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FAQs on Clown Gobies 2

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Related FAQs:  Gobiodons 1, Gobiodon Identification, Gobiodon Behavior, Gobiodon Compatibility, Gobiodon Selection, Gobiodon Systems, Gobiodon Feeding, Gobiodon Disease, Gobiodon Reproduction, True Gobies: True GobiesGobies 2Goby Identification, Goby Behavior, Goby Selection, Goby Compatibility, Goby Feeding, Goby Systems, Goby Disease, Goby Reproduction, Amblygobius Gobies, Neon GobiesGenus Coryphopterus Gobies, Mudskippers, Shrimp Gobies, Sifter Gobies

Gobiodon with urchin spine through the head. Shades of Old SteveM of SNL!

Rippled Coral Goby    3/23/17
<6.5 megs?>
Odd question for you... my green Rippled Coral Goby has taken a liking to my Colt Coral over the past week. During this time, his coloration has lightened dramatically. I'm curious if this some ill effect from the coral, or if this is some adaptation/camouflage type ability? Here's some before and after photos.
<Can't tell the cause, but this light coloring is not good. I would move this fish if you have another suitable system. Bob Fenner>

Re: Rippled Coral Goby    3/23/17
So sorry about the file size, I didn't realize at the time. This Rippled Coral Goby remains an aggressive eater, and I only noticed the color fade since he began roosting in my Colt. Color aside, he seems fine. This particular Colt Color is a very light pink. When I turn my pumps off - the signal for food! - he quickly swims to his roost up on the liverock and will jump in on the feeding action against my two clowns. None of my fish have been seen fighting one another, it's a pretty peaceful tank with a Royal Gramma and a yellow watchman goby.
<Well; up to you of course. Color change alone is not reason to fret.
Re: Rippled Coral Goby    3/23/17

Thanks. Will monitor closely. I guess I was just curious if the Coral Goby would slightly alter color to surroundings,
or if hanging out in corals could be harmful.
<Not likely; no. B>

Yellow Clown Goby; stkg.      7/26/13
Hi folks. I've been reading up on Yellow Clown Gobies an was wondering, since they're so small is it possible to have a pair?
<If there's room/habitat (size of tank, provision of branching coral/s?)...
and/or the two are "very familiar w/ each other">
I have read conflicting info about keeping them singly and/or in groups.
Right now I am keeping 2 Ocellaris clowns, a Banggai Cardinal, a Purple Pseudochromis, a Fireshrimp and an algae eating Urchin. Is it possible the Yellow Clown Goby will do well with these tankmates? And just one or will a pair be better suited?
<... Let's have you read here:
and here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/gobiodonsysfaq.htm
Bob Fenner>

Clown Goby ID, been looking forever and can't find.     2/16/13
She's about an inch long, maybe 3/4 inch, and at her widest part maybe half an inch. Had her since October, never changed size that I noticed, maybe a tiny tiny bit, always been these same colors, light pink, and magenta stripes on the eyes which appeared more noticeable over time in my tank after i first got her or him.. Definitely clown goby, but i can't find a pink one anywhere, and the brown ones don't have eye stripes, and she's never dark colored, always light like a yellow clown goby is, but different color. She tries to eat pellets (I have the small size formula 2 (green bottle?) but they're too big, so she gets frozen Mysis and FD daphnia from Hikari. I haven't seen her eat SPS yet (I have one Montipora digata German blue) but she does perch there if it's in a spot not in the open.
<... live on Acropora coral polyps mostly... May well color up (and grow) if/when provided. Ask your local livestock (or etailer) dealers to special order you some (more?) Gobiodon rivulatus... my guess as to the species here. Bob Fenner>
Thank you very much!

