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Species: Elacatinus genie, Cleaner Goby

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yellow V across snout, side stripes onto C
pale stripes widen on rear body
mouth distinctly under pointed snout
top lip not joined to snout

Elacatinus genie (Bohlke & Robins, 1968)

Cleaner Goby

Elongate; head compressed; mouth under pointed, shark-like snout; a deep groove separating upper lip and snout; teeth in upper jaw in 1 row, conical, no canines; teeth on lower jaw in three, spaced, transverse rows at front, narrowing to a single series on sides; a single enlarged, recurved canine, near midpoint on anterior, transverse portion of tooth patch in males only; tongue tip slightly emarginate, nearly truncate; gill membranes broadly joined to body under throat, with 5 rays; dorsal fin VII + I, 11 (10-11); length of 2nd dorsal base > distance from 2nd dorsal base to tail fin; anal fin I, 10 (10-11); pectoral fins 16-17 (16-18); pelvic fins I, 5, disk complete; tail rounded; no scales; no lateral line.

Dark grey-brown with a narrow bright yellow V on snout that continues as a stripe along mid-side well onto tail fin, stripe becomes whitish towards rear, widens near the second dorsal-fin origin.

Reaches 4.5 cm.

Habitat: Inhabits living coral heads and engages in cleaning behavior. Also found on rock substrate, often under ledges, and on the outer surface of sponges.

Depth: 1-30 m.

Bahamas and Cuba.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Sponges
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Ectoparasite cleaner
  • Data
  • Ectoparasites
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Bahamas endemic
  • GC endemic
  • Island (s)
  • Island (s) only
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 4.5
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 30