As we begin wrapping up yet another full year of reporting every aspect of saltwater aquarium news, we’re approaching our annual year-end recaps of all the new species that grabbed our attention in 2019. As usual some very abundant groups dominate the Top 10 New Species recaps and this year it was the gobies that really added to the latinized body count.
We didn’t even cover every single new species of the small bottom dwelling cylindrical fishes, but instead prioritized the ones that are likely to be suitable for aquarium life, or are related to species we already keep. It was certainly no surprise to see an abundance of the nano, dwarf, and pygmy gobies of the Eviota and Trimma genera add to their numbers, and we even perused a new complete key to over 100 species of Trimma!
But of particular interest in 2019 was the official description of two small gobies that have already been enjoyed by small fish aquarist before. Many had long suspected that the Hector’s gobies from the Red Sea were somewhat different from Koumansetta hectori from the rest of the world, and taxonomists agreed enough to erect a separate species for it. Additionally, the magnificent fan shrimp goby which was long ascribed to the Flabelligobius genus has in fact been formally classified as a species of Tomiyamichthys.
We have a lot more recaps to go for new species of marine life that were given the binomial nomenclature treatment this past year so stay tuned, because there’s a lot more than gobies for us all to add to our mental aquarium libraries.