Starving Citron Goby, rdg.     5/28/12
I have a 55 gallon tank that has been running for about six months with 45 lbs of live rock and a few mushroom corals.  It has a percula clownfish, Firefish, tribal blenny, citron goby, and cleaner shrimp.  I have had the citron for a little over a month and I am worried that he is starving to death.
<Very common if so... Gobiodon live on and with Acropora (live table-top Staghorn corals) exclusively in the wild...>
 He is very thin and his stomach is caved in.  So far I have gotten him to eat Mysis shrimp and formula one.  He has an appetite but spits most of the food out it seems. 
<Surprised eats these at all>
He is otherwise very active, and all the other fish have been doing great and in the tank for awhile now.  He just seems to keep getting skinnier and I don't know what to do for him.  Is there a certain food I should be trying or a way to get him to eat more?
Thanks so much,
<Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/gobiodonfdgfaq.htm
and the linked files above... Bob Fenner>

Sick Clown Goby... reading re Gobiodon, on WWM 5/17/08 Hi - <Hello> I love your site and I have picked up so much good information, but I am still brand new to this and need some help. <Okay... glad to> I have a 46 gallon bowfront SW- fish only. Currently I have 35 lbs of live sand and approx 50 lbs of live rock. I am running a magnum 350 dual canister filter and a magnum hang on tank convertible canister filter. <Mmmm> My system has been set up for 3 months or so. As of yesterday my ammonia, nitrite and nitrates all tested at 0ppms - which is probably no surprise because the only thing I have in it aside from some hermit crabs and assorted snails are 3 green chromis - which I acquired three weeks ago and are thriving. I have a small in tank refugium set up .... with a bit of refugium mud and macro algae. I am trying to be on the cautious side, because a few weeks after I set up my tank and I was "sure" as any new impatient fish lover can be that it had cycled I purchased two false Perculas and lost them both within two weeks. But since everything seems to be going well right now, I decided to add two yellow clown gobies. <Gobiodon/s... really need fully established reef systems of size... with Acroporids (live) to live and feed on... and are not social animals really...> I QT them for a few days - they seem pretty laid back (one moreso than the other) but were eating - had nice color - no obvious signs of disease so I put them in my display tank. I realize they like to perch and watch a lot so I was not expecting them to be extremely active- and I did notice that one was more reserved than the other - so I was not surprised that they found some crevices to hide in. After a day the more assertive of the two started to come out - he has quite a personality and seems to love his tonga branches. But the quieter one stayed hiding in the crevices for another day or so and I was not able to get a good look at him. Well today I got a good look at his face - at first I thought he had a piece of flake food stuck to his lip but upon closer evaluation it looks more like a growth - he is also losing color in his cheeks and his body seems to be losing color as well.... and when I looked at him straight on his gills seem to almost balloon out as he is breathing. Currently I am trying to vary the fishes diets - mostly flakes and pellets <Mmmm, this won't "do it" nutritionally here> until I feel confident that I am not overfeeding. Occasionally cyclopeze - But I can't even entice this little guy to eat mysis shrimp. I have no idea how I am going to catch him if I need to put him in a hospital tank and no idea what I may be dealing with even if I do manage to wrangle him. Do you have any suggestions? I am not sure I can get a picture because he keeps hiding - but if I can get one should I send it along. I appreciate any advice... Very Cautious Chris <Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/gobiodon.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

