Dwarf Gourami (Trichogaster Lalius) Complete Caresheet

Dwarf gouramies are popular fish we are used to seeing in aquariums. It owes its popularity to the impressive beauty of blue and orange stripes. It is possible to see it in many aquariums thanks to its small size, durability, easy breeding and beautiful appearance. It is a peaceful fish and suitable for keeping in community aquariums. They can grow up to a maximum of 8 centimeters in length. Females are slightly smaller than males.

Dwarf gourami is one of the labyrinth fish species. Labyrinth fish differ from other fish in their breathing pattern. These fish can both gill breathing and rise to the water surface and breathe from the atmosphere. In other words, they can make breathing similar to lung respiration. They have an organ called the labyrinth that allows this. When the water gets dirty, they use these properties more. Another feature that differs from other fish is that they prepare for breeding by making foam. This is another feature of labyrinth fish. The male dwarf gourami nests by producing bubbles during the breeding season. It also equips this nest with leaves, twigs, and plant roots. When the female lays eggs, the male collects the eggs with her fish mouth and carries them to the nest. Dwarf Gourami guard the eggs until they hatch.
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Dwarf Gourami
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Easy to maintain, this breed is suitable for beginners. It should be kept in an aquarium of at least 40 liters. The important thing is that the aquarium is set up correctly and aquarium care is not interrupted. It can be kept in a community aquarium with peaceful fish. If there are aggressive fish in the aquarium, it will be badly affected and become timid. It should not be kept in the same aquarium with larger or aggressive fish.. Not compatible with guppy and betta fish species. Fin-biting fish such as tetrazone should also be avoided.

Dwarf gouramis have large amounts of plants in their natural habitat. There should be a lot of plants in the aquarium to ensure the conditions in their natural environment. Plants both create hiding spots and are used for nesting during breeding. The aquarium should be placed in a quiet place. Loud environments can cause this fish species to become stressed.

Male dwarf gouramis can behave aggressively towards other dwarf gouramies and fish of similar build. Sometimes they can have aggressive attitudes towards females. In fact, the male dwarf gourami is generally peaceful and calm under normal circumstances. When the female is placed in the aquarium, it begins to show territorial behavior, the breast becomes purple and the dorsal fin turns red. Even after he has built and built a nest, he can see the female as an opponent and even attack him. When kept in a large aquarium, their aggressive behavior will be less if the plants are hidden and the fish are given larger areas.

This type of fish has been breeding in aquariums for many years and different variations have been obtained over time. The most popular varieties of dwarf gourami are Rainbow Dwarf Gourami, Powder Blue Gourami, Neon Blue Gourami, and Flame Dwarf Gourami.

Dwarf Gourami Characteristics

The scientific name of Dwarf Gourami is Trichogaster lalius. Natural habitat is Pakistan, India, Bangladesh region. Dwarf gouramies can be kept at pH levels between 6 and 8. The aquarium water should be between 22 and 28 degrees. In addition, there should not be too much difference between the room temperature and the temperature of the aquarium water. If the temperature difference increases, the labyrinth organ may be damaged.


They have a peaceful character and can be kept in the same aquarium with other peaceful species. It should not be placed in the same aquarium with very large and aggressive fish. Even if they are not aggressive, they can be quite timid towards large fish.. It is aggressive towards colorful fish such as betta and guppies and its own kind.

Compatible Fish

Corydoras Species can be fed in the same aquarium with peaceful carp such as harlequin rasbora, peaceful barb species, small loachs such as kuhli eels, most tetras, small catfish such as otocinclus stingrays, and small rainbow fish.

Fin-biting fish such as tiger barbs (tetrazon) and clown barbs, brightly colored fish such as guppies and other labyrinthine fish including betta splendens should be avoided. It is beneficial not to put two male dwarf gouramines in the same aquarium. In a small aquarium, the male can be aggressive towards the female.

Gender Discrimination

Male dwarf gouramies are more colorful than females if not exposed to stress. The dorsal fin is longer and the abdomen is smaller. The female fish is generally gray in color and the dorsal fin is usually more oval.

Dwarf Gourami Gender Discrimination
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Dwarf Gourami Care

The fact that the fish can take air from the atmosphere thanks to its labyrinth organ does not mean that you can disrupt the aquarium care. As with other fish, the accumulation of toxic substances in the water seriously damages the immune system of the fish. Therefore, at least 25% water change should be done every week.


