Didogobius splechtnai
   Ahnelt & Patzner, 1995

Common names: English: Splechtna's goby
German: Splechtna-Grundel

Synonyms: none

Length: 3 - 4 cm.

Whitish with four large dark-brown bands across the body. Juveniles with conspicious dark spot in D1.

First ray of D1 elongated. Scales much larger than in D. bentuvii. Praedorsal area and head nacked.
28-30 scales in lateral series.
Fins: D1 VI; D2 I+9-10; A I+9; P 15-16.


Spawning season in April and May.

This species lives on rocky shores in deep caves in water depths from 5 to 56 m, usually resting directly in front of its hole (Herler et al., 1999). It was also found in small cavities near seagrass( Herler and Patzner, 2002). In depths of more than 50 m it once was caught outside a cave (Ahnelt and Dorda, 2004). Rare.

Didogobius splechtnai
Photograph: Robert A. Patzner ©
Ibiza, Baleares, 9 m depth, cave, September 1992


Species list
General info


Mediterranean; Baleares, Lampedusa (Italy), northern Adriatic, Tyrrhenian Sea, Sicily (verified after photograph), southern France, southern Italy and southern Aegean Sea.



Literature on Didogobius splechtnai

Ahnelt H. & J. Dorda, 2004: Gobioid fishes from the north eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean: new records and rarely found species. Ann. Nat. Hist. Mus. Wien 105B: 5-19.

Ahnelt H. & R.A. Patzner, 1995: A new species of Didogobius (Teleostei: Gobiidae) from the western Mediterranean. Cybium 19: 95-102.

Can, A. & M. Bilecenoglu, 2005. Turkiye denizlerinin dip baliklari atlasi. Arkadas yayinevi, Ankara, 224 p.

Francour P., M. Bilecenoglu & M. Kaya, 2007: In situ observations on new and rare gobies from the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Rapp. Comm. int. Mer médit., 38: 478.

Francour P., Bodilis P., Cottalorda J.M., Seytre C. 2010. Inventaire des Gobiidae dans la Réserve Naturelle de Scandola (Corse) et à proximité de ses limites. Contrat Parc Naturel Régional de la Corse. Université de Nice-Sophia Antipolis, ECOMERS publ., Nice: 1-54.

Herler J. & R.A. Patzner, 2001: Microhabitats of cryptobenthic gobies in submarine cave systems. 10. Europ. Congr. Ichthyol, Prague. p. 105.

Herler J. & R.A. Patzner, 2002: New records of Didogobius splechtnai Ahnelt & Patzner, 1955 (Pisces: Gobiidae) from the Tyrrhenian and northern Adriatic Sea. Cybium 26: 153-155.

Herler J., H. Ahnelt & S. Scsepka, 1999: Morphologische Untersuchungen an zwei höhlenbewohnenden Meergrundeln (Pisces: Gobiidae) des westlichen Mittelmeeres. Ann. Naturhist. Mus. Wien 101B: 489-507.

Herler J., Patzner R.A., Ahnelt H., Hilgers H., 1999: Habitat selection and ecology of two speleophilic gobiid fishes (Pisces: Gobiidae) from the western Mediterranean Sea. P.S.Z.N. Mar. Ecol. 20: 49-62.

Kovacic M., 2020: Checklist of gobies (Teleostei: Gobiidae) of the Mediterranean Sea and a key for species identification. Zootaxa 4877: 075-101.

Kovacic M. & Patzner R.A., 2011: North-Eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean Gobies. In: The Biology of Gobies. (Eds: Patzner R.A. et al.) Science Publishers: 177-206.

Kovacic M., Sanda R. & Kirincic M., Zanella D., 2012: Geographic distribution of gobies (Gobiidae) in the Adriatic Sea with thirteen new records for its southern part. Cybium 36: 435-445.

Patzner R.A., 1999: Habitat utilization and depth distribution of small cryptobenthic fishes (Blenniidae, Gobiesocidae, Gobiidae, Tripterygiidae) at Ibiza (western Mediterranean Sea). Enviroment. Biol. Fish. 55: 207-214.

Patzner R.A. & H. Moosleitner, 1998: Die Grundeln des Mittelmeeres. Teil 4. Kleine Grundeln des Hartbodens 1. Das Aquarium 348: 40-44.

Patzner R.A. & J. Herler, 2001: Mikrohabitate von kryptobenthischen Meergrundeln in marinen Höhlensystemen. 3. Tg. Ges. Ichthyol., Wien. p. 37.

Scsepka S., H. Ahnelt, J. Herler & H. Hilgers, 1999: Morphology of two rare Mediterranean gobiid fishes (Teleostei: Gobiidae). Cybium 23: 169-187.

Stefanni S., 1999: A new record of Didogobius splechtnai Ahnelt & Patzner, 1995 (Gobiidae) from the central Mediterranean Sea. Cybium 23: 105-107.


Photographs of Didogobius splechtnai

Didogobius splechtnai,
in front of its hiding place
Ibiza, Baleares, 8 m depth, cave, September 1992
Photograph: Robert A. Patzner ©
Didogobius splechtnai
Ibiza, Baleares, 10 m depth, cave, September 1994
Photograph: Robert A. Patzner ©
Didogobius splechtnai
Near Terrauzza, Siracura, Sicily, Italy, 22 m depth, cave, 1999
Photograph: Alessandro Pagano ©
Didogobius splechtnai
Ibiza, Baleares, 9 m depth, cave, July 1998
Photograph: Robert A. Patzner ©


Drawings of Didogobius splechtnai

Didogobius splechtnai male, holotype 22.7 + 5.1 mm, Ibiza (leg. Patzner).

Drawing by H. Ahnelt from Ahnelt & Patzner (1995).


Didogobius splechtnai head lateral-line sensory papillae an canal pores (greec lettering) of holotype (top) and paratype (bottom). AN, PN anterior and posterior nostrils. Holotype 22.7 + 5.1 mm, Ibiza (leg. Patzner).

Drawings by H. Ahnelt from Ahnelt & Patzner (1995).




Copyright © 2016 - Robert A. Patzner, Department of Ecology and Evolution, Univ. Salzburg, Austria.
State: 2016-04-17
E-mail: robert.patzner@sbg.ac.at