How many gobies? Comp., Gobiodon, Gobiosoma    11/15/07 Hi all, We're thinking of adding some cleaner gobies and maybe a clown goby and I had some questions for you. We have a 60g tank with two clowns, a Banggai cardinal, two cleaner shrimp and some snails and hermit crabs. We're looking to add more cleaners to stave off ich and the like, also because from what I hear and read, gobies are good tank additions. <Some...> My question pertains to quantity and getting along between goby species. I've read up a bit on your site and just wanted to see if my plan holds water. I'm thinking that maybe a small group of neon gobies could be added, maybe 4-6? <Mmm, I'd stick with two. They are territorial, might fight. Two will do all the good cleaning-wise any other number might do here> And then maybe one or two clown gobies. <Do you have live Acropora for them to feed, live on?> Do you think this is too many gobies for our tank? These different types of gobies will get along in our tank size, yes? <Should, yes> That'd probably be it for fish in our tank. We're big on not overstocking. Also, we are using crushed coral at the moment, this isn't bad for them, right? <Not important... but other habitats presence is...> And the cleaner shrimp and cardinal shouldn't be a bad compatibility mix for them, right? <What species is/are the cleaner shrimp? Stenopids might consume these> And while I have your attention, do these fish get their food from the fish cleanings? <Mmm, the Cleaner gobies to a good extent. Gobiodon spp. mainly consume SPS polyps in the wild> Meaning that they could starve if the fish don't let the gobies clean? <Mmm, no... should be fed purposely... A refugium... with all that it implies is best here> I think I read that they also eat brine shrimp and such, but wanted to make sure they will in fact eat regular foods like formula one, Mysis, brine, krill, things like that. <Usually, yes> Thanks! ~Ashlin <Welcome. BobF>

