Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Microdesmus bahianus, Bahia Wormfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

2 dark stripes
D XII, 28-31, origin behind pectoral fin
A 26-28
D & A fully connected to C
gill opening large, not tubular
pectoral 10-12
scales well separated, ~25 laterals, head & body

Microdesmus bahianus Dawson, 1973

Bahia Wormfish

Slender, wormlike, body height 3-9% of SL; small, conspicuous eyes on side of head; front nostril a widely flared tube, rear a pore with raised rim; mouth strongly oblique, lower jaw heavy, protruding; teeth in 1-3 rows, difficult to see, outer row with several slightly enlarged, rounded conical teeth, separated, no enlarged canines; gill opening large (not tubular), located over pectoral fin base, from 4th ray down to just below fin base; one, long based continuous dorsal fin, XII, 28-31, origin behind end of depressed pectoral fin; anal fin 0, 26-28; dorsal and anal fins fully connected to tail fin; pectoral fin 10-12, somewhat pointed; pelvic fins minute, I, 3 rays, fins united, somewhat elongate; tail fin rounded; scales well separated, on all head and body except on tip of snout or lower jaw, ~25 in lateral series; no lateral line.

Body and head with 2 dark stripes, one on upper side from tip of snout to tail base, similar stripe lower along side that joins upper stripe on tail base; dorsal and tail fins with very small dark spots.

Reaches: 5.3 cm.

Habitat: Found in tide pools.

Depth: 0-5 m.

The Caribbean to Brazill.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 5.3
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 5