Gobiosoma bosc Lacepede 1800
Photo by J. Van Tassell
Florida west coast

updated 15 June 2005


Head Pores - Cephalic head pores B',C(s),D(s),E,F,H' and posterior ocularscapular pores K'L' generally present; preopercle pores M',N,O'

Scales - No scales, completely naked.

Fins - D1 -VII [rarely 6 or 8], spines not elongate; D2- 13[12-14]; pectoral 18[18-19]; anal 11[10-12]; caudal segmented rays 17[17-18]; pelvic I,5 all rays branched; pelvic distance to anus 1/2 or slightly more;

Head - Very small barbel in front of eye; interorbital about eye diameter; rostral frenum absent; outer row of teeth enlarged in upper and lower jaws; anterior nostril a short tube, posterior a raised rim.

Papillae - A transverse pattern: three rows in front of row b; row 5i/6i under the middle of row b and extending below the level of row d; three anterior vertical rows not extending below row d; row d continuous.

Color - Body with about nine light cross bars generally straight and narrow streaks, the broad brown interspaces uniformly pigmented generally faint and sometimes absent; occasionally uniformly pigmented either light or very dark all over.

Distribution - Along the Atlantic coast from southern Massachusetts to Everglades City in Florida, absent from southeastern Florida and the Florida Keys; along the Gulf coast from southern Florida west to Tampica, Mexico.

Habitat - A coastal species generally found in salinities between 0.3 o/oo to 24.7 o/oo; frequently found in association with oyster shells, also reported from grass beds, rocky areas, sea squirts, and marsh pools.

Notes - Generally confused with Gobiosoma robustum, G. longipala, and G. ginsburgi. The latter two possess two small modified basicaudal scales on the posterior of the caudal peduncle. In G. robustum the vertical bars are less distinct and not a straight is in G. bosc, the pelvic fin is longer, the dorsal and anal fin rays are 12 and 10 respectively instead of 13 and 11, and the posterior cephalic pores are generally lacking.