Yellow Clown Goby in 10 gallon   12/29/06 Hi,      My yellow clown goby has been in his 10 gallon home for a week.  Bob, his white spots did go away and his skin has cleared up, but his tailfin is a bit frayed.  Should I be concerned?   <Mmm, a bit too soon to tell... This could well be a "stage" in the cycling of an external parasite... look for its return in a few days time>      To try and target feed him in the tank I started putting small bits of brine shrimp or Cyclop-eeze on the end of a bamboo skewer (used for shish kabobs) and swished it by where he's perched. <You must have good vision and eye-hand coordination!>   At first he'd dive under the rocks as soon as the stick hit the water and I think most of the food got pulled in by the filter so he wasn't eating much... but now he knows that food is attached to that stick he swims up to the skewer (blunt end definitely) and picks the shrimp off before I have a chance to shake it off in the water.  So, now I just hold the stick and he picks all the food off and then dives back to his artificial Acropora perch. I target feed him like that about 4 times daily, and a couple times I put very tiny bits of flake, just a few, on the surface and he swims up and eats that. He lost some weight during those first days when he hid from my feeding time so I am feeding him smaller bits more often at the moment. <Good>      I added the Talbot's damsel <A great small damsel species, but in a ten gallon? Too little space.> yesterday early evening and he was quickly gathered after less than a day in the tank and taken back to the LFS this afternoon after he kept 'charging' at the goby and chasing the goby when the goby left his perching spot for a short swim. <Yes... territoriality in too small a territory...> The goby hid for several hours after I had to remove all the large rocks to catch the damsel.  But he's back hopping/swimming from perch to rock all over the tank looking much more relaxed. I "might" consider putting one other fish in with him but in such a small system I'm pretty clueless and skeptical as to what would be a suitable tankmate that wouldn't get very big and be very easy going.  Would adding another yellow clown goby be a good or bad idea? <Bad... Gobiodon are territorial as well> A Neon goby? (The suggestion from staff person at LFS was one clown goby, one neon goby) <Mmm, no... keep looking is my advice>   I could be quite happy with the clown goby being the only fish in the tank (and by the looks of things I think he would be, too.)   The LFS staff person also suggested seahorses, but I think they might be very challenging to keep. <Can be... though the ones cultured by reputable outfits... of species that are and stay small... are not hard... See Ocean Rider's listserv... subscribe (it's free) and browse a while...>      I do plan to add some coral later. I'd like to do more research (especially regarding propagation to keep from overcrowding)  but at the time I'm thinking one small rock with a few Ricordea mushrooms, nano size rock of blue mushrooms, one or two types of zoanthid (nano size as well) and one small finger leather.  Other possible suggestions? <This will be enough here> Is that too much?  Oh sorry, lighting: 40 Watt 50/50 USA Current with moonlight.        I've seen some pretty red macroalgae in the LFS's tanks for sale.  Bad/Good idea to add into a tank? <Read re... on WWM> Does it depend on type?  If so, I'm sorry I didn't get the name of it.  Or is all macroalgae only meant for sumps and refugiums?          My immediate concern now is that the Tunze DOC nano skimmer I have in there seems to be emitting fine bubbles from the base of the unit.  They're really hard to see sometimes and it depends on the lighting. Also I have a Hagen Aqua Clear 70 (300) that is set up as a small refugium with some Chaeto, and it too seems to have bubbles forming (a bit larger though) as the water enters the tank.  Because of this I can see tiny bubbles just sitting on some areas of rock and on that artificial Acropora.  My concern is for the health of the goby because once the lights are out he moves from his artificial Acropora perch to laying on the rock which is directly under the outflow from the Aqua Clear.  With the main light off and only the light on the Aqua Clear for the Chaeto, the fine bubbles become much more visible and I can see them floating up and mixing with the outflow from the Aqua Clear.  Could he be 'breathing' in these bubbles?  Can it hurt him?  Will these bubbles cause problems for corals? <Fine bubbles are to be avoided... I might take the Tunze unit apart, check for fit of the components>     On another note: just curious... I noticed as the goby was laying on the rock a bristleworm stuck it's head out looking for some food.  