Mask Shrimpgoby, Amblyeleotris gymnocephala (Bleeker 1853)

Other Names: Masked Shrimp-goby, Nakedhead Shrimpgoby

A Mask Shrimpgoby, Amblyeleotris gymnocephala, at Karang Asem, Bali, Indonesia, August 2015. Source: Mark Rosenstein / License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike

A whitish to pale grey shrimpgoby with a short dark brown stripe from behind the eye to the upper edge of the gill cover, five broad diffuse brown bars on the side, with light and dark scribble markings on upper side between the bars. 
Mask Shrimpgobies share burrows with alpheid shrimps.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2017, Amblyeleotris gymnocephala in Fishes of Australia, accessed 03 Dec 2022,

Mask Shrimpgoby, Amblyeleotris gymnocephala (Bleeker 1853)

More Info


Monte Bello Islands, Western Australia, to North Oxley Island, Northern Territory, and the northern part of the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland. Elsewhere the species occurs in the tropical, east-Indo-west Pacific. Inhabits sandy/rubble areas on coastal and inshore reefs, sharing burrows with alpheid shrimps.


Dorsal fin VI + I, 7-9; Anal fin I, 18-20; Pectoral fin 19-20; Longitudinal scale series 120-130.
Greatest body depth 6.3-7.0 in SL; pelvic fins united by membrane at base of fifth soft ray; no median predorsal scales; caudal fin lanceolate, about twice head length.


Whitish to pale grey color; dark brown stripe from behind the eye to upper edge of gill cover; five wide , diffused brown bars on side; brown scribbling on upper half of body between bars. 


The specific name gymnocephalus is from the Greek gymnos, meaning 'naked', and kephalos, meaning 'head'.

Species Citation

Gobius gymnocephalus Bleeker 185, Natuurkundig Tijdschrift voor Nederlandsch Indië 4: 473. Type locality: Jakarta (as Batavia), Indonesia.


Bray, D.J. 2017


Australian Faunal Directory

Mask Shrimpgoby, Amblyeleotris gymnocephala (Bleeker 1853)


Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp. 

Bleeker, P. 1853. Diagnostische beschrijvingen van nieuwe of weinig bekende vischsoorten van Batavia. Tiental I–VI. Natuurkundig Tijdschrift voor Nederlandsch Indië 4: 451-516 

Hoese, D.F. & Steene, R. 1978. Amblyeleotris randalli, a new species of gobiid fish living in association with alphaeid shrimps. Records of the Western Australian Museum 6(4): 379-389 figs 1-3 

Hutchins, B. 2004. Fishes of the Dampier Archipelago, Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 66: 343–398 

Kuiter, R.H. 1992. Tropical Reef-Fishes of the Western Pacific, Indonesia and Adjacent Waters. Jakarta : PT Gramedia Pustaka Utama 314 pp. pls. 

Kuiter, R.H. & Tonozuka, T. 2001. Pictorial guide to Indonesian reef fishes. Part 3. Jawfishes - Sunfishes, Opistognathidae - Molidae. Melbourne : Zoonetics pp. 623–893.

Larson, H.K., Williams, R.S. & Hammer, M.P. 2013. An annotated checklist of the fishes of the Northern Territory, Australia. Zootaxa 3696(1): 1-293 

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37428037

Behaviour:Shares burrows with alpheid shrimps

Depth:5-35 m

Habitat:Reef associated, sand/rubble areas

Max Size:10 cm TL

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Species Maps

CAAB distribution map