Opaline Gourami care

If you’re looking for a unique, fun little fish, the Opaline Gourami could be the fish you’re looking for! The unique fish has beautiful coloration of blue and black, silver, or white combinations. In this article, we’ll outline a Opaline Gourami care guide for you.

The stunning fish is a small to medium sized fish, depending on your perspective (growing up to 6 inches) and is easy for beginning hobbyists to care for.

If you think this colorful fish might be a good option for your aquarium, check the care guide below to see how well the fish really fits with your needs and desires.

Opaline Gourami Care: Quick Intro

Opaline Gourami close up
Family: Osphronemidae
Scientific Name:Trichopodus Trichopterus
Other Names:Opaline gourami, Blue gourami, three spot gourami, and Gold gourami
Care Level:Beginner

Opaline Gourami is a fish that is easy to take care of and is perfect for beginner fish keepers. However, this species is not a naturally occurring fish and comes from selective breeding and is considered a distinct variation of Three-spot gourami.

This fish is also known for a few names. It is sometimes called the Marbled Gourami is a variant of either Blue gourami or Three-spot Gourami. Depending on the store, Gourami can be found under any of these names in looking for this fish.

Author Note: Opaline Gourami are graceful swimmers and work well in a community tank. However, the male Opaline Gourami can become quite territorial.

The issues the males have with the territory can be alleviated by making sure the tank they live in is large enough to claim the space they want.

Natural Habitat, Identification, and Where to Buy

The Opaline Gourami does not have a natural habitat because it is not naturally occurring. However, despite not being a natural wild fish, they are such a popular fish that they can be found in China, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, and more.

The predecessor to the modern Opaline Gourami was the Cosby gourami. The Cosby gourami was developed in America. This early form was known for having a blue and silver base color that had enhancement from dark blue marks.

Commercial fish breeders are responsible for breeding several variations of this species with brilliant colors. Breeders in Eastern Europe and Asia accomplished making gold and silver variations in 1970; these colors increased the popularity of this fish.

The waterways these fish live in are typically lowland wetlands. Examples of this type of water are marshes, canals, swamps, and peatlands. These waterways are full of plants, standing or slow-moving water.

Author Note: As far as diet is concerned, Gourami is an omnivore species. Their diet includes zooplankton, small crustaceans, and the larvae from insects.

It is essential to know that creeding new breeds with different colors of Opaline Gourami often requires inbreeding. Fish bred from this process can have health problems, deformities, or easily injure.

This fish species tend to live a long life and are generally hardy outside of possible genetic issues. This good health means they are an excellent pick for those new to the fish-keeping hobby.

Optimal Water Conditions for Opaline Gourami Care

Water Temperature: 73 to 82 F
Water Flow Rate:Low
Water Hardness:5 and 35 dGH

Tank Setup

Opaline Gourami swimming
Minimum Tank Size: 35 gallons
Optimal Tank Size:40 gallons
Optimal Tank Shape:Longer than wider
Recommended Filter Type:A filter that does not create a lot of turbulence in the water

For Gouramis to be healthy, they need a temperature between 73 to 82 Fahrenheit. Therefore, the room that houses your tank should be as close as possible to the water in the tank to have an optimal temperature.

A consistent temperature is essential; otherwise, the fish’s labyrinth organ might get damaged from temperature differences.

For fish keepers hoping to encourage their fish to spawn, they need a water temperature of 800 Fahrenheit.

In terms of the water quality, this fish does best with a pH level between 6.0-8.8, and the water hardness needs to be between 5 and 35dGH.

Opaline gouramis grow between four to six inches in length. Therefore, this species needs a lot of space for swimming. Juvenile fish can live in 15-20 gallons per fish tank.

However, when the fish have reached adult size, they will need a minimum of 35 gallons per adult-sized fish.

Gourami has a labyrinth organ that helps them survive water without oxygen. Even though this fish is challenging and can tolerate less than ideal water, this doesn’t mean you should let the water become depleted.

Even though the fish can survive in water conditions other fish can’t, allowing for less experienced fishkeepers to have some leeway.

However, even with the Gouramis ability to survive, they will eventually suffer health problems if the water becomes and stays dirty.

For the long-term health of your fish, you should invest in an efficient filtration system. It is essential for the filtration system not to create strong currents. Strong currents will cause the Gouramis to be stressed.

Top Tip: In addition, the fish aquarium needs to have 25% changes every week.

Opaline gouramis will swim and explore all areas of the tanks. Therefore, it is better to have a more extended tank than a tall one. This is because the fish needs plenty of room for using its labyrinth organ to take breaths of air from the surface.

Creating the Landscape

The landscape of the tank should be done in such a way as to show off the fish’s color. For example, the substrate chosen should be dark to let the blues of the fish show off.

Opaline Gourami is not a particular shy fish, but they appreciate having a place to hide if they are feeling stressed or shy.

Some options people use involve live plants and premade caves.

Gouramis are an omnivore species; however, they typically won’t eat or mess with the plants in your tank. Instead, they enjoy exploring plants and swimming around stems and leaves.

Another option is floating plants; these will help by providing shade and other hiding places.

