Empire Gudgeon (Hypseleotris compressa)

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Empire Gudgeon

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Empire Gudgeon

Hypseleotris compressa

114 Litres (30 US G.)

10-12 cm (3.9-4.7")


1 - 1.013


6 - 8

10 -30 °C (50-86°F)

5-20 °d

1:1 M:F

Pellet Foods
Flake Foods
Live Foods

5-8 years



Additional names

Empire Gudgeon, Australian-Carp Gudgeon, Australian Empire Gudgeon

Additional scientific names

Eleotris compressus

Native Range[edit]

Native to a wide swath of eastern Australia near the coast, as well as southern new guinea. Found in a wide range of conditions in the wild.


Not an aggressive species and can be kept with most fishes that cannot fit in its mouth, though mixing it with other territorial bottom dwellers could be problematic. Males are territorial and should be outnumbered by females.


Not a challenging fish to feed, the empire gudgeon is a carnivore and will eat any meaty foods provided, from flakes to small fish and shrimp.

Tank setup[edit]

Again, not a difficult species to accommodate assuming the tank is large enough. This species is territorial and benefits from having a decent amount of cover to mark territory lines and to get out of each other's sight. Powerful jumpers; need a secure lid. They come from a wide range of climate zones and water conditions in the wild; they do not need heaters in many homes and typically do well in neutral or alkaline water, though they can be adjusted to brackish conditions (which may make reproduction easier; see below).


Males have brightly colored red fins and are larger than the brown females. When in spawning condition, the male's body also turns bright red and their heads become larger. Unlike virtually everything else about this species, reproducing these fishes is very difficult; while they spawn readily enough, the eggs are extremely small - about 320 microns in diameter - and hatch in about 10 hours into equally minute fry that are subsequently swept downstream to brackish estuaries, where they develop. Fry require brackish or marine conditions to grow in aquariums; they are so small (1 mm long!) that even infusoria is not accepted by these fry when they become free swimming, though flagellated algae species may be small enough to be eaten at this early stage. This species is rarely captive bred as a result of these difficulties, though it has occasionally been achieved by accident in outdoor brackish ponds intended for shrimp aquaculture.


Very hardy fish as an adult and a good beginner's oddball fish, but the difficulties involved in propagating it means the empire gudgeon is not an ideal spawning project for most hobbyists.



External links[edit]