Honey Gourami (Trichogaster chuna)
The Honey Gourami is a peaceful, shy, and attractive little fish that should only be kept in community tanks with plants and other mild fish. It is a nervous fish and easily accented by boisterous fish. An established tank with good water quality is suggested, These Gouramis get bored very quickly so they do require plenty of plants, decorations and places that they can explore as well as hide in if they feel threatened at all. With the right conditions, this fish would be ideal for the beginner as well as the experienced aquarist.
There are a few different colour forms available with this fish, but their natural body colour is a lovely honey shade of orangy-brown with the infrequent appearance of fiery red and dark blue and black.
Their throat area is a silvery colour and disappears quite quickly once it reaches their head or belly. On their fins, the central portion is a light yellow, and the rims are a deep orange. Females are silvery with a very light grey on their fins.
|Scientific Name||Trichogaster chuna|
|Other Names||Sunset Gourami, Red Flame Gourami|
|Aquarium Level||Middle - Top|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Best kept as||Groups 5+|
|Lifespan||up to 8 years|
|PH||6.0 - 7.5|
|GH||4 - 10|
|72 - 82℉|
22.2 - 27.8℃
The Honey Gourami is native to Bangladesh and India. They inhabit slow-moving water in pools, ditches, swamps, ricefields and some rivers and lakes that have thick plants and vegetation.
Generally, these waters will have a meagre amount of oxygen in them as well as soft and poorly mineralised waters. Honey gouramis can get through this dilemma by having a labyrinth organ; this works much like a lung, meaning they have to visit the water's surface to get their oxygen. This organ will allow them to survive in poorly oxygenated waters where much other fish could not.
Other Gouramis of interest
What to feed the Honey Gourami
Honey Gouramis will do well with almost any type of food, but it is recommended to feed your fish a varied diet to not only make sure they are getting all of the nutrition they need but also to keep them happy.
High-quality tropical flake or pellet food should be the staple of their diet. Still, frequently you can supplement this with fresh vegetables and algae wafers as well as frozen and freeze-dried food such as bloodworm, brine shrimp, and daphnia and occasionally some live food.
How to Sex the Honey Gourami
It is relatively simple to differentiate males from female Honey Gouramis. The males have more elongated fins, with a pointed dorsal fin and extended anal fin rays and are a lot more vibrant in colour, whereas the female is duller and generally get slightly larger than the males. However, it can be almost impossible to tell in some bred colour morphs.
How to Breed the Honey Gourami
Honey Gouramis are sexually mature from the age of 6 months. By then the females can produce healthy mature eggs.
A relatively big separate breeding tank will be required so that the female can swim away from the male if his advances are relentless. You will also need to have the temperature higher than they usually have and you will need to have the water level shallower than usual.
They will also require floating plants or flowers in the tank as the bubble nest needs something to stick to on the surface of the water. A tank full of loose debris and larger grains of gravel as well as a sandy substrate scattered with pieces of tiny sticks and leaves would also be ideal so the male can build the nest.
Make sure you condition your gouramis with plenty of food for a couple of weeks before breeding, this induces spawning. If they haven't been fed enough protein-rich food, they will not spawn.
Choose your healthiest, best size, and most vibrant fish and place them in the breeding tank. Once your chosen couple has been together for a little while in the breeding tank, keep your eye out for eggs. Once all the available eggs have been laid, you should remove the female from the tank and keep the male with the eggs as he will take care for and guard them until they hatch.
Once the eggs have all hatched, remove the male and then feed the fry with liquid food. Keep the babies alone until they are big enough to fend for themselves.