The Labrisomid Blenny Family – Labrisomidae
The Labrisomid Blennies (also known as the Scaly Blennies) are members of the Labrisomidae Family and are known in Mexico’s fishing areas as trambollos. They are found in the tropical and subtropical marine waters of the Atlantic and Eastern Pacific Oceans. The family is one of the largest of the New World reef fish and has one hundred five global members that have been placed in fourteen genera, of which fifty-six are found in Mexican waters, twenty-six in the Atlantic and thirty in the Pacific.
The Labrisomid Blennies come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes but generally have robust bodies that reach a maximum length of 30 cm (12 inches). They have broad heads that have blunt snouts, large eyes, and large slightly oblique mouths equipped with an outer row of large canines or incisors. They have branched cirri over each eye and a pair of heavily branched cirri on their nape. The bone on their top jaw is exposed at the side. Most have one dorsal fin with a notch between the spines and the rays. Their anal and dorsal fins have long bases; their anal fin has two spines; their pelvic fins have one internal spine and two or 3 soft rays and are inserted before the pectoral fins. They have visible lateral lines and their bodies are covered with scales.
The Labrisomid Blennies are small inconspicuous fish that reside on the reef surface and among weeds. They are highly secretive bottom dwellers that stay close to shelter. In general they are poorly studies and very little is known about their behavioral patterns. They exhibit a wide variety of colors as well as spots, stripes, or bands, with some species exhibiting two or three color patterns for courting and mating. They are generally cryptically colored to blend into the background. They consume a wide variety of invertebrates including brittle stars, chitons, crabs, mollusks, polychaetes, and urchins.
The Labrisomid Blennies are too small to be of interest to most. A few Blennies are used by the aquarium trade on a limited basis.
There are thirteen members of the Labrisomid Blenny Family currently presented in this website:
Baja Blenny, Labrisomus wigginsi
Downy Blenny, Gobioclinus kalisherae
Fishgod Blenny, Malacoctenus ebisui
Foureye Rockskipper, Dialommus macrocephalus
Green Blenny, Labrisomus striatus
Hairy Blenny, Labrisomus nuchipinnis
Largemouth Blenny, Labrisomus xanti
Mexican Blenny, Paraclinus mexicanus
Porehead Blenny, Labrisomus multiporosus
Puffcheek Blenny, Gobioclinus bucciferus
Redside Blenny, Malacoctenus hubbsi
Thoatspotted Blenny, Malacoctenus tetranemus
Zaca Blenny, Malacoctenus zacae