Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Gobiidae
(Gobies) > Gobionellinae
Etymology: Gnatholepis: Greek, gnathos = jaw + Greek,lepis = scale (Ref. 45335). More on author: Jordan.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 0 - 50 m (Ref. 5299), usually 1 - 36 m (Ref. 92171). Tropical; 43°N - 2°S
Atlantic: southern Florida, North Carolina, the Bahamas, Bermuda through to the Lesser Antilles in western Atlantic; also in the oceanic islands of Ascension, Madeira and St Helena, and Sao Tome Island, Cape Verde Islands and the Canary Islands in the eastern Atlantic.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 8.2 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 39517); 5.7 cm TL (female)
soft rays: 11. Distinguished by the following characteristics: moderately large Gnatholepis (up to 58 mm SL) with nape midline scales always cycloid and most of predorsal scales cycloid; body pale with 6-8 rows of staggered dark brown spots, mid-lateral spots may be largest; transverse black line on the upper part of the eye joining somewhat oblique to curved black line or bar crossing cheek and ending well behind end of jaw; third to fourth first dorsal fin spines longest, fin with square to rectangular appearance when extended; second dorsal and anal fin rays usually I,11; pectoral rays 16-18, usually 17; lateral scales 26-29, usually 27; 9-11 predorsal scales (usually 10), all cycloid (Ref. 92171).
Inhabits open sand, rock, and rubble areas. Often occurs with the bridled goby, Coryphopterus glaucofraenum. Feeds on organisms and organic material by taking sand into its mouth and expelling it through the gill openings, filtering out its food in the process (Ref. 26938).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Robins, C.R. and G.C. Ray, 1986. A field guide to Atlantic coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 354 p. (Ref. 7251)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 120744)
CITES (Ref. 118484)
Threat to humans
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 23.5 - 28, mean 26.5 (based on 290 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5010 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01023 (0.00534 - 0.01960), b=3.21 (3.04 - 3.38), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 2.3 ±0.2 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (15 of 100) .