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jrosenf

Help identifying two fish from Anilao, Philippines

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Could any of you fish folks please help me identify a couple of fish I photographed on a recent trip to Anilao. Both were fairly small, in the neighborhood of 2 or 3 inches. Both were found at a depth of approximately 25 ft, the first on a day dive and the second on a night dive.

 

Thanks!

 

fish502_anilao2012.jpg

 

fish437_anilao2012.jpg

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First looks like some type of Coralgoby and it's gravid.

 

Second appears to be a juvenile Jawfish, uncharacteristically exposed.

 

Cheers,

Jim.

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I think the first one is Trimma stobbsi - the Yellowhead Goby. Agree it looks pregnant. Saw some for the first time a couple of weeks ago in Lembeh.

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I'm thinking the first one may be Lubricogobius exiguus. For Trimma stobbsi I'd expect the "ear spot" to be more distinct, and the rear body to be less yellow.

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On my trip to Anilao last June I found the same yellow goby twice on a muck dive ("coconut muck", on the other side of the strait across from the Mainit site) in an area without coral, just rubble and sand. I could not find a good ID in Reef Fish Identification - Tropical Pacific. Gobiodon okinawae looked closest but I have only found gobiodons in or on corals. The new Reef Fishes of the East Indies book however has an image for Lubricogobius ornatus which is a very good match and its habitat is described as "silt and rubble bottoms (the picture was taken in Lembeh strait on an apparent muck dive). The book has no entry for Lubricogobius exiguus but according to fishbase they seem to be quite similar but the latter is described as having "dorsal and ventral edges of caudal peduncle strongly keeled" whereas L. ornatus is not keeled. I don't see a keel on your image and don't remember seeing it on the ones I found. However, in terms of color L. exiguus may be a better fit, but colors are often variable, morphology less so. so my best guess is L. ornatus.

 

Bart

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What should "strong keels on the dorsal and ventral surfaces of the caudal peduncle" look like? The caudal peduncle on the L. exiguus pic on fishbase looks just like the L. ornatus pics on fishbase and in the East Indies book.

 

For me, the lack of "pale blue lines radiating from eye and one descending from nape" pushes the ID towards L. exiguus, unless I'm missing something regarding the caudal peduncle keels. If it really is L. ornatus, and the East Indies book pic is correct, then there are likely a lot of mis-IDs out there on the net, especially from Lembeh.

Edited by Nick Hope

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