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Species: Anarchopterus tectus, Insular Pipefish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

brown stripe through eye
brown, often barred
many skin flaps: pair forked flaps along back, simple flaps along side & bottom ridges
rings: trunk 17-18, tail 31-35
pectoral 10-12
D 18-21

Anarchopterus tectus (Dawson, 1978)

Insular Pipefish

Snout short; ridge all along center of snout; ridge along operculum angles up and back; dorsal fin moderate length, 15-21 rays; no anal fin; no pelvic fins; pectoral fin rays 10-12; tail fin 10; trunk rings 17-18; tail rings 31-35; upper body and tail ridges interrupted near rear of dorsal fin; lower trunk ridge ends near anus; side trunk ridge joins lower tail ridge under dorsal fin; body without spines, with scattered simple skin flaps; brood pouch under tail rings 13-20, pouch plates not very enlarged, pouch semi-open.

Variable color pattern, usually brown; often with a short bar on lower part of each body and tail ring, and more widely spaced bars from top to bottom of body; a brown stripe through eye.

Reaches 12.5 cm.

Found in seagrass beds.

Depth range: 1-26 m.

The Bahamas to Argentina.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Live birth
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-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
  • 12.5
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 26