Thursday, December 27, 2012


Suborder Gobioidei

This suborder contains mainly gobies. Gobies are characterised by their disc-shaped pelvic fins, which form a sucker that allows them to hang on to surfaces. Mudskippers are gobies, which have adapted to living out of water. Gobies are generally small fish, although the Giant Mudskippers can grow up to 30 cm long.

A goby at Chek Jawa ©Tan KH

The Marbled Goby or Soon Hock (Oxyeleotris marmorata) is a common dish on the table. It is not a True Goby (Family Gobiidae), but belong to the Family of Sleeper Gobies (Family Eleotridae).

With a Goldfish and top view at Punggol Park ©Tan KH

There are a few Istigobius species in Singapore. The Goldman's Goby or Black-spotted Lagoon-goby (Istigobius goldmanni) can be told apart from the others by the double blacks spots on the sides of the body.

Goldman's Goby at Sungei Buloh ©Tan KH

Grey Knight Goby (Stigmalogobius sadanundio) is a common goby with a black saddle on the back and small black spots on the flanks.

Grey Knight Goby at Pasir Ris Park ©Tan KH

Mudskippers are fascinating because they can stay out of water for a period of time. They are part of the Goby family. There are more than 10 species that can be found in Singapore. The more common ones are the Giant, Blue-spotted, Gold-spotted and Yellow-spotted. The Giant Mudskipper is the largest of them all. It has a black stripe along the whole length of the body. The Blue-spotted Mudskipper has several black stripes on its body and blue spots all over, but more on the face.

Giant Mudskipper behind and Blue-spotted Mudskipper in front at Lorong Halus ©Tan KH

Giant Mudskipper at Admiralty Park ©Tan KH

Giant Mudskipper at Changi Coast ©Lau SY

Giant Mudskipper at Sungei Buloh ©Tan KH

Gold-spotted Mudskipper has orange spots all over its body. Yellow-spotted Mudskipper has yellow spots all over the body and the second dorsal fin has a black stripe in the middle.

Gold-spotted Mudskippers at Chek Jawa ©Tan KH

Yellow-spotted Mudskipper at Sungei Buloh ©Tan KH

Yellow-spotted Mudskipper at Sungei Buloh (left) and Pasir Ris Park ©Tan KH

Bearded and Elongate Mudskippers both have a longish body, but the former has a bluish belly and a tall dorsal fin when raised.

Bearded Mudskipper at Chek Jawa ©Tan KH

Elongate Mudskippers on coconut husk on Pulau Ubin ©Tan KH

Dusky-gilled Mudskipper (Periophthalmus novemradiatus) is e smlles o em ll.

Dusky-gilled Mudskipper at Pasir Ris Park ©Tan KH

F: Freshwater; M: Marine

Gudgeons (Family Eleotridae)
Flathead Gudgeon Butis humeralis - M
Snakehead Gudgeon Ophiocara porocephala - M
Marbled Goby or Soon Hock Oxyeleotris marmorata - F

Gobies (Family Gobiidae)
Bumblebee Fish Brachygobius doriae - F
Kabili Bumblebee Fish Brachygobius kabiliensis - F
Spotted Bumblebee Fish Brachygobius xanthomelas - F
River Flathead Goby Glossogobius giuris - F
Glass Goby Gobiopterus brachypterus - F
Oriental River Goby Rhinogobius giurinus - Introduced - F
Pond Goby Stigmatogobius poecilosoma - F
Grey Knight Goby Stigmalogobius sadanundio - F & M
Red-margined Shrimp Goby Amblyeleotris gymnocephala - M
Head-striped Goby Amblygobius stethophthalmus - M
Common Frillfin Goby Bathygobius fuscus - M
Yellow Shrimp Goby Cryptocentrus cinctus - M
Brown Shore Goby Drombus triangularis - M
Polkadot-fin Goby Exyrias puntang - M
Golden Flathead Goby Glossogobius aureus - M
Broad-barred Acropora Goby Gobiodon histrio - M
Common Mullet Goby Hemigobius hoevenii - M
Blue-eyed Mullet Goby Hemigobius mingi - M
Decorated Goby Istigobius decoratus - M
Spectacled Goby Istigobius diadema - M
Goldman's Goby Istigobius goldmanni - M
Ornate Goby Istigobius ornatus - M
Javanese Fatnose Goby Pseudogobius javanicus - M
Pink Mud Goby Trypauchen vagina - M
Shadow Goby Yongeichthys nebulosus - M

Mudskippers (Subfamily Oxudercinae)
Blue-spotted Mudskipper Boleophthalmus boddarti - M
Serpent Mudskipper Parapocryptes serperaster - M
Giant Mudskipper Periophthalmodon schlosseri - M
Silver-lined Mudskipper Periophthalmus argentilineatus - M
Gold-spotted Mudskipper Periophthalmus chrysospilos - M
Dusky-gilled Mudskipper Periophthalmus novemradiatus - M
Yellow-spotted Mudskipper Periophthalmus walailakae - M
Elongate Mudskipper Pseudapocryptes elongatus - M
Bearded Mudskipper Scartelaos histophorus - M

Dartfishes (Family Microdesmidae)
Estuarine Dartfish Parioglossus palustris - M

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