Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Starksia rava, Tawny Blenny

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body: 8-9 dark saddles that extend onto D
cheek: red-brown spots in pale mesh
pectoral base: pale lines + red & black spots
top lip usually barred
under head 3-4 rows dark spots

Starksia rava Williams & Mounts, 2003

Tawny Blenny

Body elongate, compressed; bluntly pointed head; eye, nostril and nape cirri unbranched; dorsal fin XX (XIX-XXI), 8 (7-9), notch between spines and rays; 1st anal spine of male long, free from rest of fin, modified as sexual organ; no ridge or fold along anal fin base; pectorals usually 13; pelvic fins with I (internal), 2, inserted before pectoral base; all fin rays unbranched; lateral line continuous, front section arched, rear section straight, 15 (15-16) + 20 (19-23) scales; belly and pectoral base naked; smooth scales on rear of body.

Head and body pale greenish-brown; upper lip usually with bars; no black spot at front of dorsal fin; cheeks with reddish brown to brown spots on a pale reticulum (more extensive in female); underside of head with 3-4 rows of dark spots; a row of 5-6 small dark spots along edge of preopercle; base of pectoral variable, with pale lines and red to black spots; body with 8-9 dark saddles extending onto base of dorsal fin; dorsal and anal with pale edges, a dark stripe inside that, and a row of dark spots along the base.

Reaches 3 cm.

Lives on reefs in rock and rubble, on both windward reef walls and in lagoons.

Depth range: 0-26 m.

The SE Caribbean.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Rocks
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • 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
  • Sessile worms
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Live birth
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Caribbean endemic
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • GC endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 3
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 26