Animalia > Chordata > Actinopterygii > Perciformes > Gobiidae > Neogobius > Neogobius melanostomus

Neogobius melanostomus (Round goby; Ginger goby; Caspian round goby; Black spotted goby)

Synonyms: Apollonia melanostoma; Gobius affinis; Gobius cephalarges; Gobius chilo; Gobius exanthematosus; Gobius grossholzii; Gobius lugens; Gobius melanio; Gobius melanostomus; Gobius sulcatus; Gobius virescens; Neogobius cephalarges; Neogobius cephalarges cephalarges; Neogobius melanostoma; Neogobius melanostomus affinis; Ponticola cephalarges
Language: Bulgarian; Danish; Estonian; Finnish; French; German; Greek; Latvian; Lithuanian; Mandarin Chinese; Persian; Polish; Romanian; Russian; Spanish; Turkish

Wikipedia Abstract

The round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) is a euryhaline bottom-dwelling goby of the family Gobiidae, native to central Eurasia including the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. Round gobies have established large non-native populations in the Baltic Sea, several major Eurasian rivers, and the North American Great Lakes.
View Wikipedia Record: Neogobius melanostomus

Invasive Species

Neogobius melanostomus is a bottom dweller found in rivers and near the shore of lakes, preferring rocky habitats with many places to hide. It preys on small fish, such as darters and the eggs of lake trout, and many other fish. Adult Neogobius melanostomus aggressively defend spawning sites and will occupy prime spawning areas, preventing native species from utilising these sites. This fish may out-compete native fish for food resources, due to its ability to feed in darkness. Neogobius melanostomus often eats bivalves that filter water and becomes a vector of bioaccumulation, with contaminants becoming passed on to the larger game fish or humans that eat them. There is little information on successful management options for this species.
View ISSG Record: Neogobius melanostomus


Female Maturity [2]  2 years
Male Maturity [3]  3 years 6 months
Diet [1]  Carnivore
Adult Length [2]  10 inches (25 cm)
Brood Dispersal [2]  In a nest
Brood Egg Substrate [2]  Speleophils (cavity generalist)
Brood Guarder [2]  Yes
Litter Size [2]  1,000
Maximum Longevity [2]  4 years
Water Biome [1]  Lakes and Ponds, Rivers and Streams, Brackish Water


Name Countries Ecozone Biome Species Report Climate Land
Central & Western Europe Austria, Belgium, Byelarus, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom Palearctic Temperate Floodplain River and Wetlands    
Laurentian Great Lakes Canada, United States Nearctic Large Lakes    
Northern Baltic Drainages Denmark, Finland, Norway, Russia, Sweden Palearctic Polar Freshwaters    
St. Lawrence Canada, United States Nearctic Temperate Coastal Rivers    
Upper Mississippi United States Nearctic Temperate Floodplain River and Wetlands    

Protected Areas

Name IUCN Category Area acres Location Species Website Climate Land Use
Burgasko ezero 7641 Bulgaria  
Karadagskiy Zapovednik Nature Zapovednik 13876 Ukraine  
Kavkazskiy Biosphere Reserve Ia 692723 Krasnodar, Karachay-Cherkessia, Adygea, Russia
Khazar Zapovednik State Nature Reserve Ia 658105 Turkmenistan  
Zaliv Chengene skele 472 Bulgaria  


Prey / Diet

Abra segmentum[4]
Balanus improvisus (Bay barnacle)[5]
Boiga dendrophila (Gold-ringed Cat Snake, Mangrove Snake)[4]
Cerastoderma edule (Common cockle)[6]
Dikerogammarus villosus[7]
Dreissena bugensis (quagga mussel)[8]
Dreissena polymorpha (zebra mussel)[8]
Idotea balthica (gewone zeepissebed)[6]
Lentidium mediterraneum[6]
Mytilaster lineatus[6]
Mytilus galloprovincialis (Mediterranean mussel)[6]
Palaemon elegans (rockpool prawn)[5]
Rhithropanopeus harrisii (estuarine mud crab)[5]
Sergentia coracina (chironomid)[8]
Xantho poressa[6]

