Peacock Goby
Alternative Name(s): Peacock Gudgeon, Eye-spot Sleeper
Scientific Name(s): Tateurndina ocellicauda
Category: Tropical
Maximum Size: 7cms
Minimum Tank Volume: 60 litres
Minimum Tank Size: 24 x 12 x 12 for 1 pair
Water Temperature Range: 22-26°C
Water pH Range: 6.5-7.5
Water Hardness Range: 5-10 dGH

General Information: These are small freshwater gobies from Papua New Guinea and Australia. They are light blue with red stripes, yellow fins and a distinctive black eye-spot near their tail. I had been told they are shy but found the opposite to be true - they are curious and will take an interest in whatever is happening, especially if it involves food! They should be kept in pairs. They will swim at all levels of the aquarium unlike most gobies who stick to the bottom.
Tank Requirements: Prefers soft acidic water and a dark substrate with heavy planting and floating plants for cover. Keep tank securely covered as they can and do jump.
Diet Requirements: Insectivorous. A bit picky, I have not found any flake food they will take. Live and frozen foods are preferred, freeze dried bloodworms are grudgingly accepted!
Compatibility: This fish is generally peaceful although the males can become slightly aggressive when spawning and will defend the eggs from other fish. Keep with similar sized peaceful fish.
Recommendations: They like very clean water, so no slacking on the water changes! The male tends to harass the female slightly so plenty of hiding spaces should be provided.
Common Problems: Feeding can be a problem but as long as you have a supply of live and frozen food it should be OK. Do not keep with apple snails as they have a tendency to attack their tentacles.
Similar Species: These fish are from the sleeper goby family. Other sleeper gobies in the aquatic trade are Morgunda morgunda and Oxyeleotris marmoratus although these are much much larger than the Peacock Goby.
Sexing: Very easy, the male has a rounded head whereas the female is slightly smaller, more streamlined and has a yellow patch on her belly when ready for breeding.
Breeding: These are cave spawners so provide lots of small spaces. Spawning usually takes around a day and the male will guard and fan the eggs until they hatch (about 6-7 days). Fry are quite slow growing.
Author(s): Fishy-Fishy, Fishlady | Photo: | Views: 64026
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  • Just popping in

 A Wonderful Community Fish

I found the Peacock Gudgeon in a petstore being clearance for $5.00. The store was unable to tell me much about the species and so I did a bit of online research on my own.

The majority of the species is sold in-store between 1 to 1 1/2 inches, however the fish actually gets a maximum of 2 1/2 inches. They are very beautiful and the adults have an amazing array of colour. I recommend searching for an adult photo if your interested in purchasing to get a feel for what they will really look like.

A peaceful fish, my female was only an inch when I got her and so I've been keeping her in my 10 gallon with Zebra Danios, but will be moving her to the 20 gallon when I get more. They get along very well, even schooling together once in awhile and during feeding sessions. I have heard conflicting reports about what to feed the species, however I have had no problems getting her to accept flake food - though I recommend getting one with a high protien percentage.

They are not overly picky about the water's properties and are relatively easy to care for. They can be hard to find and most I've found run between $9.95 to $14.99. I've actually had to special order more through a local aquarium store since she was the last one when I got her.

Personality wise they are peaceful and generally get along well with eachother and other community fish. The only time I had trouble was when she started fin nipping on my Butterfly Loach (aka Borneo Suckers) and then only when he wasn't moving.

Mine swims at most levels, though is most comfortable near the bottom and cover. She tends to hunt food here, however this may also be because I have only one and she is nerveous and my danios are very active in the top/middle parts of the tank.


  • Just popping in

 peacock gobies-the perfect fish?

I have two of these in my 55 gallon glass with 2 red whiptail cats, four glowlight tetras, a pair of swordtails, and a blue dwarf gourami, along with two ciclids. They are probably my favorites, next to the red cats.

Mine are very gentle and should be fed with an eyedropper, as the others are pigs, and tend to grab all the food. I feed the cats with a feeder also, as they're always hanging on the uptake for the filter, and would starve if I didn't feed them separate. As it is, the others have figured out there might be food on the intake, so I have to hang out and make sure they eat.

When I got them, they wanted to eat tiny specks, but are now up to live or frozen brine shrimp, frozen glass worms, flake, freeze-dried krill and even seaweed sheets I clip to the glass or stick to the filter where the cats are. It stays intact for hours (please remove after a few) and keeps the fish "regular" in terms of digestion and pooping.

Please note that if you have a pair of swordtails that you will VERY likely end up with baby fish fry if you feed live food, so aim the frozen stuff at them to prevent this. The swords also like sinking flakes, and are easily distracted.

Fry are NOT good food for your fish. They carry bacteria, and of course, aren't good for the fry.

  • Just popping in

 Peacock Gudgeon - a beautiful little fish

I have 1 male and 2 females in my modified fluval edge 23l. They breed continuously, each female spawning on rotation with the male. I drilled a 40mm hole in a short section of boxwood to make a cave and thats where the male sits, guarding the eggs. I feed the frozen bloodworm mixed with micro pellet and crushed algae Tabs. They go for the bloodworm mainly but will eat the other bits too. They also hunt the micro fauna in the tank. They are kept with a mixed bag of neocardina (blues, yellows), amano shrimp, x6 pygmy corys, x1 neon goby, x1 otocinclus. I did have pure red neocardina but the colour similarity to bloodworm meant they were a target. The adults offspring are not pure red as they have translucent areas and have been left alone. They are a completely fascinating fish. The way they move about is similar in many ways to a marine fish I used to have - marine beta or Calloplesiops altivelis. The females squabble and the male sees them off from the mouth of the cave but never any injuries. They're totally peaceful with their tankmates too (except the red neocardina of course) If you're looking for a small fish with lots of personality and some of the best colouration I've seen on any tropical fish then this one is for you. I'd recommend keeping them in a tank with similar sized fish as they don't grow very large and would likely end up hiding and you'd not see how beautiful they are. Mine come up to the top glass of the fluval edge and watch me prepare their food like little puppies and will even take food from my fingers. If you want to breed them you'll need to remove the eggs into a separate tank with flow moving over them or an egg tumbler as when they hatch the fry are incredibly small...I mean incredibly small. As small as a baby neocardina shrimp, if not smaller. They just look like an eyeball the size of a pin head with a whisker sticking out of it. I have no idea what you could feed them as I'm not breeding to raise fry...

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