Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Caulolatilus microps, Blueline Tilefish

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head deep, deep under eye
mouth v short, not to under eye
C vertical rows yellow spots
nape ridge black, snout blue
blue bar: under eye to center mouth
interoperculum no scales

Caulolatilus microps Goode & Bean, 1878

Blueline Tilefish

Body robust, quadrangular; head relatively deep, deep under eye; steep rounded in profile; fleshy ridge along midline before dorsal fin; eye small; operculum with a short, blunt spine; vertical edge of preoperculum serrated; no barbel on rear edge of top lip; mouth small, ends half way between nostrils and eye; 21-27 gill rakers; dorsal fin VII (rarely VIII), 24-27 rays; anal II, 21-24; tail fin straight to slightly concave; scales rough on body, smooth on head; pored lateral line scales 80-90; no scales on bone between preoperculum and operculum.

Back and upper sides grey brown; ridge along nape black; snout turquoise with a narrow gold stripe under eye, a broad, oblique blue bar, from under rear edge of eye to center of mouth; preoperculum yellow; dorsal fin with grey membrane, and indistinct yellow areas, outer margin yellow; anal fin white, central dark stripe; tail fin rays with several vertical rows of yellow spots.

Reaches 90 cm., 10.5 kg

Lives on mud and rubble bottoms.

Depth range: 30-236 m, common at 50-200 m.

Virginia to the Gulf of Mexico.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Mud
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Sea-stars/cucumbers/urchins
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Extends North of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 90
Depth Range Min
  • 30
Depth Range Max
  • 236