Prey / Diet Overlap

Competing SpeciesCommon Prey Count
Alosa pseudoharengus (kyack)1
Blicca bjoerkna (White bream)1
Calidris canutus (Red Knot)1
Chroicocephalus ridibundus (Common Black-headed Gull)1
Coregonus hoyi (Bloater)1
Cottus cognatus (Anadyr sculpin)1
Haematopus ostralegus (Eurasian Oystercatcher)1
Larus argentatus (Herring Gull)1
Larus canus (Mew Gull)2
Limosa lapponica (Bar-tailed Godwit)1
Lipophrys pholis (Shanny)1
Lota lota (Thin-tailed burbot)1
Mergellus albellus (Smew)2
Mesogobius batrachocephalus (Knout goby)4
Mullus surmuletus (Red mullet)1
Myoxocephalus quadricornis (Alaska fourhorn sculpin)1
Neogobius fluviatilis (Sand goby)2
Numenius arquata (Eurasian Curlew)1
Osmerus mordax (Rainbow smelt)1
Perca flavescens (Yellow perch)1
Perca fluviatilis (River perch)1
Pleuronectes platessa (European plaice)1
Pluvialis squatarola (Grey Plover)1
Scorpaena maderensis (Madeira rockfish)1
Spinachia spinachia (fifteenspine stickleback)1
Tadorna tadorna (Common Shelduck)1
Trachurus mediterraneus (Mediterranean scad)1
Vimba vimba (Vimba bream)1
Zoarces viviparus (viviporous blenny)1


Lota lota (Thin-tailed burbot)[8]
Mergus serrator (Red-breasted Merganser)[4]
Micropterus dolomieu (Smallmouth bass)[8]
Oncorhynchus kisutch (coho salmon or silver salmon)[8]
Oncorhynchus mykiss (redband trout)[8]
Oncorhynchus tshawytscha (chinook salmon or king salmon)[8]
Palaemon elegans (rockpool prawn)[4]
Phocoena phocoena (Harbor Porpoise)[9]
Ponticola kessleri (Bighead goby)[4]
Salmo trutta (Brown trout)[8]
Salvelinus namaycush (American lake char)[8]
Sander vitreus (Walleye)[8]


Parasitized by 
Acanthocephaloides propinquus[10]
Acanthocephalus dirus[10]
Acanthocephalus lucii[10]
Acanthostomum imbutiformis <Unverified Name>[10]
Anisakis schupakovi <Unverified Name>[10]
Apatemon gracilis[10]
Aspidogaster limacoides[10]
Asymphylodora demeli[10]
Asymphylodora pontica[10]
Bacciger grandispinatus[10]
Cardiocephaloides longicollis[10]
Clinostomum complanatum[10]
Corynosoma strumosum[10]
Cosmocephalus obvelatus <Unverified Name>[10]
Cryptocotyle concava[10]
Cryptocotyle lingua[10]
Cucullanellus heterochrous <Unverified Name>[10]
Cucullanellus minutus <Unverified Name>[10]
Dichelyne minutus <Unverified Name>[10]
Diplostomum spathaceum[10]
Eustrongylides excisus <Unverified Name>[10]
Eustrongylides tubifex <Unverified Name>[10]
Galactosomum lacteum[10]
Gyrodactylus alviga[4]
Gyrodactylus flesi[10]
Gyrodactylus gussevi[10]
Gyrodactylus nov <Unverified Name>[10]
Gyrodactylus proterorhini[10]
Gyrodactylus wageneri <Unverified Name>[10]
Helicometra fasciata[10]
Ichthyocotylurus pileatus[10]
Leptorhynchoides thecatus[10]
Ligula pavlovskii[10]
Magnibursatus skrjabini[10]
Maritrema subdolum[10]
Mesorchis metacercaria <Unverified Name>[10]
Metagonimus yokogawai[10]
Paracanthocephaloides incrassatus[10]
Pomphorhynchus laevis[10]
Proteocephalus ambloplitis <Unverified Name>[10]
Pygidiopsis genata[4]
Raphidascaris acus <Unverified Name>[10]
Rhabdochona decaturensis <Unverified Name>[10]
Scolex pleuronectis <Unverified Name>[10]
Stephanostomum bicoronatum[10]
Streptocara crassicauda <Unverified Name>[10]
Telosentis exiguus[10]

Institutions (Zoos, etc.)

