Animal-World’s Featured Pet for this week is: The Dwarf Gourami!
You will often see Dwarf Gourami fish displayed at pet stores! They have brilliant colored bodies and stand out from many other fish. They are extremely popular among freshwater fish enthusiasts. The Dwarf Gourami Trichogaster lalius is also known as the Dwarf Banded Gourami because of their stripes or ‘bands’. Males are especially pretty – having very vibrant colors as well as a pointed dorsal fin.
There are several reasons why it is appealing to keep Dwarf Gouramis. Other than their beautiful neon colors, they also stay small once full-grown. They reach a maximum size of 2 inches and can be kept in smaller aquariums. They are quite hardy fish as well as a peaceful fish. They are good for beginner aquarists. They can be an ideal community fish and are more shy than aggressive. Many hybrid types of Dwarf Gourami’s have been developed as well. They come in many colors and varieties and are generally readily available. You can choose from any one of these types! A couple of these are the Powder Blue Dwarf Gourami and the Flame Dwarf Gourami.
Here is a cool fact about these guys! They are one of several labyrinth fish. The labyrinth fish have an organ which allows them to absorb oxygen directly into their bloodstreams They also create “bubble” nests during breeding. Dwarf Gouramis will go al out with their nests. They bring in plants, fibers, twigs, and other debris to help fill out their nests. Their eggs and fry are both lighter than water and the whole nest will float up to the surface of the water!
The Dwarf Gourami was first characterized in 1822 by a man named Hamilton. It has gone through several names. It was first described as Colisa lalia. In 1999 it was treated as part of the Polyacanthus genus. In 2009 it was changed to the current Trichogaster lalius. It’s homelands include the Far East, Assam, Bangladesh, west Bengal, and India. They tend to live in tropical areas with lots of vegetation. Some of the common rivers it inhabits are the Ganges River and the Baram River in Borneo.
Caring for Dwarf Gouramis is easy. They can be fed any number of flake foods, pellets foods, live foods, and fresh foods. Provide a flake or pellet food as the bulk of their nutrients and then offer small amounts of live bloodworms or brine shrimp. This will keep them healthy, happy, and thriving!
Set up an aquarium which provides a minimum of 5 gallons per gourami. That is a minimum however and they will do better with larger aquariums. They love lots of plants and hiding places, so this gives you the go-ahead to decorate as much as you want! There is a common misconception that gourami’s don’t need water changes due to their labyrinth organ. This is FALSE. They can and will develop toxin build-up and tissue degradation if they are not kept in a clean environment. You should change approximately 25% of their water on a weekly basis.
If you are a beginning fish owner, I highly recommend trying out the beautiful Dwarf Gourami! They should provide a good experience as your first fish! Not only are they beautiful and easy to care for, but there is such a wide range of hybrid dwarf gouramis to choose from! Have fun and good luck!
Read more on Animal-World’s Red Factor Canary page!
Jasmine is a team member at Animal-World and has contributed many articles and write-ups.