|Synonyms||Gobius doriae, Hypogymnogobius doriae|
|Distribution||Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia (Sarawak), and Vietnam.|
|Sexual Dimorphism||In mature fish, the males are usually more colourful (the yellow bars taking on an orange/red colouration when in breeding condition) with the females tending to be fuller bodied.|
|Maximum Size||4.2cm (1.7")|
|Temperature||22-28 deg C (72-82 deg F)|
|Water Parameters||Freshwater or brackish. Hard & alkaline. pH: 7.2-8.5, dH: 12-25 degrees.|
|Compatibility||Species-only aquarium; Specialist community.|
|Lighting||No special requirements|
The diminutive Bumblebee Goby is known from a variety of different lowland coastal habitats - both freshwater and brackish - including estuaries, mangrove swamps, streams, and tidal creeks. Here, the substrate consists of mud, silt, or sand, and is strewn with scattered pieces of driftwood, mangrove roots, shells, water worn rocks, and decaying plant matter. The aquarium should be mature and furnished with a soft sand substrate, ideally fine coral sand which will help to keep the water hard and alkaline. Create plenty of hiding places using smooth rocks/cobbles, large shells, tangles of driftwood, and dense clumps of hardy vegetation. Species such as Anubias and Vallisneria will cope well with harder water. Filtration should be efficient, but water movement fairly gentle. Small, frequent water changes will help keep nitrate to a minimum, particularly important as this species is especially sensitive to deteriorating water conditions. Bumblebee Gobies can be rather quarrelsome with one another, so it is always best to keep a large sized group (8 or more) so that any territorial behaviour is spread evenly throughout the group, with no single fish bearing the continual brunt of it. Smaller groups do not often fare as well. Ensure there are plenty of caves and crevices (visual barriers) in order for these fish to form their territories. If there aren’t enough territories per fish, the males in particular will become rather aggressive with one another; as a guide, at least two or three hiding places per fish should be provided. Bumblebee Gobies are best maintained in a species-only set-up, but in more voluminous aquaria, they have been successfully kept alongside species such as Glassfish and various livebearers that are large enough not to be considered food, and which tend to occupy the upper levels of the water column. If maintaining these fish under brackish conditions, be sure to use a quality marine salt for water changes, and monitor salinity carefully with a hydrometer.
Small meaty frozen foods such as mosquito larvae, daphnia, vitamin-enriched brineshrimp, and chopped Mysis shrimp. Unlikely to take dried foods.
The Bumblebee Goby is a cave spawner, and has been bred in the home aquarium. A male will choose a suitable spawning site, such as a cave, flower pot, pipe, or shell, and will display to passing females. If a female is receptive, 150-200 eggs will be deposited/fertilised inside the cave, after which time the female leaves and the male is left to guard the clutch. The eggs should hatch within 4-7 days (temperature dependent), and once free-swimming, the fry will require baby brineshrimp (Artemia nauplii). The young initially swim in the upper levels of the water before settling to the substrate, in typical goby-like fashion, after a few weeks.