New species of the month: the Mediterranean’s smallest fish

Part of the Gobiidae, the most diverse fish family in the Mediterranean sea, Pomatoschistus nanus can measure as little as 23mm. It was first discovered by divers in Turkey, and joins 12 other species from the same genus.

Both DNA markers and morphological features were assessed to determine that P. nanus is a new species. The DNA samples were collected from fin clips, which showed the new species to be most closely related to P. bathiP. nanus has a markedly smaller body size than the other species in this genus.

Although this is a recently found species, its future may be in jeopardy as extinction risks of species in the Levantine basin increases. This discovery shows that there is still room for exploration of harder-to-reach fish in the Mediterranean.


The original paper can be found here.


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