Will its bristles irritate the goby if it comes in contact with the goby?   Thank you again, Debbie P. <Not problematical if small... Read my friend. Bob Fenner> Please help - Treatment of Gobies   6/19/06 Dear Mr. Fenner   I am writing to you in great distress, in the hope that you might be able to educate me further in the type of medications that can't be used on Clown Gobies.   With all the best intentions in the world, I put my Citron Goby in to my quarantine tank  to treat for a whitespot/velvet infection.  I started to treat her with Copper - Seachem Cupramine, to be exact.   I only put the first days dose in.  Everything seemed fine.  Later that day I then went to browse the web for more information on the Green Clown Gobies I was thinking of buying.  I stumbled across your very informative webpage for this breed, and noted, with horror that under the disease section of your Gobies page you write,   "Gobioids for the most part are relatively disease resistant, with the exception of one type of disease, environmental. Though they have cycloid or ctenoid scales, they have about the same intolerance of harsh chemical treatments as "naked" fishes. Many more are bumped off from copper, malachite and formalin- containing medicants than from the infectious diseases they're used against." <Yes>   In sheer panic, I rushed downstairs to see the horrific sight of my clown goby.  Her skin had literally started to dissolve, and there were parts of her fins eroding at the edges, and places where he skin had bubbled up.  Most horrifically, there were two places where the copper had eaten in to her body.  She also had what looked like red blood lines to the rear of her gills ... internal bleeding? Words cannot describe how devastated I am.      I rushed to do a 50% water change, using my main tank water, and started to run a PolyFilter, in order to significantly dilute the copper solution.   <Good moves>   30 hours on, she is still alive, and there has been no further damage to her skin that I can see.  I know that it is unlikely that she will survive this ordeal, but I am desperate to do all I can, and to make her as comfortable as possible.  I am daily testing the water parameters.  The QT is blacked out, and I am starting to lower the salinity, in order to keep and bacterial infections that could arise from the damage, at bay.   Yours is the only website I have found that indicates towards this problem with Gobies. <Mmm... a speculation re the "capacity", utility of the Net at this juncture. I and others have written (magazine articles, books) touching on this topic/issue for many years> I have purchased a copy of your book, and have read there what you have written about this also.   <Oh!>   My very experienced LFS also had not heard of this problem.   I was wondering whether you are able to tell me if this is a normal reaction by my clown goby to this treatment. <It is. Such "toxic" treatments, even with chelated copper solutions need to be carefully measured at about the near lowest physiological dose (0.15 ppm free cupric ion equivalent)> Also, does this happen to all Gobies?   <Nearly all... though smaller individuals, species are more direly and quickly mal-affected> I understand that this reaction is caused by copper, malachite and Formalin-containing medicants.  Does that mean any use of those mentioned substances, even at very low doses? <One can... in actual practice these materia-medica are used by public aquariums, wholesalers... daily>   Would there be any difference in reaction from chelated and non-chelated copper? <Mmm, oh yes... The free cupric ion is really the only important measure in both/all cases. Utilizing sequestered compounds only/allows for a more "steady" dosage... The chelated is better for hobbyists and commercial settings in almost all cases. Free copper (sulfate) solutions are of value for raceway, open, culture, some high-tech. settings>   Why is the Gobiodon reaction not a more widely know fact? <Mmm... ours seems an esoteric field... My next guess is that there are so few aquarists that "make it to" the level of serious keeping of this huge group of fishes that they have little chance/opportunity (as yet) to communicate their observations, findings>   I would be very appreciative of any further information and help that you could give me.   Kind regards   Claire Read-Ball <I do sincerely hope that you remain active in this hobby field... And strongly encourage you to pen an article for sale to the print and electronic media in our interest for your and all's edification. Bob Fenner>

