Goby Family
Whole Sand Goby 02g [family Gobiidae]

Gobies constitute one of the largest families of fish, but most are very small, ranging from 3/8 inches long to 12 inches long, but only a very few giant gobies are over 4 inches. Because of their size few gobies are food fish, but quite a few are popular aquarium fish.

Keo Fish / Cá Kèo   -   [Cáa Kèo (Viet); Pseudapocryptes elongatus alt P. lanceolatus]
Whole Keo Fish

This air breathing vegetarian fish, found from India to Tahiti and north to China, lives only in brackish waters, particularly in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam. It can grow to nearly 8 inches but the photo specimen was 7-1/2 inches and weighed 0.77 ounces. It was harvested wild in Vietnam where this fish is quite popular for a hot-pot soup named after it.   Details and Cooking.

Sand Goby   -   [Tank Goby (Fishbase), Flathead Goby; Ca bong cat, Ca bong da (Viet); Glossogobius giuris]
Whole Sand Goby

This fish is found in tropical fresh and brackish waters from the east coast of Africa to the South Pacific islands. Caught wild and farmed. It is absolutely gigantic - for a goby - most of which are between 1 and 4 inches long. This one gets as large as 19 inches in brackish water, less in fresh, but is generally marketed at about 9 inches and 3.2 oz.   Details and Cooking.

Spotted Goby   -   [??]
Whole Spotted Goby

The fish shown here, wild caught in Vietnam, are not any of the "spotted gobies" listed on Fishbase (note the squared off tail and exceeding long fin rays) but I'm not going to try to identify it further. Fishbase lists about a thousand gobies and has photos of only half of them, so some goby expert will have to ID this one. These fish measured about 5-3/4 inches long and weighed about 1 ounce each.   Details and Cooking.

Mud Skipper   -   [Goggle Eyed Goby; Cá Lá Bo Da, Cá bong sao, Cá Thoi Loi (Viet); Boleophthalmus boddarti]
Live Mud Skipper Goby

This fish is native to the coastal regions of tropical India, but mostly Southeast Asia, including Indonesia, Philippines and northern Australia. It is an amphibious fish, often seen feeding on algae in extremely shallow water or on mud flats. It can grow to a little over 8-1/2 inches long, and is sometimes seen in Southeast Asian markets (fishbase). Wikipedia seems a bit confused here, saying that Mud Skipper is used in a sour soup called Canh chua lá giang cá kèo, and giving the genus name of a fish found only in the Indian Ocean. That soup would be made with actual Cá Kèo (see above), which is very popular in Vietnam. IUCN Red Listed LC (Least Concern).   Photo by JJ Harrison distributed under license Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike v3.0 Unported.

Grass Goby   -   [Gò (Venice); Zosterisessor ophiocephalus formerly Gobius venetiarum]
Live Grass Goby Fish

This fish is native to the cost and lagoons all around the Mediterranean and grows to just under 10 inches. It is not much eaten in the region except in Venice, Italy where it is important for some local dishes. It is fished commercially in the Black Sea and Sea of Azov.   Photo by Florin Dumitrescu contributed to the public domain.

Round Goby   -   [Gobius venetiarum]
Live Round Goby Fish

This fish, native to Black and Caspian Sea regions, is now a serious invasive species in the Great Lakes region of North America. While it out competes a few small native fish, it's impact hasn't been all bad. It eats some invasive zebra and quagga mussels, unfortunately not enough to clear them out. It has also become a favored food for walleyes and largemouth and smallmouth bass (actually, not bass - they are perch, like the walleye). Some are eaten by lake sturgeon, which don't normally eat fish. They are also the salvation of the formerly threatened Lake Erie Watersnake, which now eats almost nothing but round gobies. These fish can grow to 9.7 inches and a weight of 2.8 ounces.   Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service = public domain .

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