Re: [RML] Sexing desert gobies

Barry Meiklejohn (barrym at
Sat, 9 Aug 1997 08:31:14 +1000


Excellent response - I agree with all and you have put it much more
eloquently than I. By the way I find my gobies will run and hide at first
as well. I find them to be exceptionally curious and if I sit in front of
the tank they will all eventually come back out and see what the large blob
outside is (me).

Bruce says its 'cause I don't feed them and they are pleading for some food

They are such an amusing little fish struggling up to the surface sinking
down again and then that little hopping thing they do to get around. And
when you see a full coloured Coward Springs male in his golden rainment,
with that peacock blue dorsal and the contrast in the black and white as
you've described - what a sight to behold. I wish I could sit an watch them
all day. One day I am going to get to Coward Springs and I will watch them
in there true habitat.


-----Original Message-----
From: rhondawi at <rhondawi at>
To: rainbowfish at <rainbowfish at>
Date: Saturday, 9 August 1997 2:52
Subject: Re: [RML] Sexing desert gobies

>I have them also and they never seem to want to sit at the front glass
>sideways so I can tell. :) Fortunatly they should display different
>coloration especially in the dorsals. The male dorsals should be a dark
>blackish blue color with the front most dorsal having a yellow stripe at
>top and the rear most dorsal having a white stripe at the top. The female
>may have a tiny bit of coloring on the dorsal but it shouldn't be nearly as
>bright and usually only a spot of it.
>I've also noticed in a tank full of males and females that the lower
>males will not be quite as colorful as the higher ranking males, and in my
>observation as the male reaches full maturity they don't seem to be as
>mottled in the body color as the female. To me they seem more of a solid
>color where the female stays very mottled.
>I never really looked to see if there was any differance in head size as
>coloration pretty much gives them away. I notice teh females, as with many
>fish, tend to be a little more plump too.
>Hope this helps,
>On Fri, 08 Aug 1997, jgrylls at (John Grylls) wrote:
>>Hello all,
>>I have recently purchased a nominal pair of Coward Springs desert
>>gobies, the "male" is about 40-45 mm in length, and the "female" is
>>5-10 mm shorter. They quite are similar in appearance and behaviour,
>>sparring and displaying on occasions.. The larger fish has a slightly
>>more yellow head, and I think that I can convince myself that his head
>>is flatter and proportionately larger, but there is not much in it.
>>Their differences could be explained by sex, but I suspect it could
>>also be explained by differing levels of maturity. Neither fish is
>>sufficiently mature for genital papilla differences to be apparent.
>>Any opinions would be greatly appreciated.
>>John Grylls
>American Livebearer Association
>Pets Forum Group Inc.