|Family||Scientific Name||Author||Year||Common Name|
|Gobiidae||Ctenogobius stigmaticus||(Poey)||1860||Marked Goby|
All Ctenogobius – Pelvic fins completely united to form a round sucking disc. Dorsal fins separated. Body stout. No chevron markings on sides. Upper pectoral-fin rays broadly united. Tongue sometimes slightly indented but not notched. No lobes on shoulder girdle. Lateral scales, if present, usually < 57. Body mostly covered with scales. Dorsal fin with usually < 7 spines. Pores present in lateral line system on head. Lateral scale rows usually > 29. Body completely covered with scales. Dorsal fins close together. Opercle naked. Caudal fin pointed. Usually > 28 lateral scale rows. Body not usually transparent. No black spot above opercle.
Unique Characters: Dorsal and anal-fin rays usually 12 and 13, respectively. Three or five distinct vertical bars on lower cheek. No suborbital bar. Small dark shoulder spot present. Narrow, vertical, yellow (pale in preservative) bars present on body.
Darter Goby Ctenogobius boleosoma
Dash Goby Ctenogobius saepepallens
Freshwater Goby Ctenogobius shufeldti
Darter Goby, Ctenogobius boleosoma. Dorsal and anal-fin rays usually 11 and 12, respectively. Distinct shoulder spot present (sometimes faded in preservative).
Dash Goby Ctenogobius saepepallens. Dorsal and anal-fin rays usually 12 and 13, respectively. Shoulder spot usually absent. No bars on lower cheek. Suborbital bar present or absent. No yellow body bars. Pectoral-fin rays usually 15 or 16. Predorsal area always naked. Thin suborbital bar present (sometimes faint). Dash-like markings present along body midline. 29–34 scales in lateral series.
Freshwater Goby Ctenogobius shufeldti. Dorsal and anal-fin rays usually 12 and 13, respectively. Shoulder spot absent. No bars on lower cheek. Suborbital bar present or absent. No yellow body bars. Pectoral-fin rays 17 or 18. Predorsal area (just anterior to dorsal origin) usually with some scales. Suborbital bar absent, but with stripe crossing cheek from upper jaw to opercle. Large blotches (usually five) present along body midline. 31–40 scales in lateral series.
Reference: Ross, S.W., and F.C. Rohde. 2004. The gobioid fishes of North Carolina (Pisces: Gobioidei). Bulletin of Marine Science 74:287-323.