View Full Version : Dwarf Golden Moray

08/31/2005, 12:32 AM
Hello, I currently work at a fish store and we've had this dwarf moray in for about 3 weeks now. Im thinking of settin myself a reef tank and takin him home(150 for him). Would a 20 gallon be adequet for this moray. I plan to have a dsb, figi live rock, bac-pac hang on skimmer, aquaclear 300 mechanical filter, Prolly some pc's for lighting. Now, will this moray bother any corals that i plan to get.. or clams? Will this creature be suitable for a reef tank. I only plan to have him and maybe 2 more small fish, maybe 3 TOPS such as black clowns and a blue tank. Thanks for any help, and if any of you guys have a pic of a GDM in a reef tank, that would be great.


08/31/2005, 12:35 AM
I'd say a 40 gallon minimum, especially if it's reef for the sake of clean water. They're small for an eel, but they arent that small for a fish, and a heavy waste fish at that ;) . Also, did you mean to say blue tang when you said blue tank? I'm not the tang police or anything, but if you were meaning a blue tang, a 20 gallon is far too small, even for a tiny one..

08/31/2005, 12:48 AM
OK, well as far as my filtration setup, would that be alright? My co-worker is going to give me his old 20 gallon which has like no scratches at all.... so i want to use it lol. So they really do poop alot? If i just had a fish only tank or maybe very little coral for the time being for this eel, would the 20 suffice? do you have anymore pix of ur moray in ur tank bsides the ones u posted in other threads? thanks again!

08/31/2005, 07:40 AM
It shouldn't bother any corals or clams, but it might munch some shrimp. After seeing the one at a LFS here I think you could keepit inthe 20, but I thinkit should be the only fish if you want some corals.
The water quality issue is a little of, they can be messy eaters from tearing food items into edible pieces, and a little of them processing more food than a normal "reef fish" and pooping more. Size wise I think you could probably gt away with the fish in a 24x12 aquarium, but their will be a faster degridation in the water quality from the limited quantity of water. So if you do put it in with corals you will need to do weekly water changes.
Filtration wise I think I would recommend an AquaC remora over the Back Pak if you are getting the moray, otherwise I think you will be fine. Personally I might get the AC50 and do one side as a LR filter and the other as a mini Fuge.
As long as the fish are comfortable and not crowded, and you are willing to do frequent water changes you can keep both corals and high poluters. Just don't fall behind on WC's or your tank will pay.

08/31/2005, 07:44 AM
My Tagalong question is
How much trouble do you think a DGM would pose for a Pistol Shrimp?
Of all 4 of my shrimp, that is the one I figure would be first to get munched and is the only one I would really not be happy to lose. He pops his claw every night 1 minute after lights out, kind of like he is telling everyone Good Night.

08/31/2005, 08:10 AM
At the end of the first week my GDM ate my pair of pistol shrimp.. It was pretty sad because those guys were even breeding and I had them for a long time, but I wasnt sad enough to be mad at the eel. I was more happy he was finally eating. Btw, he hasnt touched the coral banded shrimp.

If you keep him, keep him alone and with corals that can take higher nutrients. Mushrooms, polyps, propably leathers, etc. He is a bit of a messy eater, but when kept with other fish, they'll just eat every thing that floats off. In your tank, without other fish, you'll have to rely on larger weekly water changes (maybe like 5 gallons a week or so for a 25% change, shouldnt be hard) and possibly a coral banded shrimp if you want.

Here's another picture. It's not new and it's not that great, but I havent posted it yet. Even so, I'll try to get some new ones tonight.


08/31/2005, 02:39 PM
Man, thanks for your help guys. Even my friend told me i should get a bigger tank maybe a 30.. my friend works for kirtter products and he can build me a custom one b/c i wanna use my 3 foot retrofit pc's that have been sitting in my garage for like a year lol, .. but we'll see how things go. Id really appreciate any more pics of your moray and now im really stoked to get everything together! THanks everyone for your support and if you guys have anymore suggestions for me, feel free to post away.


