Mudskippers as pets






               Mudskippers spend over 90% of their time out of the water, so you must make sure the set up is sufficiently spacious . The best setup for mudskippers is a terrarium, or a vivarium, since there will be living animals in it. If a mudskippers is forced to remain in an all water tank it will probably die . If it is too cold, you will need a water heater as mudskippers become inactive in temperature under 50° F .water temp around 79°F to 90°F is ideal . A lid is required as mudskippers will hop out . Make sure there is enough room for the mudskippers as they are quite territorial, 10 5 gram mudskippers in a 15 ga tank. The dominant fish may need to be seperated. Mudskippers need an area where they can be elevated out of the water, a gradual slope is best. Mudskippers forced to live in a water only enviroment will drown.



 Tidal Mudflat Aquarium - mudskippers

 This is a tidal mudflat aquarium that I have designed to try and get my mudskipper pair to reproduce. As this species inhabits mudflats that are innundated 2 times a day, I have had to recreate this environment. The substrate is fine silty mud that has formed annoxic layers. The mudskippers (male) digs a "j" shaped burrow into the mud, carries air into the terminal end and then the pair lay their eggs within the air bubble. This video shows the tank going from "low tide" to "high tide



 Hand feeding a mudskipper


Mudskippers are brackish water fish and do well in water that have a gravity of 1.005 to 1.015. The water should not be hard and have not have less than 120 parts per million calcium carbonate . To make your mudskippers really feel at home consider planting mangrove seedlings . They should be grown in a small pot before being put in an aquarium. Mangroves grow slowly, don't plan on replanting it in your terrarium for at least 3 months . When the plant has grown a few leaves and has established roots it is ready to move. Make sun it gets plenty of sunlight .Use aquarium safe fertilizer for your mangroves .



Where to buy Mangrove seedlings and seeds



mangrove seedlings for sale on eBay



 book on growing mangroves




One habitat that can be made quickly is one that is half filled with water and sand or gravel with driftwood and rocks so mudskippers will have a place to climb .If you use mud as a substrate you can plant mangrove seedlings or other plants that grow in brackish water, with mud, mudskippers will dig burrows. you can provide artificial burrows with pipes .

To make your terrarium resemble a mudflat consider a tide control system which can be bought or you can make your own with two pumps, two timers and a sump .



video of mudskippers and a

baby snapping turtle


Mudskippers are very ammonia tolerant fish, partial water changes are needed if no filtration is used. remove 1/4 of the water and replace it, keeping the proper brackish level . An air pump can be used to maintain air pressure and pump out gases .

Mudskippers like live food such as brine shrimp, worms, mosquito larva, insects and small shrimp . They will also eat freeze dried shrimp and worms, dry fish food. Mudskippers can be feed every other day, overfeeding leads to health problems .

Mudskippers are aggresive torward other fish .Possible tankmates for mudskippers are knight gobies and sailfin mollies, which do well in the brackish water mudskippers like .


mudskipper hunting

Look for muskippers with fins spread out, that is a sign of health. Common parasites of mudskippers are protozoa in the gills and gall bladeer .

Periophthalmus barbarus

Periophthalmus argentilineatus

In Europe, most commonly sold mudskipper is the Periophthalmus barbarus, which grows to 4 to 8 inches and has blue dorsal fins . The Periophthalmus barbarus is sold in North America as well as the Periophthalmus argentilineatus which grows to 71/2 inces and have red and white dorsal fins .



video of a brackish tank setup

with puffers and mudskippers


where to buy mudskippers