Dactyloscopus crossotus Starks, 1913
Bigeye stargazer
Dactyloscopus crossotus
photo by Engman, A.C.

Family:  Dactyloscopidae (Sand stargazers)
Max. size:  7.5 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  demersal; depth range 0 - 8 m
Distribution:  Western Atlantic: Florida, USA and Bahamas to Brazil.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 7-23; Anal spines: 2-2. Common amongst Dactyloscopidae: Small, elongate fishes. Head usually broad and deep, body tapering and compressed behind. Eyes on top of head, often protrusible; mouth moderate to large, oblique to vertical; upper and/or lower lips with fimbriae; jaw teeth minute, in 2 or more series; no teeth on roof of mouth (vomer and palatines). Opercular opening large, gill membrane free from isthmus; opercles membranous, large, usually overlapping on underside of head, typically fringed above with 2 to 24 fleshy fimbriae. Dorsal fin continuous, with an isolated or semi-isolated anterior finlet, or with 1 to 5 separate anterior rays; dorsal-fin spines 7 to 23; anal-fin spines 2; dorsal and anal fins free or united to caudal fin by fragile membranes; pectoral fins broad-based, usually enlarged in mature males; caudal-fin rays simple or branched; pelvic fins under throat (insertion anterior to pectoral-fin base), with 1 spine and 3 thickened segmented rays; all other rays simple. Head and venter naked, body elsewhere with large cycloid scales (smooth to touch); lateral line high anteriorly, deflecting ventrally behind pectoral fin to continue along middle of side to caudal-fin base where terminal lateral-line scale bears ventrally directed canal. Body coloration, variably pale to strongly pigmented with white, brown, or reddish; some forms with characteristic saddle-like bars crossing back; others plain, mottled, or with indications of lateral stripes. Species distinguished by: dorsal-fin origin on nape; without a distinct anterior finlet. First preopercular canal branched, with 2 or more distal pores. Posterior naris (a patch of 1 to 8 pores) located on preorbital, between tubiform anterior naris and eye; premaxillary pedicels usually not reaching past rear margins of orbits (Ref. 52855).
Biology:  Occurs in surf beaches, usually in less than 3 m depth. Burrows in soft sandy bottom, where it waits for prey, with only the eyes, nose and mouth protruding.
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 18 October 2007 Ref. (120744)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   
 

Entered by: Froese, Rainer - 01.05.91
Modified by: Kesner-Reyes, Kathleen - 15.01.14
Checked by: Torres, Armi G. - 26.08.94

Source and more info: www.fishbase.org. For personal, classroom, and other internal use only. Not for publication.


Page created by Jen, 05.08.02, php script by kbanasihan 06/09/2010 ,  last modified by sortiz, 10/02/17