08/31/2005, 08:57 PM
Originally posted by slayer_zeus
Even my friend told me i should get a bigger tank maybe a 30..

I would agree with your friend, when you think about it, the tank is much smaller investment than the eel. I might even suggest using the 20 as the sump, that would increase you total water volume, but it would up your costs because of the pump.

If your planning on purchasing a tank that is 36" you could look at a 40 breeder, I believe they are 36 x 13 x 20.

By they way I am looking for a pair of dwarf golden eels, but I cannot find them around here. The sad part is every shop I've talked to has no idea what I am talking about. I have 2 to try tomorrow.

08/31/2005, 09:22 PM
Good luck on your search, ajm-vfr. Would be awesome to have a pair.

slayer_zeus, I highly suggest the larger tank. A 40 breeder would be great, as suggested :).

New pictures from today:

This one murdered his color, but it shows more of his body.

Here's another

And I think a lot of pictures of these guys are very misleading, especially like the one I posted earlier. It makes their heads look so fat, but they're so small and thin...

08/31/2005, 10:14 PM

Those are wonderful pictures.

How are these guys for being escape artists? I saw Dr. Frank Marini talk over the weekend, and he talked briefly about these guys. I asked him if they liked to escape like most other eels, and he said that he did not feel that was an issue. He said something to the effect that they do not really leave the rock work. What is your experience?

I've read that even those these guys are not pebble teeth, they are too small to be a risk to most reef fish. What is the smallest fish you have in the tank?


08/31/2005, 10:31 PM
I see my eel swim in full view several times a day. He's usually in the cave where you see him in all the pictures I've posted, but he also likes a cave on the other side of the tank (harder to get a good picture over there). Thing is, the middle of the tank is an arch so he doesnt always go through the rockwork above, but swims along the lower back instead.

So he does leave the rockwork completely several times a day, but not to escape. Still, I dont really think I'd be totally comfortable spending so much and risk it jumping (especially the price for a pair you're looking for!). Also, if he's really hungry he'll sometimes go crazy, coming all the way out and attacking anything from a snail (no way he could actually eat one) to passing fish during feeding time. If he's going to jump, I think it would be when he's hungry (not that he could, every single inch is covered). Btw, he lets go of the fish right away. All the ones he's grabbed so far have been too big to eat. I think he might have gotten a bite in my radiant wrasse as he had a couple missing scales and underneath them he looked hurt. No biggy though, just two small scales and he's completely fine now.

The smallest fish with him is a 1.5" sixline wrasse which has not yet been eaten... unfortunately... :rolleyes: . The second smallest fish that I actually trust with him is about a 2" male percula. I dont think he could be eaten. The eel's head is pretty small, and even the food I feed him has to be fairly small.

09/01/2005, 01:37 AM
Thatnks for the information, think I will have to pass untill I get a tank set up to put my pistol in. :(

09/01/2005, 06:59 PM
get some xenia for your tank. will take over with high nutrients. looks good too.

09/01/2005, 08:33 PM
i have been looking for a golden dwarf for a long time. anyone know were i can buy one?

09/01/2005, 09:10 PM

If you cant get one locally, there's a few places online that has 'em usually. Here's two good sites.

www.marineaquatics.net is where I got mine (they arent in the catalog, check the "new arrivals" at the top of the page).

www.themarinecenter.com gets them sometimes too. I've heard nothing but good things from them, but I hear they can be quite pricy over there. Still, I've only heard positive things about them.

09/01/2005, 09:26 PM
Originally posted by LukFox

If you cant get one locally, there's a few places online that has 'em usually. Here's two good sites.

www.marineaquatics.net is where I got mine (they arent in the catalog, check the "new arrivals" at the top of the page).

www.themarinecenter.com gets them sometimes too. I've heard nothing but good things from them, but I hear they can be quite pricy over there. Still, I've only heard positive things about them.

The marine center has a eel called a "Gold Spot Snake Eel" Is that the same thing. The name game has to be the most frustrating part of this hobby.

