By Bob Goemans
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Amblyeleotris wheeleri

(Polurin & Lubbock, 1977)

Gorgeous Prawn Goby

Likely Reef Tank Suitable

Likely Fish-Only Tank Suitable

Range: Indo-West Pacific Ocean: East Africa to Fiji, north to Southern Japan, and south to the Great Barrier Reef.

Size: 4 inches (10 cm)

Natural Environment: Inhabits sandy areas in rich coral areas and usually found at depths between 15 –130 feet (5 – 40 m) where it feeds on benthic invertebrates and zooplankton.

General Husbandry: Occasionally seen in the trade, and having a whitish body with several slanted brownish bands.

Best maintained in well-established fish-only or reef aquariums with wide-open course grained (2 – 4 mm) deep sandy areas along with some small rubble.

Should not be housed with aggressive or fin-nipping fishes, such as groupers, dottybacks, triggerfishes or angelfishes, as this is a shy species that prefers to live in a burrow with its head protruding while watching for its next meal to come close enough to dart outwards and capture.

As to diet, should there not be enough naturally found live food to consume, target feeding is necessary, and if so, should be fed a diet of finely chopped fresh or frozen meaty foods, e.g., krill, marine fish flesh, mysis shrimp, shrimp, scallops, squid, and clams and be fed twice daily. Even though basically a meat eater, some algae containing foods should be included in its diet and overall, should be fed twice daily.

Small sinking enriched shrimp pellets are also an excellent way of keeping them well fed.

If difficult to get feeding, try live adult fortified brine shrimp and black worms (Lumbriculus variegatus).


    Order: Perciformes

    Suborder: Gobioidei

    Family: Gobiidae

    Genus: Amblyeleotris

FYI: May jump out of uncovered aquariums.

In the wild, lives in burrows with Alpheus ochrostriatus.

One per aquarium unless a mated pair.

Experience Level: Beginner

Temperament: Peaceful

Diet: Carnivore

Coral Safe: Yes

Fish Safe: Yes

Invertebrate Safe: With caution

Acclimation Time: 30 minutes+

Aquarium Environment: Reef or fish-only aquarium

Tankmates: Peaceful

Minimum Tank Size: 30 gallons

Temperature Range: 72 - 82°F (22 – 27°C)

Specific Gravity: 1.020 - 1.026

pH: 8.0 - 8.5

 Amblyeleotris wheeleri (Gorgeous Prawn Goby)
Photo © John Randall
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