Elacatinus chancei

Common Name

Shortstripe Goby

Year Described

Beebe & Hollister, 1933


Dorsal Fin: VII, 11-12
Anal Fin: 10
Pectoral Fin: 19-20
Caudal Fin:
Gill Rakers:
Vertebrae: 28

Mouth subterminal. Body scaleless. Pelvic fins fused to form a sucking disk.


Body pale to dark gray, with a blackish lateral stripe from pectoral fin to caudal fin. Stripe ends as a point or as a blotch on tail. A bright yellow eye-stripe runs from upper eye to above pectoral fin and is edged in black. Snout yellowish, without spot. Cheek reddish to pink. Fins lightly pigmented.


Maximum size to 38.5mm SL.


A sponge-dwelling species from 6-16m. Not known to engage in cleaning behavior.


Caribbean Sea: known from Puerto Rico, Dominica, Grenada, and Barbados.


Böhlke, J. E. and C. R. Robins. 1968. Western Atlantic seven-spined gobies, with descriptions of ten new species and a new genus, and comments on Pacific relatives. Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia v. 120: 45-174.

Victor, B.C. 2014. Three new endemic cryptic species revealed by DNA barcoding of the gobies of the Cayman Islands (Teleostei: Gobiidae). J. Ocean Sci. Found. 12: 25-60.

Other Notes

Most similar in coloration to Elacatinus tenox, which has a shorter and blue eye-stripe and usually has fewer pectoral fin rays.

Interestingly, this species is paraphyletic within the E. horsti clade and can only be differentiated by the short eye-stripe. Whether is simply a color variation of E. horsti or a paedomorphic form of E. horsti remains to be studied. Juveniles of many Elacatinus have shortened eye stripes (Victor, 2014).