Steinitz's Shrimpgoby (species: Amblyeleotris steinitzi) in Lizard Island Field Guide (Lizard Island Field Guide)
Amblyeleotris steinitzi
Steinitz's Shrimpgoby

©Rick Stuart-Smith: Amblyeleotris steinitzi, Lizard Island area

©Andy Lewis: Steinitz's Shrimpgoby at the entrance to its burrow

©Lyle Vail: Amblyeleotris steinitzi at Yonge Reef
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Order Perciformes
Family Gobiidae
Genus Amblyeleotris
Species Amblyeleotris steinitzi



Distinguishing features

A small, elongate whitish fish with a series of pale maroon vertical bars on the flanks. Usually seen at the entrance to the burrow it shares with an Alpheid shrimp.


  • Up to 13 cm (Standard length)

Depth range

  • Depth range data is not yet available.


Similar taxa


©Atlas of Living Australia: Australian distribution

Distribution and habitat preferences

Areas of sand in shallow lagoons, within 10-20m of the reef edge.

Found over sandy bottoms in sheltered lagoonal habitats.


Steinitz's Shrimpgoby is one of many goby species that have a mutualistic relationship with Alpheid shrimps. The shrimp helps mainatain the burrow and guards the goby's eggs, while the goby stands guard at the entrance, watching for predators and feeding on plankton and detritus. The shrimp keeps one of its antennae in constant contact with the goby, and the two communicate with a series of tactile signals. Gobies are fast growing fishes and most do not live for more than 1 year.

Web resources


  • Depczynski, M. and D.R. Bellwood (2003). The role of cryptobenthic reef fishes in coral reef trophodynamics, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 256: 183-191. LIRS catalog number 90050.
  • Hernaman, V. and P.L. Munday (2005). Life-history characteristics of coral reef gobies. I. Growth and life-span, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 290: 207-221. LIRS catalog number 90051.
  • Hernaman, V. and P.L. Munday (2005). Life-history characteristics of coral reef gobies. II. Mortality rate, mating system and timing of maturation, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 290: 223-237. LIRS catalog number 90052.
  • View all references