Common Name: Black Lined Sleeper Goby
Distribution: Uncommon in the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Distributed throughout the Indo-West Pacific region: from the Red Sea and East Africa to Indonesia, north to southern Japan, south to Australia. In Australia recorded from the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland south to Shellharbour in New South Wales.
Ecological Notes: Frequents silty flat sand patches, or rubble substrate. Usually found on outer reefs at the bottom of coral or rocky drop-offs, rarely in lagoons. Depth 1 – 45 m, usually 1 – 30 m.
Additional Notes: Two distinct black or reddish stripes from snout to extended filaments on tail, black patch on the rear of the first dorsal fin. Feeds on small burrowing animals by sifting mouthfulls of sand. Relatively rare species, sometimes seen singly, usually in pairs. Grows to 25 cm, commonly 18 cm.
References: R. Stuart-Smith, G. Edgar, A. Green, I. Shaw, Tropical Marine Fishes of Australia. Reed New Holland Publishers, 2015. p.407.
Atlas of Living Australia website at https://bie.ala.org.au/search?q=Valenciennea+helsdingeni. Accessed 12/07/18.
FishBase. Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2018. World Wide Web electronic publication. https://fishbase.ca/summary/Valenciennea-helsdingeni.html. Accessed 12/07/18.