It is a fish that feeds on omnivores. It feeds on small invertebrates, plants and algae in nature. It can eat any living, fresh, flake or pelleted food in the aquarium. Its main food should be pellets or flakes. At times it is beneficial to provide a variety of food with bloodworm, artemia, daphnia and vegetables. Feed should be given as much as it is eaten 1-2 times a day and in a short time.


They don't get sick very often in a well-kept aquarium because the dwarf gourami is a hardy species. Bacterial infections, constipation and hole-in-the-head disease can be seen if the quality of water and feed is not considered. Every new fish, plant, or even decor added to the aquarium risks transmitting disease. The best thing to do is to clean every new decor thoroughly and keep each new fish in a quarantine tank for a few weeks to avoid surprise diseases.

In recent years, a virus has been identified in dwarf gouramid that causes drowsiness, darkening of color and tumor formation. Unfortunately, this virus that causes death has no cure. If there are swordfish or moly fish in the same aquarium, they are also infected.

Because it is a durable fish, it is a species that can overcome diseases quickly. Early intervention makes a significant contribution to the rapid recovery of the disease. Preventing the disease from occurring is more effortless than treating. For this, imitate the natural environment in the aquarium. This way, your fish will be happier. Stress-free fish are less susceptible to disease.

Dwarf Gourami Fish Aquarium Requirements

As it is a small fish, it can be kept in a small aquarium. If a dwarf gourami is to be fed, a 40 liter aquarium will suffice. However, it is useful to choose the one that has at least 70 liters. Large aquarium prevents sudden changes in water. You can also keep other peaceful fish in the aquarium. An effective aquarium filter that does not create excess flow is required. It is beneficial to provide extra ventilation with air stone.

Dark aquarium sand brings out the dwarf gourami color better. It is useful to create many hiding areas in the aquarium. Take care to create dense vegetation. If there are few hiding places and no plants in the aquarium, dwarf gouramies will be timid. If possible, keep the plants floating above the water and provide an opening for breathing. Place the aquarium where there is no noise.

Dwarf Gourami Breeding

Although breeding of dwarf gouramis is slightly different from other fish, they are not too difficult to breed. It is enough to have a 60 or 70 liter aquarium for breeding. Reduce the water depth to 15-20 centimeters and raise the water temperature to 26-29 degrees Celsius. You don't need a powerful filter to keep the water clean, a sponge filter is enough. Keep plants floating on the water with fine-leaved plants such as java moss, foxtail pine plants or loot. Because plants are used by dwarf gourami both as shelter and in nest building. If the male exhibits aggressive behavior, the female fish should be able to hide among the plants.

Take male and female fish in separate aquariums. Start feeding your fish live or frozen food. The belly of a well-nourished female fish is filled with eggs after 3-4 days and grows. Put one or more females that you think are ready in the breeding aquarium and continue feeding. Leave the male fish in the dark after a few days. You will see that the male begins to nest by blowing bubbles. It uses leaves, branches, roots, and other plant debris to shape the nest. After a while, bubbles form on the water surface. It is the nest prepared by male fish.

When the nest is ready, the male fish begins courting. This usually happens in the afternoon or evening. It moves around the female, vibrates her dorsal fin and tries to pull her below the nest. If the female is willing to breed, she turns around the male and touches the male's back with his mouth. Seeing this, the male fish wraps the female and turns it over. Inverted female fish lay 50-70 eggs at a time. The eggs are immediately fertilized by the male. Many of them rise to the water surface spontaneously as they are lighter than water. The male collects the eggs that do not enter the nest or sink into the water with his mouth and puts them into the nest. A total of 400 to 500 eggs are fertilized in this way. If there is another female in the aquarium, the male fish will also mate with him.

Since the male fish will become aggressive after breeding, you need to remove the females from the aquarium and return them to the main aquarium. Until the young hatch, the male fish protects the nest. Depending on the water temperature, the eggs will hatch within 12 to 36 hours. The fry remain in the nest and continue to develop. They start to leave the nest after an average of 3 days. Male fish should be removed from the breeding aquarium as they can now start eating their fry.

Feed the fry that start swimming freely in the water with infusion or fry fish food until they are big enough. You can then feed them with Artemia or micro maggots.

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