Pomatoschistus microps
   (Krøyer, 1838)

Common names: English: Common goby
German: Strandgrundel, Strandküling

Common synonyms: none.

Length: 5 - 7 cm.

Brownish grey; back side and operculum spotted. Dark spots along midline. Dark bar beween eye and mouth. Males with black spot in D1 (more close to base than to margin); see P. minutus; breeding males with up to 10 vertical bars on side, dark breast, underside of head slightly orange. Females without dark spot in D1.

Snout shorter than eye-diameter. Break in profile at eyes. Caudal fin rounded. Praedorsal area and breast naked. Females often with thick belly, tadpole-like. Similar to P. minutus.
39-52 scales in lateral series.
Fins: D1 VI (V-VII); D2 I+8-9 (8-11); A I+8-9 (7-10); P 17-19 (15-20).

Carnivorous; small crustaceans, polychaets, larvae of insects.

Spawning peak in Mediterranean: May to July. Fecundity: up to 4000 eggs. Egg ptaches in the field range from 700 - 5400 eggs. Age: 2 years.

1 - 10 m. Soft bottoms. Mainly in brackish water and salt works. In groups. Rare in Mediterranean.

Pomatoschistus microps, male
Photograph: Andy Horton ©



Species list
General info


Mediterranean: in north western part. Atlantic: main distribution.



Literature on Pomatoschistus microps

Ahnelt H., 1991: Some rare fishes from the western Mediterranean Sea . Ann. Nat. Mus. Wien 92: 49-58.

Bouchereau, J.-L., 1997a: Biodiversity of tactics used by three Gobiidae (Pisces; Teleostei): Pomatoschistus minutus (Pallas, 1770), P. microps (Kroyer, 1838), Gobius niger Linnaeus, 1758, to survive in a Mediterranean lagoon environment. Ocean. Stud. 26: 153-170.

Bouchereau, J.-L., 1997b: Comparison of life history strategies of three Gobiidae Pomatoschistus minutus (Pallas, 1770), P. microps (Kroyer, 1838), Gobius niger Linneus [Linnaeus], 1758, (Pisces, Teleostei) over their geographical range. Ocean. Stud. 26: 171-190.

Bouchereau, J.-L., J.-C. Joyeux & J.-P. Quignard, 1989: Structure de la population de Pomatoschistus microps (Kroyer, 1838) poissons, gobiides, lagune de Mauguio (France). Vie Milieu 39: 19-28.

Bouchereau, J.-L., J.-C. Joyeux, J.-A. Tomasini & J.-P. Quignard, 1989: Cycle sexuel, fecondites et condition de Pomatoschistus microps (Kroyer, 1838) (gobiides) dans la lagune de Mauguio - France. Bull Ecol. 20: 193-202.

Bouchereau, J.-L., J.-P. Quignard, J.-C. Joyeux & J.-A. Tomasini, 1991: Strategies et tactiques de reproduction de Pomatoschistus microps (Kroyer, 1838) et de Pomatoschistus minutus (Pallas, 1770) (Pisces, Gobiidae) dans le Golfe du Lion (France). Nids, determinismes de la sedentarite et de la migration. Cybium 15: 315-346.

Bouchereau, J.-L., J.-P. Quignard, J.-C. Joyeux & J.-A. Tomasini, 1993: Structure du stock des geniteurs de la population de Pomatoschistus microps (Kroyer, 1838) (Gobiidae), dans la lagune de Mauguio, France. Cybium 17: 3-15.

Bouchereau, J.-L. & O. Guelorget, 1998: Comparison of three Gobiidae (Teleostei) life history strategies over their geographical range. Ocean. Acta 21: 503-517.

Collignon J., 1979: Calalogue raisonne des poissons des mers Marocaines 4. Partie. Bull. Inst. Pech. Mar. Maroc 24: 83-155:

De Buen E., 1923: Gobius de la Peninsula Iberica y Baleares. Grupos Lesueurii, Colonianus, Affinis y Minutus. Mem. Inst. eso. Oceonaogr. 3: 121-266.

Fernandez-Colome J.V., Rodriguez-Tejeiro J.D. & A. de-Sastoa, 1987: The role of environmental changes in the biological rhythms of the benthic migratory fish, Pomatoschistus microps. Europ. Mar. Biol. Symp. Unpaginated abstract.

Guitel F., 1892: Observations sur les moeurs du Gobius minutus. Archs Zool. exp. gen. 10: 499-555.

