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Fundulus heteroclitus  (Linnaeus, 1766)

Mummichog
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Image of Fundulus heteroclitus (Mummichog)
Fundulus heteroclitus
Picture by Terceira, A.C.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Cyprinodontiformes (Rivulines, killifishes and live bearers) > Fundulidae (Topminnows and killifishes)
Etymology: Fundulus: Latin, fundus = bottom; a peculiar name for a topminnow, coined for a bottom species of Atlantic coast being "the abode of the fundulus mudfish" (Ref. 45335).

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; freshwater; brackish; benthopelagic; non-migratory.   Temperate; 10°C - 24°C (Ref. 12468); 52°N - 28°N, 82°W - 57°W

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?, range 4 - ? cm
Max length : 15.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 27139); common length : 8.9 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 12193); max. reported age: 4 years (Ref. 59043)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Distinguished from nearly identical species Fundulus grandis by having the following characters: more convex upper profile; dark bars alternating with silvery interspaces on side; small ocellus at rear of dorsal fin of male; and each mandible with 4 pores (Ref. 86798).

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Western Atlantic: Gulf of St. Lawrence to northeast Florida, USA. Two subspecies were previously recognized: Fundulus heteroclitus heteroclitus and Fundulus heteroclitus macrolepidotus (Ref. 86798). Introduced to southern Portugal and southern Spain (Ref. 59043).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Occurs in saltwater marshes, tidal creeks and nearby fresh water (Ref. 86798). A resident intertidal species with homing behavior (Ref. 32612). Adults are mainly found in saltwater marshes and in tidal creeks. They may leave tide pools if aquatic conditions become inhospitable (Ref. 31184). They also enter fresh water to a limited extent (Ref. 7251). Not a seasonal killifish. They breathe air when out of water (Ref. 31184). Difficult to maintain in aquariums (Ref. 27139). Introduction has caused the decline of native species and near extinction of Aphanius baeticus in southwestern Spain (Ref. 59043).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Deposits eggs in the shells of Modiolus demissus (Ref. 26281).

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : Costa, Wilson J.E.M. | Collaborators

Page, L.M. and B.M. Burr, 2011. A field guide to freshwater fishes of North America north of Mexico. Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 663p. (Ref. 86798)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 96402)

CITES (Ref. 94142)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless




Human uses

Aquarium: commercial
FAO(Publication : search) | FisheriesWiki | Sea Around Us

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Estimates of some properties based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00813 (0.00307 - 0.02155), b=3.04 (2.81 - 3.27), based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)Family-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  3.6   ±0.48 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (tm<1; tmax=4).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Low vulnerability (16 of 100) .