Institution Infraspecies / Breed 
Budapest Zool.& Botanical Garden
Columbus Zoo and Aquarium
Detroit Zoological Society
John G. Shedd Aquarium
Toledo Zoological Gardens

Range Map

America, North - Inland waters; Aral Sea; Asia - Inland waters; Atlantic Ocean; Atlantic, Northeast; Austria; Azerbaijan; Baltic Sea; Black Sea; Bulgaria; Canada; Caspian Sea; Danube; Don; Estonia; Europe - Inland waters; Europe: Sea of Azov, Black Sea and Caspian basins. Adverse ecological impact after introduction have been reported by several countries.; Europe: Sea of Azov, Black Sea and Caspian basins. Adverse ecological impact after introduction have been reported by several countries. In 2004, this was accidentally introduced in North America with ballast water in ships (Ref. 59043).; Georgia; Germany, Fed. Rep.; Great Lakes; Iran (Islamic Rep. of); Kazakhstan; Kuban River; Mediterranean and Black Sea; Nearctic; Netherlands; Palearctic; Poland; Romania; Russian Federation; Sea of Marmara; Serbia and Montenegro; Turkey; Turkmenistan; USA (contiguous states); Ukraine; Uzbekistan; Volga;



Attributes / relations provided by
1Myers, P., R. Espinosa, C. S. Parr, T. Jones, G. S. Hammond, and T. A. Dewey. 2006. The Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed February 01, 2010 at
2Frimpong, E.A., and P. L. Angermeier. 2009. FishTraits: a database of ecological and life-history traits of freshwater fishes of the United States. Fisheries 34:487-495.
3de Magalhaes, J. P., and Costa, J. (2009) A database of vertebrate longevity records and their relation to other life-history traits. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 22(8):1770-1774
4Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics.
5Diet composition of two gobiid species in the Khadzhibey Estuary (North-Western Black Sea, Ukraine), Sergiy Kudrenko, Yuriy Kvach, ACTA UNIVERSITATIS NICOLAI COPERNICI PRACE LIMNOLOGICZNE NR 24 – LIMNOLOGICAL PAPERS N° 24 NAUKI MATEMATYCZNO-PRZYRODNICZE – ZASZYT 112 – TORUŃ 2005
6FEEDING ECOLOGY OF SOME BENTHIC FISH SPECIES FROM THE ROMANIAN BLACK SEA COAST (AGIGEA-EFORIE NORD AREA), Irina ROȘCA and Victor SURUGIU, Analele Științifice ale Universității „Al. I. Cuza” Iași, s. Biologie animală, Tom LVI, 2010
7Food Habits of Four Bottom-Dwelling Gobiid Species at the Confluence of the Danube and Hron Rivers (South Slovakia), Zdeněk Adámek, Jaroslav Andreji, José Martín Gallardo, International Review of Hydrobiology, Volume 92, Issue 4-5, pages 554–563, August 2007
8NOAA, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory
9THE DIET OF HARBOUR PORPOISE (PHOCOENA PHOCOENA) IN THE NORTHEAST ATLANTIC, M. B. SANTOS & G. J. PIERCE, Oceanography and Marine Biology: an Annual Review 2003, 41, 355–390
10Gibson, D. I., Bray, R. A., & Harris, E. A. (Compilers) (2005). Host-Parasite Database of the Natural History Museum, London
Ecoregions provided by World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF). WildFinder: Online database of species distributions, ver. 01.06 WWF WildFINDER
Protected Areas provided by Natura 2000, UK data: © Crown copyright and database right [2010] All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100017955
Biological Inventories of the World's Protected Areas in cooperation between the Information Center for the Environment at the University of California, Davis and numerous collaborators.
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