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Species: Fundulus heteroclitus, Mummichog Killifish

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Male - wide dark & narrow silvery bars
Male - ocellus D base
D origin well before A origin
D = / > rays than A
lateral scales 31-34
lower jaw 8 pores

Fundulus heteroclitus (Linnaeus, 1766)

Mummichog Killifish

Body elongate, depth < 1/3 SL, compressed at rear; head flattened above, snout round, short; front nostril not tubular; cover of eye not continuous with head skin; mouth level with or slightly above mid-eye level, small, opens at front, oblique, protrusible, lower jaw projecting; top jaw twisted, not straight; lower jaw with 8 pores; jaws with multi-serial teeth, outer series conical; 9-11 (8-15) gill rakers; no spines in fins; dorsal fin 11-12 (10-15) short based, origin distinctly before anal fin, especially in males, with same or more rays than anal fin; anal fin with 3rd fin ray branched, 10-11 (9-14); tail fin rounded; pectoral 15-21 with narrow base, rounded, inserted low on side; pelvics inserted well behind pectoral base; small (31-34 along midside) smooth scales; lateral line reduced to a series of pits along side of body.

Female plain; no ocellus or dark blotch on dorsal fin; male body with dark and silvery vertical bars, with silver dots on pale bars, dark bars usually wider than or equal to interspaces; no thin dark line under eye or on opercle; an ocellus at the rear insertion of the dorsal fin.

Reaches 18 cm TL

Habitat: tidal creeks and marshes; marine, brackish and freshwater salinities

Depth range 0-5 m

Gulf of St Lawrence to mid east coast of Florida, and Bermuda

Note: Fundulus relictus and F. bermudae from Bermuda are synonyms

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  • Brackish
  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom + water column
  • Near Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Freshwater
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Omnivore
  • Data
  • Benthic microalgae
  • Detritus
  • Insects
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Pelagic crustacea
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • No pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends North of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 18
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 5