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Dragon Goby Care & Facts (Gobioides Broussonnetii)

Dragon Goby

Dragon Goby

The impressively-named Dragon Goby is not a fish of legend but is in fact a great pick for your brackish tank. It has many different names, and you may come across them at your local aquarium or fish keeping centre under the title of a Violet Goby. This is a fish that is long, thin, and is likely to add a touch of class to any brackish tank.

This is a truly prehistoric fish, too – it’s been around for millennia! If you are thinking of introducing Dragon Goby to your own tank, keep reading our guide below and we will fill you in on all the stats and tips you’ll need to get started.

  • Fish Lifespan: Varies
  • Tank Size: At Least 50 Gallons
  • Water Temperature: Between 72F and 82F
  • pH: Between 7.5 and 8.0
  • Hardness: Between 10 and 20 dKH
  • Compatibility: Compatible with Guppies, Mollies and Swordfish
  • Fish Size: Up to 13 Inches

How do you take care of Dragon Gobies?

The Dragon Goby is a fish that some assume to be fairly difficult to look after, but that all really depends on your own level of experience as a fish keeper. As a brackish fish, the Dragon Goby is going to need very specific care when it comes to food, water levels and more. The Dragon Goby is, in itself, a fairly placid creature, but if you have never managed a brackish tank of your own before, then you may need to keep on your toes.

The Dragon Goby has origins in Central American waters, which means you are going to need to keep the water temperature fairly high. As you can see from our key statistics on this fish, there is a nice wide range you can offer to the Dragon Goby, but then you are also going to need to keep your water well filtered, as well as at a very specific pH level. The same goes for many, many different fish – but with something brackish and timid like the Dragon Goby, you’re going to need to take extra special care.

The best thing to do for your Dragon Goby is to set up substrate conditions where you mix gravel in with aragonite. This should help to keep your water nice and hard and within the right pH levels for the fish.

These critters are quite hard to breed as it’s not easy to tell one gender of Dragon Goby apart from the other. That said, if you are lucky enough to produce more Gobies, you can expect them to propagate fairly broadly.

The Dragon Goby is an omnivore, which means it will likely eat just about everything. However, this also means that you need to give it a fair mix of different types of food, meaning that you should look for live food, vegetation and frozen morsels. It’s always a good idea to try and keep the Dragon Goby away from smaller fish, as if it sees an opportunity, it will more than likely seize upon it. There’s no reason for you to ever take that chance!

Is Dragon Goby aggressive?

The Dragon Goby is not as aggressive as some fish keepers let on. The Dragon Goby sometimes suffers from poor eyesight, which means that it can be perceived as unnecessarily cranky. However, the Dragon Goby, much like other Gobies you’ll come across, are very well-mannered and are actually pretty timid.

That’s why it is a very good idea to arrange a big tank for the Dragon Goby to find its own space in, as well as all kinds of rocks and shrubbery. The Dragon Goby loves to hide and swim into caves and nooks, meaning that providing you offer it plenty of spots where it can cool down and chill out, you’ll likely have a placid, happy critter on your hands.

How big do Dragon Gobies get?

Dragon Goby are seriously long. They can grow up to more than a foot in length! Some fish keepers even say they have seen the odd Dragon Goby grow to twice this length in captivity.

File:Gobioides broussonnetii.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

However, you will normally need to buy these beasts at around half the normal size. It is never a good idea to assume that the Dragon Goby you buy is going to stay that length forever! That’s why it is always prudent to invest in a big tank. We’ve recommended around 50 gallons in size for this guide, but in all honesty, you should look for as big a tank as you can muster.

As you can imagine, there are going to be plenty of smaller fish that the Dragon Goby is going to want to feast on. Therefore, do always be very careful – if you want to house Dragon Goby on their own in a private tank, there is certainly no harm in doing so.

Can Dragon Goby live in freshwater?

Yes, some Dragon Goby are found in freshwater. This is one of several fish that has the amazing ability to thrive in several different water conditions. Of course, for this guide, we are looking at life for the Dragon Goby in brackish tanks. However, this is a critter that is impressively adaptable.

If you’re keen to look at a freshwater tank rather than a brackish tank, definitely consider the different fish we have examined in our guides to the coolest freshwater species, too. As always, keep in mind that fish like the Dragon Goby won’t mix well with everyone. There’s more information on this side of things a bit further down.

Do Dragon Gobies need brackish water?

Not always. As mentioned, the Dragon Goby can easily live in freshwater as well as brackish water. That said, for the purpose of this guide, we are considering the brackish element.

Some studies may suggest that brackish water is better for the Dragon Goby, but it is always a prudent idea to look into various different sources. Do also ask your local fish keeper and aquarium expert for more details.

If you are moving from freshwater fish keeping to a brackish tank, then a Dragon Goby is likely to be a fantastic first choice. However, do keep in mind that these beasts can get very large indeed – and that keeping any fish in brackish water takes a lot of time, effort and consideration!

How much does a Dragon fish costs?

The cost of Dragon Gobies will vary depending on when and where you buy them. They can be fairly rare, but online you can expect to purchase a small clutch of Dragon Goby for as little as £12.

However, you’re going to need to consider long term costs, too, if you want to give your Dragon Goby the best possible start in your tank. This includes making sure you have the best size of tank to begin with, an adequate water filtration system and more.

Dragon goby | Gobioides brousonnetti | ictheostega | Flickr

Therefore, the cost of keeping a Dragon Goby will soon add up over time. If you already have a brackish tank and have experience of running this type of aquarium in your home, then you will likely have little to worry about – you may already know what to expect in terms of cost.

Fish keeping is a hobby which can be affordable but do remember to always invest in the best possible equipment for your money. After all, it is hardly fair on your fish if you choose cheap tanks and filters and they end up being a poor choice for their needs!

Are Dragon or Violet Goby good community fish?

Dragon Gobies can make good community fish, though their aggression can vary. Again, this all really depends on how many other fish you have in a tank with them, and whether or not they feel threatened.

You also need to keep in mind that not only is the Dragon Goby carnivorous, it’s also likely to be much bigger than many other brackish fish in your tank. This means your community may be at risk of becoming dinner for the Dragon Goby when they least suspect it. It’s always a good idea to keep your eyes open.

The Dragon Goby is fairly well mannered which means they shouldn’t cause too much of a tussle. However, if you are concerned, it is likely a good idea to make sure they have their own tank. The last thing you’re going to want is a brackish newcomer who ends up dividing the community!

The Dragon Goby should do well with Mollies and Guppies, though they are going to need to be the same size. It’s best to try and see how big your Dragon Goby is at full size!

Should I get Dragon Goby?

The Dragon Goby is a wonderful fish to keep in a brackish tank. This is largely thanks to their size and their colourings, but they also have a mild temperament.

However, as always, keep an eye on the community. The Dragon Goby is likely to scoop up smaller fish for supper, so be on your guard.

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