Gysels E.S., B. Hellemans, C. Pampulie & A.M. Volckaert, 2004: Phylogeography of the common goby, Pomatoschistus microps, with particular emphasis on the colonization of the Mediterranean and the North Sea . Molecular Ecology 13: 403-417.

Horne P.J., 1985: The feedinf biology of the common goby, Pomatoschistus microps (Teleostei: Gobiidae). PhD. thesis, Univ. Bristol.

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.

Krøyer H.N., 1838: Danmarks Fiske. Kjøbenhavn. 1: 1-616.

Lebour M.V., 1920: The eggs of Gobius minutus, pictus, and microps. J. mar. biol. Ass. U.K. 12: 253-260.

Louisy P., 2002: Meeresfische, Westeuropa, Mittelmeer. Ulmer, Stuttgart.

Marques J.F., Fonseca, V.F., Shao, Z. et al., 2012: Genetic diversity of Pomatoschistus microps (Perciformes: Gobiidae) in ecologically differentiated estuarine systems. Folia Zoologica 61: 106-117.

Miller P.J., 1986: Gobiidae. In: Fishes of the North-eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean . Volume III. (Eds.: Whitehead P.J.P. et al.) pp. 1019-1085. UNESCO, Paris.

Miller P.J., 2004: Pomatoschistus microps (Krøyer, 1838). In: The freshwater fishes of Europe. Vol. 8/II Gobiidae 2 (Ed.: Miller P.J.) pp. 293-330. Aula-Verlag, Wiebelsheim.

Padoa E., 1953: Sottordine Gobiiformes. Famiglia Gobiidae in uova, larve e stadi giovanili di Teleostei. Fauna Flora Golfo Napoli, 38: 648-678.

Pampoulie C., 2001: Demographic structure and life history traits of the common goby Pomatoschistus microps (Teleostei, Gobiidae) in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon ( Rhone River delta, France ). Act. Oecol. 22: 253-257.

Pampoulie C., S. Morand, A. Lambert, E. Rosecchi, J.L. Bouchereau & A.J. Crivelli, 1999: Influence of the trematode Aphalloides coelomicola Dollfus, Chabaud & Golvan, 1957 on the fecundity and survival of Pomatoschistus microps (Kroyer, 1838) (Teleostei: Gobiidae).

Pampoulie C., J.L. Bouchereau, E. Rosecchi, G. Poizat, A.J. Crivelli, 2000: Annual variations in the reproductive traits of Pomatoschistus microps in a Mediterranean lagoon undergoing environmental changes: evidence of phenotypic plasticity. J. Fish Biol. 57: 1441-1452.

Pampoulie,C., P.Sasal, E. Rosecchi, I. Auby, J.-L Bouchereau, K Lindstrom & A.J. Crivelli, 2001: Nest use by the common goby Pomatoschistus microps in Camargue (France). Ethol. Ecol. Evol. 13: 181-192.

Pampulie C., P. Chauvelon, E. Rosecchi, J.-L. Bouchereau & A.J. Crivelli, 2001: Environmental factors influencing the gobiid assemblage of a Mediterranean Lagoon: empirical evidence from a long-term study. Hydrobiologia 445: 175-181.

Patzner R.A. & H. Moosleitner, 1999: Die Grundeln des Mittelmeeres. Teil 5. Kleine Grundeln des Weichbodens 2. Das Aquarium. 370: 54-60.

Petersen C.G.J., 1891: On the eggs and breeding of our Gobiidae. Rep. Dan. biol. Stn. 2: 1-9.

Petersen C.G.J., 1919: Our gobies (Gobiidae) from the egg to the adult stages. Rep. Dan. biol. Stn. 26: 47-66.

Riehl R., 1978: Zur Fischfauna von Ibiza, Balearen. Senckenbergiana biol. 59: 173-182.

Rogers S.I., 1989: Seasonal variation in fecundity and egg size of the common goby, Pomatoschistus microps. J. mar. biol. Ass U.K. 69: 535-543.

Sasal P & C. Pampoulie, 2000: Assymetry, reproductive success and parasitism of Pomatoschistus microps in a French lagoon. J. Fish Biol. 57: 382-390.

Tougard C., Folly J., Berrebi P., 2014: New light on the evolutionary history of the common goby (Pomatoschistus microps) with an emphasis on colonization processes in the Mediterranean Sea. PLoS ONE 9 e91576.







Photograph of Pomatoschistus microps



Pomatoschistus microps, breeding male
Photograph: Andy Horton ©


links to further photographs:

Photograph 1    by © Erling Svensen

Photograph 2    by © Erling Svensen





Drawings of Pomatoschistus microps

Drawings from Miller (1986)

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