Pearl Gourami Small
Common name: Pearl gourami
Scientific name: Trichopodus leerii
Distribution: Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia
Habitat: Weed-choked lowland swamps
Temperature: 76 – 80°F
pH: 6.0 – 8.2
Adult size: 5 inches
Sexing: Mature males will develop a bright orange throat and belly, and have a longer, ragged-looking anal fin
Diet: Unfussy omnivore that will readily take all sorts of dried, frozen, and live foods
Conspecifics: Males can be aggressive towards conspecifics, including single females. Trichopodus leerii is best kept singly or in larger groups (4+) of a single male and multiple females, where aggression is dispersed. This species does seem to exhibit social tendencies in larger groups.
Tankmates: Very peaceful with most community fish, including small tetras. As this tends to be a rather skittish species, avoid housing with very boisterous or aggressive tankmates.
Notes: Like all gourami species, Trichopodus leerii requires access to a layer of air above the surface, as it will gulp oxygen into its labyrinth organ, a specialized respiratory organ that allows it to survive in stagnant swamps and seasonal pools in the wild. This skittish species will find comfort in a heavily-planted tank, especially with floating plants to provide cover.
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