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Gobies / Blennies / Basslets


In their natural environment, gobies can be found in rocky areas and on the sandy bottom. While delicate in appearance, they are fairly hardy fish and general do well in captivity. Some species are loners, but other species are often found in pairs or small groups. Because they are generally shy fish, gobies should not be kept in the same tank as aggressive fish that may continually cause them stress. Some common goby species include the fire goby, the yellow goby, and the purple fire goby.


In the wild, blennies are found in shallow waters near coastal areas in all tropical seas. They are fairly small fish, growing to a maximum length of about 4 inches. Because they do not always have the brilliant coloring of other marine species, blennies are sometimes overlooked by saltwater enthusiasts, but these funny fish actually have something of a "personality" and are interesting little fish. For instance, some species of blennies have special sensory feelers located on the top of their head, which may help them detect the presence of a predator. Also, if they become stressed, some species can produce an unpleasant layer of slime to cover their bodies and scare away potential assailants. Two of the more popular species of blennies are the golden blenny and the bicolor blenny.


The small, rainbow-colored basslets are popular choices for marine aquariums. In the wild, basslets are split into two distinct groups, one located in the Atlantic, and the other located in the Pacific. The Royal Gramma is probably the best known from the Atlantic group and is a tolerant fish with a distinguishing dark spot on its dorsal fin. Some of the best known species from the Pacific group include the skunk basslet, the purple basslet, and the bicolor basslet. Basslets are hardy fish and usually do fairly well in the aquarium.