Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Elacatinus louisae, Spotlight Goby

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

snout: yellow spot - transverse oval/round
pale stripe yellow then blue, over eye to tail base
dark stripe - > oval spot on C base
mouth opens at front, top lip not joining snout
juvenile: snout yellow + spot

Elacatinus louisae (Bohlke & Robins, 1968)

Spotlight Goby

Elongate; head compressed; mouth U-shaped, rather short, opens at front, separated from snout by a deep groove, ending before the vertical through rear margin of pupil; top jaw with 2 rows of teeth; tongue tip truncate, varying from slightly convex to slightly emarginated; gill membranes broadly joined to body under throat, with 5 rays; dorsal fin VII + I, 11 (11-12); length of 2nd dorsal base > distance from 2nd dorsal base to tail fin; anal fin I, 10 (9-11); pectoral fins 18 (17-19); pelvic fins I, 5; disk complete; tail rounded; no scales; no lateral line.

Dark grey upper head and body; snout almost invariably with a yellow transverse oval to round spot; yellow/yellow-green lateral stripe from over the eye to tail base, stripe fading to silvery to silver-blue behind head, ends before end of dark spot on lower dark stripe; dark stripe below the pale stripe ends in an oval black spot on tail fin base. Juveniles: snout pale yellow, usually with an iridescent tranverse yellow oval spot.

Reaches: 3.8 cm.

Habitat: Large tubular shaped sponges and massive sponges.

Depth: 15-106 m.

Bahamas to the SW Caribbean.

Note: pale spot and stripe whitish in Belize fish.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Reef only
  • Sponges
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • GC endemic
  • Insular primarily
  • Island (s)
  • 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
  • 3.8
Depth Range Min
  • 15
Depth Range Max
  • 106