Max Size: 15cm

Three Spot Gourami (Trichopodus trichopterus)

The Three Spot Gourami is calm, and a laid back species full of personality and playfulness, and they will express minimal amounts of aggression. They are easy to care for, as they are hardy and can adapt to a variety of different water conditions; this makes them an excellent addition to many community aquariums.

The Three Spot Gourami has a greyish-blue body and gets its name from the ornamental black dots that run horizontally. What is lightly confusing is the fact that you can only visually see two dots and not three like its name. There are two spots in the midsection of their body, but the eye is considered the third spot.

Quick Facts
Scientific NameTrichopodus trichopterus
Year Described1770
Other NamesBlue Gourami, Two Spot Gourami, Hairfin gourami
OriginsCambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam
Aquarium LevelMiddle - Top
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 5+
ReproductionBubble nest
Lifespanup to 5 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH5.5 - 8.5
GH3 - 35
75 - 86℉
23.9 - 30℃

Photos of the Three Spot Gourami

Three spot gourami
Three spot gourami
Three spot gourami
Three spot gourami

Natural Habitat

You can find the Three Spot Gouramis in Sumatra, Java, Borneo in Indonesia as well as Malaysia, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar, Vietnam and Singapore in Southeast Asia.

These fish inhabit still, sluggish, slow-moving waters in swamps, marshes, lowland wetlands and canals covered in dense vegetation.

Upon flood season they will migrate from permanent water bodies to flooded areas, such as seasonally swamped forests in the middle and lower Mekong. During the dry season, they will return to these permanent water bodies.

What to feed the Three Spot Gourami

The Three Spot Gourami is unfussy and will accept most foods offered.

A bulk of their diet should consist of algae, flake food or granules, but you will also need to provide them with some live food once in a while. The most popular choices are bloodworm, artemia and mosquito larvae.

How to sex the Three Spot Gourami

It is relatively straightforward to determine the sexes of this fish. The male is larger and develops a pointed dorsal and anal fin and has an elongated dorsal fin whereas the female is smaller and rounder in the belly.

How to breed the Three Spot Gourami

Three Spot Gouramis will become sexually mature around 8-12 months, and they can be reproduced successfully in the aquarium.

The males construct a bubble nest at the surface of the water and begin swimming back and forth to entice the female.

When the female is ready to produce, she will swim beneath the nest, and the male will then gently embrace her with his body, helping with the releasing of the eggs. He will then fertilise them immediately and will gently collect them with his mouth and place them in the nest.

Once the eggs have been fertilised, the male with gather them all up and places them into his bubble nest.

Once the female has finished releasing her eggs, she can lay anything up to 800 of them; she should be removed from the tank as the male will continually harass her, causing her unnecessary stress in the closed environment of an aquarium.

The eggs will hatch, usually around 20-30 hours later and the fry will become free-swimming 4-5 days after that. The male will look after and protect his babies until this point and then should be removed to avoid any unintended deaths when he tries to return them to the nest.

The fry should firstly be fed on infusoria or liquid fry food for the first week, after which they are big enough to accept nauplii, brine shrimp microworm and powdered flake.

The Three Spot Gourami has been featured on the following stamps

Singapore - 1962