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Dwarf Gourami care questions

1317 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  AquaAurora
Hey guys.
I am setting up a 24 inch long 20 gallon aquarium.
It is heavily planted and is done/almost done cycling.
I am looking for some colorful fish that do not constantly breed, are relatively small, and are peaceful.
I would like to put in a Dwarf Gourami(s) in to the aquarium, but I have some questions.
First, Can I house 2 males in my 24 inch long 20 gallon? If I can not, will the Dwarf Gourami be lonely?
Second, The "male" Dwarf Gouramis at my local fish store are almost colorless, but I see Dwarf Gouramis with beautiful vibrant colors on the internet. Will this color start appearing in my aquarium with certain foods? If so, what must I do to make their colors pop?
Third, since this tank has been newly established/cycled, I would like a good "first fish" that can handle some water quality fluctuation. (A fish that is a little more tolerable to nitrites, ammonia, etc.). Would the Dwarf Gourami be a good candidate as a "first fish"?
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Personally I'd be very hesitant to put to males together in anything smaller than a 40 breeder. They are a member of the same family as betta and even with their own territories there will be a dominant male who will harass the other (especially at feeding time). In reguards to your lfs colorless gourami, it could be a few things :females (look at top fin, is the back of it rounded/smooth or pointed/slightly elongated when flared?), sick/stressed (don't buy if this is the case), subordination male(s) should be one with more color and obviously 'the boss' in the tank.
You can get "color enhancing" flake foods, I'd suspect an occasional (small) treat of (thrawed) frozen blood worms or brine shrimp and the like will help them color up (don't over feed). Usualy they loose color when sick or under alot of stress (move to new home, no good cover, something scaring them ('boss' fish or something they think will eat them in the tank or cat trying to 'go fish', etc). Gradual acclimation (flaot bag to get temp same then use drip acclimation for 30-60 mins with tank water then net and put them into tank (don't add lfs water to tank). Leave lights off for the rest of the day and try to leave them be to get use to their new home. Loss of color during this transfer is normal (but make sure if male that is has color before its netted from store tank).. I recently got some otos, they turned ghost white during drip acclimation but had their color back within an hour after getting into thier new tank.
I don't think gouramis are a good starter fish, they're more durable then the imfamously delicate fish but I think the common: platies, tetra, mollies, guppies are better fish for freshly cycled tank with still fluxing parameters. Gouramis are kind of middle ground for durability (imo).
If you're lucky enough to have females at your lfs get 3 females and 1 male, only having 1-2 females will lead to the male harassing them to mate too much, 3 spreads the 'love' around more. Make sue there is plenty of line of sight break up this includes plants/decor that goes up to the surface, so the gourami don't have to duck to the substrate to hide when getting bothered by other gourami.
I've owned a Powdr Blue Dwarf Gourami for 20 months that passed recently (average life spam is 24 months), he had great personality and got along with his tank mates before they moved to a bigger tank. But every fish is different, I've read some people telling theirs were real terrors and would h arras other community fish. I will also warn you about Dwarf Gourami Disease which is pretty rampant, I was fortunate enough to get one that did not have it, but its always a possibility and will usually kill a gourami before its 6 months old if I remember right. Never buy a fish that looks sick or is in a tank (or store) with sick/dead/dying fish, this disease will spread to other gouramis that share same water.
If you want something like a dwarf gourami but without the risk of the disease and more peaceful, look into honey gourami. They're about the same size and general body shape, you can keep several in that set up (remember still line of sight break ups are always good), and their colors very from golden, to yellow, to tan, or yellowish brown. Flame gouramis are not honey gourami (its another member of the dwarf gourami family and will be aggressive/prone to the disease) so don't get sold those by accident (flame are usually mostly red/orange with a bit of blue).
If you do still go with dwarf gourami, if possible find a 'local' breeder instead of buying from a lfs, more likely to get a healthy line of fish that's more durable and won't have the disease.
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Thank you sooooooo much!
This is a hugggeee help
Thank you sooooooo much!
This is a hugggeee help
Always happy to help ^^ to be clear I am not trying to scare you off from dwarf gourami, they are an awesome fish, but there are a few catches with them as mentioned above so just want you to be well informed before choosing.
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