Care Level: Moderate
Reef Compatible: Yes
General Description: The Gold Head Sleeper Goby, also referred to as the Golden Head, Blue Band or Yellow-headed Sleeper Goby, has a wide distribution across the Australian Coral Sea, Fiji, and the Indo-Pacific. Its body is torpedo shaped with an overall pearly-white coloration, blue stripe on each side of its face and a yellow-gold head. A relatively peaceful fish, the Gold head sleeper goby is very popular for aerating and keeping the substrate clean, including managing nuisance cyanobacteria. It does this by taking mouthfuls of substrate and passing it through the gill plates, extracting microorganisms and other food. In turn, your aquarium’s sand bed will appear squeaky clean but at a cost. Small mounds of substrate throughout the aquarium will be noticeable where the Gold head sleeper goby has been and in some circumstances for larger individuals, areas of the aquarium’s substrate may be more dramatically re-aquascaped. It is not uncommon for your Gold head sleeper goby to also create a “hole” to retreat to suddenly if felt threatened and this is usually surrounded by a large mound of substrate. An adult Golden head sleeper goby can reach a size of approximately 6″. Note: Whenever possible, our Gold head sleeper gobies are sourced from more sustainable locations, such as Fiji.
Diet Requirements: In the wild Gold head sleeper gobies are primarily carnivorous, feeding on small organisms and other material from the substrate. A diet largely consisting of high quality frozen preparations is necessary to maintain optimal health, coloration, and immune function. Such foods can include, but are not limited to, brine shrimp, calanus, mysis shrimp and other carnivore mixes. We highly encourage soaking frozen foods in vitamin and fatty acid supplements. Multiple, small feedings per day rather than one large feeding will also create more of a natural environment for the Gold head sleeper goby as it would feed in the wild. Gold head sleeper gobies may accept high quality flake and sinking pellet foods. Live foods, such as brine shrimp or blackworms, are an engaging treat from time to time.
Care Requirements: An established minimum 55 gallon aquarium is ideal to house a small to medium sized Gold head sleeper goby. A tight fitting lid is needed because these gobies are known to jump out of aquariums. A Gold head sleeper goby will be indifferent to the amount of live rock in an aquarium, as an open sandbed is more important in order for it to sift and feed. This fish should not be put into a biologically unstable aquarium, as it is sensitive to ammonia and nitrite, and it would likely also perish from a lack of food as a result of an unestablished sandbed. Do not house a Gold head sleeper goby with overly aggressive and pugnacious tank-mates. Only one Gold head sleeper goby is recommended per aquarium unless they’re a confirmed male-female pair [which is difficult to discern]; this species is not compatible with other members of the Valenciennea genus. Gold head sleeper gobies may show territoriality in smaller aquariums to similarily shaped fish that hang out near the bottom (i.e., firefish, blennies, other gobies). A Gold head sleeper goby will feel most at home in a reef aquarium, posing no threat to corals. Small shrimp may be at risk with very large individuals. Recommended water conditions, 72-78° F, KH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, salinity 1.020-1.025.
Purchase Size: Small: 2″ or less; Medium: 2-1/4″ to 3″; Large: 3-1/4″ to 4-1/4″; XLarge: 4-1/2″ or larger.
Note: Your item may not look identical to the image provided due to variation within species. Purchase sizes are approximate.