Three-spot Gourami | Trichogaster trichopterus
Labyrinth Fish / Belontiidae / Three-spot Gourami
Profile: Three-spot Gourami
Synonyms: Labrus trichopterus, Osphromenus trichopterus, O. saigonensis, Trichopodus cantoris, T. siamensis, T. trichopterus
Physical description: An elongated, moderately compressed species with a small dorsal fin and a long anal fin. The original coloration-as may selectively produced morphs are available today-is fairly bland. The back is brown and the flanks are lighter brown with a greenish iridescence. The flanks are marked with faint transverse stripes, and two obvious spots mark the body, one at the caudal peduncle, and the other at the mid-section. The third "spot" from which this gourami gained its name is the eye. The fins are generally gray-brown, save for the anal fin which has orange spots and an orange edge, The iris of the eye may be red. As previously mentioned, several variants are available.
Size/Length: To 6" (15 cm)
Similar species: None
Habitat: Sunny, well-planted areas in muddy and clear rivers, lakes, ponds, and drainage canals in Southeast Asia; Bali, Borneo, Myanmar (Burma), Java, Malaysia, Sumatra, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Aquarium: A 20" (60 cm) or 10 gallon (38 L) tank is sufficient for fish up to 3.5" (9 cm) in length. Fish larger than this require larger tanks. Follow suggestions for T. leeri.
Water chemistry: pH 5.7-8.5 (7.0), 3-35 dH (10), 75-86°C (24-30°C)
Social behavior: A peaceful fish ideal for a community tank. Do not combine with aggressive fish, like cichlids. Occasionally a male may attack a female during spawning season. If this occurs, remove one of the fish.
Suggested companions: Trichogaster, Colisa, Danios, Barbs, Corydoras, Angelfish, Loaches, Loricarids.
FOOD: Live; Tubifex , insects, insect larvae, crustaceans, hydra; flakes; pellets; chopped spinach and lettuce
Sexual differences: The dorsal fin is pointed in the male and the female is smaller, but plumper.
Breeding techniques: The tank water level should be lowered 4-6" (10-15 cm). The tank should have no circulation. Provide several females for the male, as he will drive off unreceptive mates. The male builds a bubble nest at the surface out of plants. Spawning takes place just below this nest. 500-1200 eggs are laid in the bubble nest where the male guards them. At this point, the female should be removed. The fry hatch after 20-30 hours, and are free-swimming after 4-5 days. The fry should be sorted out by size or else larger ones will cannibalize the smaller fry. Start feeding with small live foods.
Breeding potential: 5. This prolific species is easily bred when a suitable pair is found.
Remarks: There are many different color And pattern variants; although the most common are the blue, opaline or cosby, marbled, silver, and the golden. These variants are seen much more often than the original stain. This gourami is one of the hardiest of all aquarium fish. The blue form is now considered a sub-species (Trichogaster trichopterus sumatranus ).
Difficulty of care: 2. A hardy species recommended for the beginning aquariast.