FAO - Key to the marine and estuarine genera occurring in the Western Central

Pacific by Helen Larson and E.O.Murdy [modified and revised from Hoese, in Smith
and Heemstra, 1986, Kottelat et al., 1993, and Larson, unpubl.]

 

If you use this key please cite the following in publications:

Larson, H.K. and Murdy, E.O. 2001. Eleotrididae. Sleepers (gudgeons). Pp 3574-3577.

In: Carpenter, K.E. and Niem, V.H. (eds) FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes.

The living marine resources of the western Central Pacific. Volume 6. Bony fishes part 4 (Labridae to
Latimeriidae). FAO, Rome.

 

1a. Scales on body small and cycloid, typically 90 or more scales in a lateral series.......... 2

 

1b. Scales on body ctenoid, at least posteriorly, scales moderate to large, typically fewer
than 100 in a lateral series††......................................................................................† 3

 

2a. Vomerine teeth present (estuaries, mangroves)........................................ Bostrychus

 

2b. No teeth on vomer (estuarine to freshwater)........................................ Odonteleotris

 

3a. Rear of preopercle with a ventrally directed spine (covered by skin) (Fig. 1); predorsal
scales 35-53 (estuarine to freshwater)................................................................. Eleotris

 

3b. Preopercle without spine; predorsal scales in fewer than 30 rows............................. 4

 

4a. Bony irregular ridge or row of spiny serrations above eye and on top of snout (spines may
be indistinct) (Fig. 2)†..............................................................................................† 5

 

4b. No bony irregular to spiny ridge above eye or top of snout........................................ 6

 

5a. Lower jaw distinctly anteriormost, chin protruding; head without fleshy knobs or barbels on
chin; distinct black spot on pectoral base or on bases of pectoral fin rays (marine to estuarine)......... Butis

 

5b. Lower jaw about equal to upper jaw, chin not protruding; chin (and side of head in one species)
with small to elongate fleshy barbels; pectoral base and pectoral fin ray bases dusky or mottled
but without distinct black spot (marine to estuarine)................................................... Prionobutis

 

6a. Side and underside of head with rows of elongate papillae, including groups of branched barbels;
eye greatly reduced; ctenoid body scales with auxiliary cycloid scales (estuarine)............ Pogoneleotris

 

6b. Head without elongate papillae or branched barbels, if barbels under head present then eye
not greatly reduced in size and body scales without cycloid auxiliary scales.................................. 7

 

7a. Head scaleless; first (or first and second) branchiostegal rays with anteriorly-directed spine
(Fig. 3); sensory papillae on head in longitudinal pattern (estuarine to freshwater).............. Belobranchus

 

7b. Head partly or totally scaled; if spine present on first or second branchiostegal ray, then sensory
papillae on head in transverse pattern.................................................................................... 8

 

8a. Predorsal scales 10 or fewer; small coral reef-dwelling fish (marine)............. Calumia

 

8b. Predorsal scales 10 or more; brackish to freshwater dwelling fish............................. 9

 

9a. Head and body usually compressed; body short (less than 6 cm TL); 26-28 scales in a lateral
series (estuarine to freshwater).............................................................................. Hypseleotris

 

9b. Body cylindrical, at least anteriorly; usually more than 28 scales in lateral series....... 10

 

10a. Sensory papillae on head arranged in transverse pattern (Fig. 4a).......................... 11

 

10b. Sensory papillae on head arranged in longitudinal pattern (Fig. 4b)......................... 13

 

11a. Scales in lateral series about 60-100; pectoral rays 17-19; head may be somewhat depressed,
body cylindrical; size usually greater than 100 mm SL when adult (estuarine to freshwater)........ Oxyeleotris

 

11b. Scales in lateral series about 55 or fewer; pectoral rays 13-15............................... 12

 

12a. Scales in lateral series about 45-55; when live, body grey with several indistinct whitish saddles
across back; size usually less than 60 mm SL when adult (estuarine,mangroves)...................... Incara

 

12b. Usually 33-42 scales in a lateral series; body brown with 2-3 wedge-shaped whitish to yellowish
bars across back (most pronounced in juveniles), when live, body with pale golden speckles; adults
reaching up to 250 mm SL (estuarine)..................................................................†† Ophiocara

 

13a. Head pores present (may be very small); scale number and colouring variable....... 14

 

13b. Head pores absent; scales in lateral series about 50-60; colouring brown with fine narrow
dark lines along side of body (following scale rows), head lighter brown with dark and light
blotches and mottling on side of head and lips (estuarine).................................. Bunaka

 

14a. Vomerine teeth present; interorbital narrow, width about equal to eye diameter; body
usually with one or more dark brown lateral stripes, but without orange , blue and yellow
spots and other markings (freshwater) .................................................Gobiomorphus

 

14b. Vomerine teeth absent; interorbital wide, width greater than eye diameter; body often
with single dark lateral stripe and irregular black double blotch present on pectoral base;
when live, body with orange, blue and yellow markings (estuarine to freshwater)........ Ophieleotris

 


List of marine and brackish water species occurring in the area.

 

Belobranchus belobranchus (Valenciennes, 1837)

 

Bostrychus sinensis LacťpŤde, 1801

Bostrychus zonatus Weber, 1908

 

Bunaka gyrinoides (Bleeker, 1853)

 

Butis amboinensis (Bleeker, 1853)

Butis butis Hamilton, 1822

Butis gymnopomus (Bleeker, 1854)

Butis humeralis (Valenciennes, 1837)

Butis koilmatodon (Bleeker, 1849)

 

Calumia godeffroyi (GŁnther, 1877)

Calumia profunda Larson & Hoese, 1980

 

Eleotris acanthopoma (Bleeker, 1853)

Eleotris fusca (Bloch & Schneider, 1801)

Eleotris melanosoma Bleeker , 1852

 

Gobiomorphus australis (Krefft, 1864)

Gobiomorphus coxii (Krefft, 1864)

 

Hypseleotris compressa (Krefft, 1864)

Hypseleotris cyprinoides (Valenciennes, 1837)

 

Incara multisquamata Rao, 1971

 

Odonteleotris macrodon (Bleeker, 1853)

 

Ophieleotris margaritacea (Valenciennes, 1837)

 

Ophiocara porocephala (Valenciennes, 1837)

 

Oxyeleotris marmorata (Bleeker, 1852)

Oxyeleotris urophthalmoides (Bleeker, 1853)

Oxyeleotris urophthalmus (Bleeker, 1851)

 

Pogoneleotris heterolepis (GŁnther, 1869)

 

Prionobutis dasyrhynchus (GŁnther, 1868)

Prionobutis microps (Weber, 1908)