Marine aquatics has one called a "Hawaiin Dwarf Eel" The collong looks close, but the pic is not the greatest.

09/01/2005, 09:40 PM
Here's the link to the one at the Marine Center:

The Hawaiian dwarf eel is what I ordered from Marine Aquatics, and I got the right eel.

09/01/2005, 10:04 PM
Thanks for the info.

I'm probably going to go with marine aquatics. As soon as I get the fish in quarenteen into the tank I will order a pair.

Is your trained to take food of a stick, or do you just dump food in?

Thanks again.

09/01/2005, 10:21 PM
He only takes it from a stick, and right now he's going through a phase where he will only eat silversides. For the first week he ate nothing, then he ate everything on a stick, and now it's only silversides. Picky little fish he is!

Matt Sable
09/02/2005, 12:23 PM
If none of the sites posted above have any GDM's, JustRareFish.com had two last time I looked. And with tank sizes, I think Scott W. Michael said one could be kept in a 10g. Since they are only supposed to be fed 2-3 times a week, I don't think their waste is a big issue. I would probably put 2 in a 20g and not worry. I'm actually going to get one for my 55g reef tank. Well, Good Luck!!!

09/02/2005, 03:22 PM
FYI, just rare fish and marine aquatics are the same. And check feedback first, I had a good experience buying a GDM from jrf, but I know someone else had a terrible experience.

09/02/2005, 06:11 PM
What is the price range for one of these?

09/03/2005, 03:01 AM
The one at the LFS near me is $200 I think.

Jeremy Blaze
09/03/2005, 09:03 AM
Eric Borneman wrote an article a couple months ago in Aquarium Fish MAgazine about one he keeps in a reef tank. I think it was 30 or 40 gallons. Very interesting. You may look for it, or contact him for info.

Wee Man
09/03/2005, 02:41 PM
i kept one in a 20 gallon. he never caused any problems and ate frozen raw shrimp and scallops from my hands. he was my favorite fish ever, and i got him for only 40 bucks.

09/03/2005, 08:15 PM
Originally posted by Wee Man
i kept one in a 20 gallon. he never caused any problems and ate frozen raw shrimp and scallops from my hands. he was my favorite fish ever, and i got him for only 40 bucks.

Were you the one I read about that got a GDM from an unknowing LFS? Man, wish I could've gotten one that cheap, and locally at that!

And Criccio is right. I read about the person who got the eel in terrible shape before ordering and it made me nervous. But there was a few other people who had good experiences (I really couldnt find much feedback for JRF or MA, even using the search?). I took the risk because I couldnt find it anywhere else, and had a very positive experience. Perhaps the eel that arrived in bad shape was just a VERY bad mistake. I DO feel bad for that person, but others have had good experience. And if I ever want a fish I absolutely cant find anywhere locally or on most online sites, I'll probably go back to MA or JRF.

09/03/2005, 11:45 PM
I've had my melatremus for almost a year now in a 20 gallon along with a chestnut moray and I've never had water quality issues.

Live rock and a SEIO 620 seems to be sufficient.

The eels don't move out of the rocks much from my experience and I've never been concerned about them escaping (knock on wood).

BTW, I got my for a steal price ($40-ish CAD), Ha! Ha! The joys of wholesale access.

Anyway, LukFox, your eel's color is just awesome! Mine is more of a butter yellow:


And while I'm at it, the chestnut (although, I suspect it might be a viper moray...):


09/04/2005, 12:01 AM
Taxes, beautiful morays!! I think your dwarf's color is beautiful and I love the chestnut (I didnt think that vipers had the spots on the head?)! Anymore pictures of both of them?

09/04/2005, 03:38 AM
What the hell...? It deleted my post!!

Anyway, I was saying:

I'll try to grab some more pics, but as you probably know, these things aren't exactly eager to pose, haha.

I'm not sure about the chestnut/viper right now. It literally is the size of a standard ballpoint pen. Definitive ID is probably impossible at this stage but hopefully that changes in a couple months.

