Cocos Frillgoby, Bathygobius cocosensis (Bleeker 1854)

Other Names: Cocos Frill-goby, Cocos Goby, Dusky Sand-goby, Padang Frill-goby

A Cocos Frillgoby, Bathygobius cocosensis, at Bundeena, New South Wales, November 2017. Source: Aaron Payne / License: CC By Attribution-NonCommercial

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2017, Bathygobius cocosensis in Fishes of Australia, accessed 07 Dec 2019,

Cocos Frillgoby, Bathygobius cocosensis (Bleeker 1854)

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Dirk Hartog Island, Western Australia, to the English Company Island, Northern Territory, and the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland, to Moruya, New South Wales; also at Lord Howe Island and Norfolk Island in the Tasman Sea. Inhabits silty intertidal reef flats, rubble and sandy areas adjacent to reefs.


Dorsal fin VII, 9; Anal fin I, 8. 
upper 4-5 pectoral rays branched to base, tips membrane-free; rounded caudal fin; longitudinal scale series 37-38; predorsal scales 10-12, nearly reaching to above rear margin of preopercle; scales absent on cheek and operculum; ctenoid body scales, becoming cycloid on abdomen, breast and nape; depressed head, width greater than depth; depth of body 5.0 in SL


Mottled brown overall, with five alternating irregular whitish and brown blotches or saddles dorsally on body; lower half of side with 5-7 rectangular brown blotches; white spots and blotches on cheek and operculum.


Feeds on benthic invertebrates including polychaete worms, isopod and amphipod crustaceans, and small crabs.

Species Citation

Gobius cocosensis Bleeker 1854, Natuurkundig Tijdschrift voor Nederlandsch Indië 7: 47. Type locality: Nova Selma, Cocos Island.


Bray, D.J. 2017


Australian Faunal Directory

Cocos Frillgoby, Bathygobius cocosensis (Bleeker 1854)


Akihito, P. & Meguro, K. 1980. On the six species of the genus Bathygobius found in Japan. Japanese Journal of Ichthyology 27(3): 215-236 

Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls. 

Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp.

Allen, G.R., Hoese, D.F., Paxton, J.R., Randall, J.E., Russell, B.C., Starck, W.A., Talbot, F.H. & Whitley, G.P. 1976. Annotated checklist of the fishes of Lord Howe Island. Records of the Australian Museum 30(15): 365-454 figs 1-2 

Allen, G.R., Steene, R.C. & Orchard, M. 2007. Fishes of Christmas Island. Christmas Island : Christmas Island Natural History Association 2 edn, 284 pp. 

Allen, G.R. & Smith-Vaniz, W.F. 1994. Fishes of Cocos (Keeling) Islands. Atoll Research Bulletin 412: 1-21 

Allen, G.R. & Swainston, R. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A field guide for anglers and divers. Perth, WA : Western Australian Museum vi 201 pp., 70 pls. 

Bleeker, P. 1854. Bijdrage tot de kennis der ichthyologische fauna van de Kokos-eilanden. Natuurkundig Tijdschrift voor Nederlandsch Indië 7: 37-48 

Francis, M. 1993. Checklist of the coastal fishes of Lord Howe, Norfolk, and Kermadec Islands, southwest Pacific Ocean. Pacific Science 47(2): 136-170 figs 1-2 

Hoese, D.F. 1986. Family No. 240: Gobiidae. pp. 774-807 figs in Smith, M.M. & Heemstra, P.C. (eds). Smith's Sea Fishes. Johannesburg : Macmillan South Africa xx + 1047 pp. 144 pls. 

Hutchins, J.B. 2004. Fishes of the Dampier Archipelago, Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 66: 343–398 

Johnson, J.W. 2010. Fishes of the Moreton Bay Marine Park and adjacent continental shelf waters, Queensland, Australia. pp. 299-353 in Davie, P.J.F. & Phillips, J.A. Proceedings of the Thirteenth International Marine Biological Workshop, The Marine Fauna and Flora of Moreton Bay. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 54(3) 

Kuiter, R.H. 1992. Tropical Reef-Fishes of the Western Pacific, Indonesia and Adjacent Waters. Jakarta : PT Gramedia Pustaka Utama 314 pp. pls. 

Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 437 pp. 

Larson, H.K., Williams, R.S. & Hammer, M.P. 2013. An annotated checklist of the fishes of the Northern Territory, Australia. Zootaxa 3696(1): 1-293 

Myers, R.F. 1999. Micronesian Reef Fishes. A comprehensive guide to the coral reef fishes of Micronesia. Guam : Coral Graphics vi 330 pp. 192 pls. 

Ogilby, J.D. 1889. The reptiles and fishes of Lord Howe Island. Memoirs of the Australian Museum 2(3): 51-74 pls 2-3 (as Gobius aeolosoma)

Randall, J.E. 2005. Reef and shore fishes of the South Pacific. New Caledonia to Tahiti and the Pitcairn Islands. Honolulu : University of Hawaii Press 707 pp.

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 507 pp. figs. 

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs. 

Russell, B.C. 1983. Annotated checklist of the coral reef fishes in the Capricorn-Bunker group, Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. Special Publication Series 1: 1-184 figs 1-2

White, G. E. & Brown, C. 2015. Microhabitat use affects goby (Gobiidae) cue choice in spatial learning task. Journal of Fish Biology. doi: 10.1111/jfb.12638

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37428065

Depth:0-10 m

Fishing:Aquarium fish

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:12 cm TL

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