Treatment of Gobies, Copper, Cupramine   7/10/06 Dear Mr. Fenner   Thank you so much for your kind reply a little while ago, when I wrote to you regarding the terrible incident I had with my Clown Goby having a horrific reaction to copper.  I thought that I would let you know that although my subsequent water changes prevented any further damage to her, she never really recovered, and died 5 days later. <Thank you for this update> I had been hoping that as she made it through 48 hours, she might recover, but I think the damage was too severe.   I also wrote to the company who makes the copper treatment, to see what their advice was on treating Gobies with copper.  I thought that you would be interested to see their reply, as they seem to think that copper does not have any ill affects on Gobies.  I would be interested to see what you think, before I reply to them:    "Cupramine works great on most copper sensitive fish like puffers and Angels. You will find that puffers are mush more sensitive to copper than gobies.  We have had many people use Cupramine on gobies and puffers without a problem. I'm sorry for what your goby is going through but I can assure you it is not from the proper use of Cupramine. One dose of Cupramine (1 ml per 10.5 gallons) will result in a copper concentration of 0.25 mg/L.  I suspect that your fishes reaction is a result of disease or possibly you used Cupramine inappropriately. <Possibly> Here are some questions that may help us figure out what occurred: Where did you get the water for the quarantine tank? Was it freshly made salt water?  Did you check to make sure it matched pH, temperature, salinity, and that the ammonia and nitrite were at zero? <Good questions, concerns> Did you add any other chemical with the Cupramine?  Water conditioner, medication, ammonia remover. Did you have a UV sterilizer running? <This will remove the copper...> Did you do anything that could have stressed the Goby prior to being placed in the aquarium? Freshwater dip Are you sure that the fish has ich or velvet?  What you describe sounds like Brooklynella.  (rapid progression, string-like material hanging off the fish) <A valid concern. Copper compounds will not treat this protozoan complaint... but it is rare on Gobiids/oids> Please let me know the answers to these questions and I will help you the best I CAN. <A very nice response indeed> Best Regards, Seachem Tech Support"      Thank you for your time and help once again.   Kind regards   Claire <Thank you for sending this along. There is much to know/relate concerning copper's use... Not a simple, use so much of this, in such and such condition/s. Bob Fenner> Citron Goby ... feeding mostly   5/9/06 Hi Everybody, <Chris> Hi from the UK, guess what - I need your expertise! <Hotay!> On Friday I bought a Citron Goby, he was eating ok at the fish shop & looked fine, they had had this fish in the shop for 2-3 weeks prior to my buying him. Since then he has been in my new(ish) tank (established February this year) he hung about on the back wall and the front corner for Friday evening & most of Saturday (when a head of Acropora was added - first sizeable coral to be added (apart from the Xenia colony temporarily in there)) on Saturday night he hung about close to the Acro but on Sunday he was hiding behind the rockwork against the centre back overflow. <Unusual... you likely know this genus largely lives on, in, under Acropora tables, feeds on their polyps in the wild>   On Saturday he ate a little but since then has not eaten (trying with frozen brine & Mysis) also his breathing seems very rapid to me - up to about 100 x per minute (gill movements) & he seems to have become paler.  He now seems reluctant to move, allowing food to drift right past him with no attempt to feed. <Not unusual... stress from moving...> Tank specs are - 50gal 200 litre main tank - 24" cube, internal weir mud sump below with Chaeto (currently has carbon & PolyFilter in also) 5000 litres of water movement per hour 150w HQI MH Tunze nanodoc skimmer 3 to 4 litres evaporation per day replaced with saturated Kalkwasser through auto top off with Peri pump & floats (which indicates a high calcium demand to me bearing in mind the small load of calcifying organisms (list below & calcium slowly dropping unless supplemented with Tropic Marin BioCalcium) which confuses me a little, does this seem appropriate to you? <Mmm... well... seems high for what you list... But you're likely engaged in a/the self-defeating mix of alkalinity and biomineral... precipitation here... Please read: http://wetwebmedia.com/calcalkmar.htm and the linked files above> 30 kilos LR (Indonesian) 2 cleaner shrimp assorted cleanup crew 2 small plating Monti frags (large coin size) 1 small 1 1/2" Monti digitata frag 1 small 1" Acro frag & the new Acropora head mentioned above 3"-4" across Tests today - 1.025 sg Ammonia 0 Nitrite 0 Nitrate 0.2 Temp ranges 26.5deg c to 28deg c pH 7.95 ranging to 8.22 Alkalinity had dropped a little to 9dkh Calcium a little depressed at 370 Dissolved Oxygen at about 5mgl (initially tested about 3mgl but I retested & also tested my old tank for comparison which came out  at 6mgl) both these readings struck me as low (new tank & old tank) considering both have skimmer & lots of water movement - any thoughts? <Seven mg/l (or ppm) is likely about all to be expected, possible here... given temperature...> Background - About 3 weeks ago I added 2 Banggai Cardinals - one I found dead (intact) after 2 days (without warning) & the other disappeared completely without trace after 11 days with stringy white trailings from anus visible the day before (this fish wasn't over keen on food either but was eating & still in good shape when it died), <You don't mention the "Q" word... quarantine... You should be using such> corals and all other life remain in excellent health.  I am becoming very worried about the new Goby and am unsure of how to proceed, I have had great success with my old tank (with WWM help of course, sincere thanks to you all) & have my 2 clowns whom I don't want to risk in the new tank with this behavior & unexplained fish death.  I clearly don't want to risk this Goby either especially after the heartbreaking loss of first one then the second Banggai.  I have read I think most of the Goby FAQs and those others which seemed most relevant currently (recently) and a great many others in my year and a half of reefing.  So, what to do about my Goby? <Mmm, for one, read re the ping-pong issue re supplementing both alkalinity and biominerals... do this in new water for change-outs... consider cutting the "Kalk habit"... and the possibility of adding vitamins to live foods to entice the Gobiodon> Please do let me know if I can add further information at all & I look forward to your advice Cheers   Chris P.S If there is a footer on this email with my work details please delete before posting (sometime it shows up, others not) Many thanks. <Will do. Cheers, Bob Fenner, in not-so-sunny S. Cal.>

Goby With Urchin Spine Through Its Head! - 02/12/06 Hi, <<Hello>> We have just discovered that out new little goby (3 weeks in tank) has a spike through his head from our urchin (see photos). <<Yowza!  More than 30 years in this hobby...first time I've seen anything like that...>> He does not seem to be distressed and is feeding and swimming as normal. <<Hmm, must have not struck anything 'vital'.>> Since the photos he has banged his head around on a rock and taken both ends off - we can still see the spike inside.  Is there anything we should do or should we just observe? <<I would be inclined to leave things as they are.  If the spine has not killed the goby by now, catching/handling it to try to remove the spine will cause undo stress or even kill it outright. Many thanks
<<Regards, EricR>>

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