Are you looking to add more life into your freshwater aquarium? Aside from the usual goldfish and arowana, you might want to consider the pretty gourami.
Gourami fish are popular tropical and sub-tropical aquarium fish. This species of fish has been bred into different hybrids such as Powder Blue (Blue) Dwarf Gourami, Neon Blue (Rainbow) Dwarf Gourami, and the Flame (Fire Red/ ‘Blood’ Red) Dwarf Gourami.
15 Basic Facts About Gourami Fish
1.) One of the most popular tropical freshwater fish grown in home aquariums and ponds.
2.) In nature, they live in waterways and paddy field in places like Pakistan, India, Assam, Bangladesh, China, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia and the Philippines .
3.) There are between 130 to 135 recognized species of gourami fish.
4.) There are several species of gournami which are farmed for their meat. Giant gourami ( Ospronemus gouramy ) are often deep-fried and served in sweet-sour sauce, chili sauce, and other spices.
5.) These fish can absorb oxygen from the atmosphere using its labyrinth organ. This allows them to gulp air and use atmospheric oxygen.
6.) Generally regarded as peaceful, gouramis are still capable of harassing or killing smaller or long-finned fish.
7.) Their natural habitat is thick with vegetation. slow moving waterways, ponds, canals and man made ponds.
8.) Males are a bright red – almost orange – background with blue green vertical stripes and a blue green belly. There are different range of colors from blue, green, yellow, gold, pink, white, brownish and red and also come multicolored varieties. some are hybridized to produce in between colors.
9.) Male and female gourami are almost identical. Once they are older it is easier to tell males apart from females by looking at their dorsal fin. A male’s dorsal fin will be longer and pointier. In some species, the male will also have other distinguishing characteristics such as longer, flowing anal fins.
10.) Small ones – can be only two inches some are non – aggressive, can live peacefully with other fish species in one tank
11.) Omnivorous therefore eats all types of fish food available. These fish prefers live foods bait like mosquitoes larvae, blood worms , tubifex, brine shrimps etc…
12.) Hardy – Although this does not mean that, you do not have to change the water regularly to prevent toxins building up.
13.) Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), giant gourami can easily be grown and thrive on a variety of organic food including kangkong, duckweed, and small insects.
14.) When breeding gourami, it is important to have a separate aquarium meant especially for this purpose. The aquarium should be dimly lit and well planted. When spawning, a male will build a bubble nests made of saliva covered bubbles.
15.) Depending of species, adult gourami can lay between 100 to over 700 eggs !
Bibliography and References:
- The Ultimate Aquarium by Mary Bailey and Gina Sandford
- The Encyclopedia of Aquarium Fish by Dick Mills
- Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Official Gazette : http://www.officialgazette.gov.ph/2011/03/30/da-recommends-giant-gourami-for-aquaculture/
- UCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org Archived
- Sanford, Gina (1999). Aquarium Owner’s Guide. New York: DK Publishing. ISBN 0-7894-4614-6
- Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2014). “Trichogaster lalius“ in FishBase. February 2014 version.