Powder Blue Dwarf Gourami (Trichogaster lalius) Species Profile & Care Guide
The Powder Blue dwarf Gourami is the attractive colour morph of the Dwarf Gourami.
They have a labyrinth organ, which is part of the fish, allowing it to absorb atmospheric oxygen into the blood directly.
The Powder Blue Gourami is a peaceful, shy and hardy fish that is a suitable choice for the beginner aquarist. They are relatively undemanding as long the tank is properly set-up and maintained. These fish are prone to disease if the water quality is not kept up, so their tank does need regular maintenance. The location of the tank is essential too. These fish will become nervous and will feel anxious if their tanks are in noisy places or there is heavy traffic around the tanks.
Powder Blue Gouramis have oval-shaped bodies that are somewhat compressed. Their fins are round and relatively large. The ventral fins are threadlike and contain touch-sensitive cells that are remarkably perceptive. They have a fantastic iridescent powder blue primary colour with very few vertical red stripes.
|Scientific Name||Trichogaster lalius|
|Other Names||Coral Blue Dwarf Gourami, Blue Dwarf Gourami.|
|Aquarium Level||All Levels|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Best kept as||Groups 5+|
|Lifespan||4 - 7 years|
|Temperature||72 - 82 ℉ (22.2 - 27.8 ℃)|
|PH||6.0 - 8.0|
|GH||5 - 18|
|TDS||50 - 140|
Natural Habitat of the Powder Blue Dwarf Gourami
The Powder Blue Gourami is found in Pakistan through Thailand, the Malaysian Archipelago, Vietnam, Korea, Japan and China in Southeast Asia.
They inhabit slow-moving streams, creeks, irrigation channels, rice fields and other agricultural lands. They fundamentally occur in areas with dense vegetation.
Other Gouramis of interest
A varied diet is essential to the Powder Blue Gourami. They prefer both meaty foods and algae-based foods. An algae-based flake food, along with freeze-dried artemia, bloodworms and tubifex will provide these fish with proper nutrition.
Breeding the Powder Blue Dwarf Gourami
Breeding the pink-blue dwarf Gourami is not very difficult, but the behaviour of males can be somewhat unpredictable.
It is best to provide a separate breeding tank and keep the water level low. Normal water parameters are sufficient, but the temperature should be raised slightly. Add a small soft pneumatic sponge filter or some peat filters. They need some fine-leaf plants such as Hornwort or Milfoil and some floating plants such as Ricca to feel comfortable.
Sometimes, during courtship and after building a nest, males will think that females are opponents and bully them. Therefore, plants are essential for females to have a place to retreat.
A male and one or more females will need to be conditioned well with small helpings of frozen and live foods several times a day. When well-fed, females should start filling out with eggs, appearing very round. Transfer one or more females into the breeding tank several days before the male, preferably in the dark, and continue to feed them conditioning foods. Then add the male.
This species of Gourami are bubble nest builders. In an aquarium, you will see a group of bubbles on the top of the water. Once the nest has been constructed, males will usually start wooing in the afternoon or evening. He will raise his dorsal fin and start swimming around a female, trying to attract her to his nest.
If the female is willing, she will start circling with the male. To lay eggs, she will touch the male with her mouth on the back or tail. The male then embraces the female, eventually turning her back to back, and the female will release about five dozen clean eggs.
Once the female lays her eggs, the male will immediately fertilize them. Eggs are much lighter than water and will float to the top. The male will collect any eggs that are not in the nest with his mouth and place them in his bubble nest.
The pair will then spawn again until anything from 300 to 800 eggs are produced. If there are also other females in the tank, the male may breed with all of them.
After spawning is complete, you must remove the females from the tank; otherwise, the male will become intolerant and possibly attack them. He will continue to manage and guard the eggs until they hatch.
The eggs will hatch around 12 - 36 hours later, depending on the temperature, but will remain in the bubble nest and continue developing.
After about three days, the fry will become free-swimming. At this time, the male should also be removed as he may consume the young. Free swimming fry can be fed infusoria or a liquid fry food until they are big enough to eat baby brine shrimp.