A quick note though, I have both eels housed with various crustaceans (peppermint shrimps, a couple different kinds of hermits and an emerald crab), a seahorse and some snails with no problems. That said, I imagine they'd take small fish like gobies pretty handily.

09/04/2005, 08:55 AM
wow expensive but i think i will save for one once my tank is up and going i like the look of them and i dont have to worry the way i would with a zebra moray or some other of the same kind.

09/04/2005, 09:58 AM
I'm sure it's a chestnut, especially since a viper gets to about 3'. Here's a thread with another pic for comparison. If I would have known it was "reef safe" I would have picked this one up, oh well...http://reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=646402&highlight=chestnut

Hey keef, let me know when you're ready for a dwarf because they're usually always available out here for ~150. Us clown folk have to stick together...;)

09/04/2005, 10:13 AM
cool chris and ill have to get you pics of the pei pups. the lady out here says her sire was the pei in the last westminster. and it looks alot like him but i have to research more.

09/04/2005, 08:04 PM
I can wait, Taxes. But be sure to get some good ones of the chestnut :). Those guys are just way too cool.

And just a random note, my eel wolfed down 4 whole pieces of krill today.. wierdest and pickiest fish I've ever had! Next he wont like silversides anymore :rolleye1: . Hopefully that's not the case though and he'll start eating strips of fresh fish, prawns, squid, and all the rest again.

09/05/2005, 12:55 AM
I've got a question for you all (sorry to highjack ^^); how many of you have kept several of these animals together? I'm thinking of getting one or two more to throw in with my guy but am interested in the interaction between the animals first. No info in Scott Micheals book, so yeah.

09/05/2005, 07:55 AM
I keep two together with no problems at all. Sometimes they hang out, but most of the time they do their own thing.

09/05/2005, 10:17 AM

Do you have a mated pair and they act like that, or is it just two eels together? Just wondering if it makes a difference at all :).

09/05/2005, 10:39 AM
wow i cant believe i want all these expensive fish. im going to have to figure a way to save on the side so the wife doesnt know she would keel me if she knew i got an eel that was more than 49.99 plus tax.

i like to get my fish in pairs or groups but no way i can afford 300 for 2 eels. so i would like to get 1 ill let you know chris when i have smuggled enough into the fishbank for 1 but im trying to get my pair of lineatus fairy wrasses/scotts fairys from cook isls/laboutti fairy wrasses/bimac anthias/ventrallis anthias/sunburst anthias/pair of Moorish idols/pair of naso tangs first

09/05/2005, 07:13 PM
LukFox, they were purchased separately. The smaller of the two was originally purchased as part of a pair, and then two days later I found the darker "male" on my carpet in the morning, I was PO'd. So, I ended up getting the larger darker one from JRF. I'm considering selling the two I have and pick up one of the "pairs" available out here, but I don't know if it's really worth it.

That's quite a list Keith, I'm sure glad I don't have that many fishes on my wish list. Although, it's not like my girlfriend would let me do anything about it anyway, the clowns/carpets are enough. ;)

FYI, look like they have one here...http://www.atlantisaquarium.net/

09/06/2005, 04:21 AM
hey chris if your going to do that let me know maybe we can work something out :-P and hows the pei doing? havent seen many pics of yours.

09/06/2005, 08:03 AM
Awsome Morays!!! I love eels. Just wish I had a tank with a lid to keep one in.... There is another kind of dwarf moray that is gold... let me find out what it is and I'll post the name.

The one I'm thinking of though never gets more than a few inches long if I remember correctly.

09/06/2005, 08:15 AM
man at 300 an eel its looking less and less likely i will be getting one.
i know i am going to do the fairy wrasses and anthias tho.

09/08/2005, 01:04 PM
Does it pose any danger to smaller fishes?
Like gobies and blennies?
Might be keeping with shrimps too...

09/08/2005, 01:28 PM
Keith, they are half that out here, so if/when you want one let me know (hopefully one of the LFS's has one).

