower sides with golden spots outlined in grey on spaces between dark bars; lower head and belly golden; a series of iridescent oblong blotches along midside between operculum and tail fin base; pectorals with gold tint; pelvic and anal fins orange, dark grey on inner parts; dorsal fin grey, outer margin orange; tail fin with orange wash, rays dark grey, dark grey spots on membranes. Females with less color, especially on fins.

Reaches 11.3 cm.

Seagrass beds in salt water, occasionally to brackish water, occasionally in freshwater.

Depth range: 0-2 m.

NE Florida to NW Florida.

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  • Brackish
  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Estuary
  • Freshwater
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Omnivore
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
  • Benthic microalgae
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • No pelagic larva
  • No pelagic phase
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • GC endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 11.3
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 2