Asterropteryx profunda, a new species of goby (Pisces: Gobiidae) from Papua New Guinea and Indonesia

Gerald R. Allen and Mark V. Erdmann

aqua International Journal of Ichthyology,  pp. 145-154, Volume 22 issue 4, 22 October 2016

A new species of goby, Asterropteryx profunda, is described on the basis of three adult specimens, 9.5-10.9 mm SL, from Milne Bay Province in Papua New Guinea and Lembeh Strait, North Sulawesi Province of Indonesia. It has also been photographed at Anilao, Luzon, Philippines. The new taxon is a member of the spinosa  complex of Asterropteryx, which also includes A. ipunctata, A. ovata, A. senoui,  and A. spinosa  from the tropical western Pacific. It most closely resembles A. bipunctata  and A. ovata, which are characterized by numerous orange spots on the head and body and a conspicuous black spot on the caudal-fin base. However, it differs notably from both species in possessing a broad, black bar below the eye, a vertically ovate rather than a round or horizontally ovate marking on the caudal-fin base, and lacking a filamentous fourth dorsal spine in adults. It further differs from A. ovata  in having all the preopercular spines of similar size and from A. bipunctata  in lacking a large black spot at the base of the first three dorsal spines. The new species occurs in relatively deep water, approximately 45-70 m, compared to other members of the genus.

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