09/12/2005, 03:55 AM
didn't have time to read. but can u guys tell me if theres only 1 of these eel around? as far as i know theres' only 1 species??

are they aggressive as in biting ur hand? how do they handle stress, water conditions?

i know an eel is like a fish but its totally diff't.


09/12/2005, 04:41 AM
thanks chris i will have to do that. i just got the sand formy tank going with the black moon sand :-P different look and im going to build a mountain of rock/cinder blocks so there will be tons of swimthru's and im going to have a reef in 1 section of the tank and the rest open for swimming fish. its something i havent really seen lately hope my vision comes out as pretty as i see it.

09/14/2005, 01:54 AM
i have 2 dwarfs (2 males and a female) in a 30 gallon. All is well :)

I love these guys/girls!!


09/14/2005, 03:13 AM
so how is their diet like? do they bite ur hand if u wanan clean the tank?

09/14/2005, 08:11 AM
Zemuron, if you dont see my message over at your DGM thread, I said you need to empty your mailbox :).

Greenfroggiespawn, they eat small meaty foods. Things that are about an 1-1.5" is just about right. Pieces of krill, silversides, strips of fish, prawns, squid, and many other things like that. And no, when you clean the tank they stay tucked away in their cave. They arent going to come out to attack you, so long as you dont go wiggling your finger in their cave while cleaning the tank, especially if they're hungry..:lol: .

09/16/2005, 09:25 PM
i really want one and decide to keep one in teh FUGE which has bi color blenny, shrimps, hermits..

in the mean tiem im gonna setup another tank for it.

where can i read more info? and how often to feed? i heard i dont have to feed that much, that often.

09/16/2005, 10:57 PM
i feed mine everyday for the initial week (if they eat ) to get them settled in. Now i'm going to every other day (or 3 days a week). Feed until they refuse. How big is your fuge?

09/16/2005, 11:33 PM
Also what kind of shrimps? Depending on the type, they might end up as food.

I feed mine 2-3 times a week. Feed until they refuse. You'll know if they're hungry. They'll be out at the glass, in the open, begging for food like any other fish.

More info, well, most of what's on the net or in books is just a small paragraph of basic info. This thread has some pretty good info in it though. Run a search on RC on them too for more threads. Also, fishbase gives their characteristics and good info as well.

09/17/2005, 08:02 PM
awsome fish

09/27/2005, 12:02 AM
i got mine in a 10g with about 2 lbs lr and ive had mine for about a month
ive been hand feeding mine enriched prawns
at first i dropped prawns in and he took them readily so i weened him to hand feed by wriggling the prawn infront of his cave then i slowly brought him up to the top of the tank so he works for his food a little bit
i also do water changes almost daily to keep nutrient lvls down
my DGM likes higher salinity at 32ppm
if it gets to 31 he hides and stays hidden until i bring it back up to 32 and then hes active and swiming
oh and i also put a pistol shrimp in with him and well the next day he wouldnt eat ......

09/27/2005, 03:46 AM
My condolences on your shrimp, but I thank you for confirming that I made the right choice to NOT buy the DGM at the LFS.

shane 1111
10/27/2005, 10:02 AM
i am geting one

10/27/2005, 10:33 AM
cool congrats i was still thinking about it but cant bring myself to pay what people want for them. they do look cool and i may add one to my 300 but at this point im trying to get the tank cycled

cherubfish pair
07/09/2006, 12:03 AM
It's hard to believe that no one mentioned how big these things get.

Or did I miss that info?

Great thread!

shane 1111
07/09/2006, 02:29 AM
they get 10"

cherubfish pair
07/09/2006, 12:56 PM
shane 1111, do you think they would eat these? The 1/4" - 1/2" size?


Except they only come in quantities of 85-100. I wonder if someone else sells them in smaller quantities.

shane 1111
07/09/2006, 09:09 PM
they can be fed frozen foods and be just fine. i dont like teaching them that they should look for live food