However, all plants need to be pruned; otherwise, your fish may not have enough room to swim around or have access to the surface of the water for using their labyrinth organ.

Best Plants: Long-stemmed aquatic plants and floating plants.
Best Lighting:Moderate to normal lighting.
Best Decorations:Plants and other places that offer hiding places for your fish.
Decorations to Avoid:Avoid decorations with sharp edges.

Physiological Considerations for Opaline Gourami

Size:  Adults are 4-6 Inches
Lifespan:Average lifespan is 4-6 years, possibly longer with perfect water conditions.
Temperament:They are a generally a peaceful fish unless the males are kept in close quarters without enough space.
Preferred Tank Region:They explore all areas of the tank.
Scale Thickness:Normal scale thickness.
Gill Considerations:No particular gill consideration.
Swimbladder Considerations:No swim bladder considerations.
Fin Shape Considerations:No specific fin shape considerations

As long as an Opaline Gourami isn’t born with defects and is kept in a tank with the correct water parameters, then it should have no health issues.

They live about four to six years, however, it is possible to have your fish live longer if you take care to make sure their tank and water are perfect.


Opaline Gourami together

While Gouramis, in general, are peaceful fish that make for excellent tankmates, Opaline Gourami has some issues with aggression.

The older members of this species can be aggressive towards small fish. Also, the males can be territorial if they are not given enough space to swim and make their territory.

Something else to consider is that individual fish have their temperament. For example, some Opaline Gourami is very peaceful and even shy in acting.

But, at the same time, some can be bullies that attack and harass smaller fish.

To help ensure harmony in your tank, it helps to have tankmates of similar sizes and temperaments. Make sure to avoid introducing any fish known to be nippers or small enough to be seen as prey to be attacked.

Some good companions for the fish include:

Gender, Breeding, and Reproductive Considerations

It is possible to have Opaline Gouramis breed at home. However, this is an involved project that requires preparation.

It’s not difficult to tell the two genders apart because the males have a longer and more pointed dorsal fin than the females.

Top Tip: This species builds bubble nests and is relatively easy to breed with the right tank conditions.

The fish need separate and shallow tanks for breeding. The water needs to be about five to six inches deep with a minimal current in their tanks.

The water needs to be kept around 80 F and enough surface area and plenty of plants to help keep the bubble nest in place.

When the tank is ready, introduce a healthy pair of adult fish and feed them small amounts of live and frozen food. This will help the female fish be prepared to spawn.

The male fish will build the bubble nest. Once the nest is finished, then the two fish will mate.

After the eggs are laid, you must remove the female. This is because the males are the ones who protect the eggs and have been known even to attack their mate if the male feels the eggs may be in any danger.

After the fry hatch, the male should be removed from the tank, and you should feed the fry a liquid food or infusoria until they are big enough to eat baby brine shrimp.

Nutritional Needs

small Opaline Gourami

Opaline Gourami is an omnivore willing to eat most anything fed to it. However, they do best with a balance of algae and protein snacks diet.

The easiest way to provide a good diet of nutrients is to use a commercial pellet or flake. With the right balanced formula, it can help with the color of the fish.

Several times a week, you should offer a high-protein snack to your fish. Good options include brine shrimp, white worms, and bloodworms.

Best Sustenance Food Type: A well-balanced pellet or flake food.
Additional Food For Optimal Health:A well-balanced diet
Special Foods and Considerations for Best Color and Growth:A well-balanced pellet or flake.
When and How Often to Feed Fish Based on Life Cycle:Feed the flake twice a day and protein snacks a few times a week.

Common Diseases and How to Avoid and Treat Them

The Opaline gourami is a hardy species that can remain healthy as long as they are in a carefully maintained tank. However, if the water quality is bad or the temperature is wrong, or the fish is given an inadequate diet, they will likely develop an illness.

The most common fish illnesses include:

  • Constipation
  • Bacterial infections
  • Ich

Constipation is easy to see because the fish have trouble swimming and lose an appetite. The condition is caused by a food blockage and can be fixed by holding off food for a couple of days and then feeding the fish shelled peas or live food.

Poor water conditions and poor diets most often cause bacterial infections. However, they can also occur because your fish’s immune system is weakened from prolonged stress.

Top Tip: Fixing this is easy with a combination of cleaning the water and administrating antibiotics.

Ich is a type of disease caused by a parasite. It is easy to see because of the white spots that appear on the fish’s body, and they will rub their bodies against hard surfaces to ease their irritation.

This can be fixed by cleaning the tank and completely changing water and over-the-counter medication.

Best Antibiotics: Unless advised by a vet use over the counter antibiotics.
Treatments to Avoid:N/A
Food Recommendations When Sick:Healthy diet of fresh food.
Hospital Tank or Isolation Withing the Community Tank:Hospital tank

Facts About Opaline Gourami

We hope you enjoyed this Opaline Gourami care guide! Here are few more facts about the fish species.

Opaline Gourami with grass
  1. This fish species tend to be peaceful, but the males can be very territorial.
  2. The opaline gourami grows to between four to six inches long and needs plenty of space to swim in.
  3. This species can change color during stress or in poor conditions, so that it may be for the wrong reason, and the water should be checked.

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