Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

Español  Contact

Species: Dactyloscopus moorei, Speckled Stargazer

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

eyestalk short
eye without spots/flaps
D continuous XI-XII, usually notch after spine III
top blotched & barred, side - faint stripes
top lip flaps 13-17
rear nostril a hole near front tubular nostril
A segmented rays 30-35
2-4 rows scales side of nape, centerline naked

Dactyloscopus moorei (Fowler, 1906)

Speckled Stargazer

Body compressed, tapering to tail; head large, flattened above, slightly concave behind eye, rounded and narrow at front; eyes on top of head, distinctly stalked, stalk ~length of eye diameter, without a ring of spots or flaps at tip; mouth upturned, with a protruding lower jaw, top jaw reaching past eye; rear nostril a single pore near base of tubular front nostril; operculum and both lips with skin flaps, 9-22 on operculum, usually 13-17 on top lip; 1st preopercular canal branched, with multiple pores on branches; canal pores on preoperculum 3-18; dorsal fin origin on nape, before level of upper corner of operculum, fin usually continuous but a notch between spines III-IV, usually XI-XII (IX-XIII) spines, 28-29 (26-30) rays; anal fin II, 32 (30-34); pelvic fins inserted under throat, each with I, 3, rays thickened and free at the tips; no notch under lower edge of tail fin base; scales large, smooth; lateral line bends down under last dorsal spine, 46 (43-47) pored scales; 2-4 rows of scales on each side of nape before dorsal fin, center of nape scaleless; 3-4 rows of scales between lateral line and 1st dorsal spine, 1.5-2 row under rest of spines.

Top of head and body blotched or irregularly barred with brown; upper sides flecked with brown, with indications of stripes along scale rows.

Reaches 8.6 cm.

Lives in soft sand bottoms.

Depth range: 0-35 m.

N Carolina to Texas.

High Resolution Map Download

Species Data Create Report Export as Word File Export as Excel File
  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Brooded
  • Data
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Extends North of GC
  • GC endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 8.6
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 35