Yellowhead Sleeper Goby – Valenciennea Strigata
Species name: Valenciennea Strigata
Common names: Yellowhead Sleeper Goby, Blueband goby
Family: Gobiidae (Gobies)
Order: Perciformes (perch-likes)
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Maximum length: 7.1 in.
Minimum tank size: 50 gallons
Hardiness: Medium to difficult
Aggressiveness: Peaceful but territorial of his burrow. Should not be housed with aggressive fishes such as aggressive angelfishes, dottybacks, groupers or triggerfishes.
Reef Compatibility: Excellent
Diet: Omnivore. It feeds by taking a mouthful of sand and sifting it through its gill rakers to extract small crustaceans, worms and algae. It’s diet should be supplement with various meaty and herbivorous food such as live and/or frozen brine shrimp, mysid shrimp and prepared food for herbivore, as well as filamentous algae. Feed 2 times a day depending on live food availability within the aquarium. They usually starve to death in aquarium if competition for food is to high. A refugium to keep up levels of live foods seems to help lot in captivity. It can also be a good idea to increase pod production by planting some easily pruned macro algae in the tank as well.
Yellowhead Sleeper Goby are found throughout the Western Pacific and Indian Oceans where they live at depth of 10 to 50 feet. They live in pairs and like to burrow in the sand, especially juveniles.
They are burrow dwellers, and will often seek protection under low overhanging rocks, in crevices, holes or actually burrow underneath rock to form a secure home. They usually do better when kept in pairs.
Its head is yellow-gold with a sapphire-blue stripe below the eyes, and the rest of the body is off-white. Male can be identified by their elongated second dorsal spine.
The ideal aquarium will have a temperature of 75ºF to 78ºF (22ºC to 27ºC) with a specific gravity between 1.02 and 1.025 and a pH of 8.3 to 8.4. A sandbed of at least two inches in depth with plenty of live rock to graze, macro algae and suitable hiding places and open areas to swim is a must. A refugium to keep up levels of live foods seems to help lot in captivity. Startled or continually harassed Sleeper Goby are known to jump from the aquarium so it is a good idea to keep a lid on their enclosures.
The Sleeper Goby will spawn successfully in an aquarium but rearing the fry can be difficult because they are very small.
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