Peppermint Goby Identification

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The peppermint goby is a small, cleaning goby that will often be seen perched on top of a coral head. Look for the yellow-colored peppermint goby and its blue snout with help from a scuba diving instructor in this free video on fish identification and marine life.

Part of the Video Series: Caribbean Fish
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Video Transcript

The marine organism we are going to identify now is the Peppermint Goby. The Peppermint Goby is one of the small cleaning Gobies that one will often see perched on the top of a coral head. It's one of the easiest to identify. Since unlike many of it's brethren it's not black with light colored stripes. The Peppermint Goby is a bright yellow gold color and if you look closely you'll see a brilliant blue wash over it's snout. In addition some may have red or greenish markings behind their eye and on the front part of their bodies. Their bodies are translucent, they range in size from a quarter on an inch to an inch and a quarter so they are very tiny fish. Peppermint Gobies are found in all parts of the tropical waters of Florida, the Bahamas and the Caribbean. But they are relative abundance varies from location to location. When you find one, it will usually be by itself on a coral head without other Peppermint Gobies around. However it may occupy the same coral head as other cleaner Gobies such as the Shark nosed and Cleaning Gobies. Both of which are black with white, blue or yellow stripes running along the sides of their bodies. Peppermint Gobies can be seen on coral heads in the depth range of forty to a hundred and thirty feet. Peppermint Gobies feed on the external parasites that are found on other fish. Larger fish will swim over the coral head where the Gobies lives and hover motionlessly while the Peppermint Gobies swims over the larger fish's body picking off the parasites. Some fish such as Crail Rasses will assume a head down position while on a cleaning station, while others such as the Barge Neck and Barracuda will darken considerably while being cleaned. Peppermint Gobies are protogynous hermaphrodites, this means that all fish start out life as females and turn into males as they mature. Eggs are fertilized externally by the males after the females have laid them in a nest they create near their coral head residence. The Peppermint Gobies then protect the nest from predators until the eggs hatch. That's the Peppermint Goby.


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