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Pike- Tube- Flagblennies

General information

The blennioid family Chaenopsidae includes the pike-, tube- and flagblennies, the family is strictly tropical, ranging from North to South America. There are 14 genera and 90 species represented.

Distribution: North and South America, tropical. Body compressed; usually elongated to anguilliform in Chaenopsis. Scaleless. Lateral line absent, or not more than 3 pores behind operculum. Maxilla hidden from external view. Dorsal fin much higher anteriorly in some species. Spines in dorsal fin 17-28; soft rays 10-38; total dorsal fin rays 29-57. Spines in anal fin 2: soft rays 19-38. Pectoral fin rays 12-15. Caudal fin separate or joined to dorsal and anal fins in varying degrees. Nape without cirri. With or without orbital and nasal cirri. Head rough, often with spines. About 16 cm maximum length; most much smaller. Symbiosis between a chaenopsid and a stony coral has been reported from the Caribbean. Most dwell in abandoned invertebrate tubes and feed on small crustaceans. Assumed to guard eggs in their tubes (RF).

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