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Twelve new records of gobies and clingfishes (Pisces: Teleostei) significantly increase small benthic fish diversity of Maltese waters

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MARCELO KOVAČIĆ (http://orcid.org/0000-0002-4049-9366), PATRICK J. SCHEMBRI
MARCELO KOVAČIĆ, PATRICK J. SCHEMBRI

Abstract


Twelve new first records of species from two families are added to the list of known marine fishes from Malta based on laboratory study of material collected during fieldwork over a period of more than twenty years. The three new records of clingfishes (Apletodon incognitus, Gouania wildenowi, Opeatogenys gracilis) double the known diversity of Gobiesocidae for the area; the nine new records of gobies (Chromogobius zebratus, Gobius ater, Gobius fallax, Gobius gasteveni, Gobius roulei, Lebetus guilleti, Odondebuenia balearica, Speleogobius llorisi, Vanneaugobius dollfusi) increase by almost a half the known diversity of Maltese Gobiidae. The most enigmatic species reported is G. ater, for which the most recent published record is two decades old and based on specimens that had actually been collected back in the 19th century. Checklists of the Gobiesocidae and Gobiidae of Maltese waters are presented. Biodiversity and biogeographic implications of the present findings are discussed.


Keywords


New findings; fishes; Gobiidae; Gobiesocidae; checklists; Mediterranean Sea.

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