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Species: Mugil rubrioculus, Redeye Mullet

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

iris orange/red
opercle: small gold spot
top pectoral base: small dark spot
flank: no stripes
D2 tip - conspicuous black spot
flank scales: usually no small accessory scales
A pale
teeth absent/minute, short
pectoral 15-17, not quite reaching D origin
A: III, 9
scales: 35-38 lateral, 8-11 before pectoral
D2 & A: completely scaled

Mugil rubrioculus Harrison & Nirchio & Oliveira & Ron & Gaviria, 2007

Redeye Mullet

Moderately elongate, robust body; head deeper than wide at rear edge of operculum, top of head flat; eyes mostly covered by a well developed transparent fatty eyelid; mouth small, opens at front, (rear end of upper jaw reaching to between rear nostril and level of front rim of eye), lips thin, with knob at front of lower lips; outer (primary) teeth in jaws tiny but visible with naked eye as a fine fringe, distinctly curved, those an upper jaw with wide tips; upper jaw with broad toothless gap between outer (primary) row and inner (secondary) row of teeth; less than 30 teeth per side of top and bottom jaws; two short, widely spaced dorsal fins, IV (origin midway between snout tip and tail fin base) + l, 8; anal fin III,9 (juvenile II, i9); pectorals high on body, 1st ray hard, i, 16 (15-17), fin usually not reaching level of origin of first dorsal fin, 17.3-18.9% of SL; pelvics inserted behind pectoral base; forked tail; scales moderate to large, rough on body of adults; scales in lateral series from top of pectoral base to base of caudal fin 35-38, 11.5-13 (rarely 14) in transverse series, 17-19 around tail base; flank scales usually without small accessory scales; 8-11 scales in longitudinal series before tip of pectoral fin; pectoral axillary scale 5-8% of SL; second dorsal and anal fins completely scaled; no lateral line.

Olive to bluish on back, silvery on sides, and white below; no dark stripes along flank; iris orange to red; a small gold spot on operculum; base of pectoral dusky or with a small blackish blotch on bases of upper 2 rays; anal fin pale; pelvic fins yellowish, other fins whitish; second dorsal fin with a conspicuous black spot on front tip.

Size: to at least 33 cm.

Habitat: occurs in mangrove estuaries and brackish lagoons, also near the surface in clear water; adults not in freshwater.

Depth: 0-10 m, inshore.

Florida to Brazil.

Note: Harrison et al. 2007, concluded that since the type specimens of M. gaimardianus are lost and there is confusion about the use of this name a redescription and new name was warranted.

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  • Brackish
  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom + water column
  • Mid Water
  • Near Bottom
  • Near Surface
  • Surface
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Water column
  • Beach
  • Estuary
  • Freshwater
  • Mangrove
  • Mud
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Bentho-Pelagic
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Detritivore
  • Omnivore
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
  • Benthic microalgae
  • Detritus
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Phytoplankton
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • 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)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 33
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 10