Microgobius signatus

Common Name

Signal Goby

Year Described

Poey, 1876


Dorsal Fin: VII, 19-21 (usually 20)
Anal Fin: 20-22
Pectoral Fin: 19-22 (usually 20-21)
Gill Rakers: 5+16
Scales: 77-90 rows

Body elongate. Mouth large and upturned. Dentary with 4-5 teeth. Both sexes with a well developed fleshy dorsal crest. There are three preopercular pores. Supraorbital canals usually separate. First dorsal spine elongate in females. Body covered in cycloid scales, except for a patch of ctenoid scales under the pectoral fin.


Body pale green to mauve with a purplish lateral stripe. The most obvious marking is a white bar under the dorsal origin bordered by bright white on both sides. The marking does not reach the belly. Head with orange and red cheeks and opercle and two brilliant blue to aqua stripes. Base of pectoral and pelvic fins bright blue. A small dark spot on the upper rear caudal peduncle. Eye dark. Dorsal fins magenta pink basally with a bright yellow median stripe and magenta border. Tail magenta with yellow spotting and a single transverse yellow band through the lower half. Lobe unmarked pale pink under band. Anal fin pink with a yellow basal stripe that runs contiguous with the tail stripe. Pelvic fin blue. Pectoral fin clear.


Maximum size to 60mm SL.


Sandy bottoms from 1-14m.


Bahamas to Venezuela, mainly around islands.


Birdsong, R.S. 1981. A review of the gobiid fish genus Microgobius Poey. Bulletin of Marine Science v. 31 (no. 2): 267-306.

Tornabene, L. , J.L. van Tassell and D.R. Robertson. 2012. Microgobius urraca (Teleostei: Gobiidae), a new species of goby from the tropical eastern Pacific. Zootaxa No. 3447: 41-55.