Shorefishes of the Eastern Pacific online information system

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Species: Lythrypnus rhizophora, Spot-cheek goby

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

cheek: brown spots
orange-brown + blue-white bars: 4-6 head, 9-14 body
C: rays spotted
pectoral 17-18

Lythrypnus rhizophora (Heller & Snodgrass, 1903)

Spot-cheek goby

Body robust; head round; no fleshy crest along top of head and nape; mouth very oblique; head without pores; papillae around mouth, on cheeks and operculum and over eye; front nostril a long tube, rear nostril a raised rim; tongue round to blunt; 5-7 gill rakers; dorsal fin VI (1st  spine filamentous in male) + I, 11 (10-12) rays; I, 9 (8-10) anal rays; 18 (16-21) pectoral rays, rays unbranched; pelvics fused into disc; tail fin short, round, with 17 segmented rays; scales rough, body covered, none on head, nape, chest and pectoral base; 28-30 rows along mid-side.

Head and body brownish orange; head with 3-4 narrow bluish-grey bars, with conspicuous dark spots in orange areas between pale bars on cheek and opercle; body with 9-14  narrow blue-grey bars, each of those with a central thin dark line; tail fin with vertical rows of small brown spots forming 7 bars.

Size: grows to 3.4 cm.

Inhabits rocky reefs.

Depth: 1-20 m.

Costa Rica to Panama, Cocos and the Galapagos islands.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Reef only
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Rocks
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Planktivore
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Zooplankton
  • Data
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Pelagic larva
  • Benthic
Global Endemism
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
  • All species
  • East Pacific endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Island (s)
  • TEP endemic
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 3.4
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 20