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FAQs on Colisa lalia "Dwarf" Gouramis of Many Names, Honey, Flames, Neon Blue,  Sunset Fire... Identification

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Related FAQs:  Dwarf Gouramis, Dwarf Gourami Behavior, Dwarf Gourami Compatibility, Dwarf Gourami Selection, Dwarf Gourami Systems, Dwarf Gourami Feeding, Dwarf Gourami Disease, Dwarf Gourami Reproduction, & FAQs on: Gouramis 1, Gouramis 2, Gourami Identification, Gourami Behavior, Gourami Compatibility, Gourami Selection, Gourami Systems, Gourami Feeding, Gourami Disease, Gourami Reproduction, Betta splendens/Siamese Fighting Fish,

There is another commonly offered "Dwarf Gourami" species, the Honey Dwarf Gourami, Colisa chuna... See WWM, Fishbase.org re.

gold dwarf flame gouramis, sp. ID   6/19/10
Hello WWM crew,
I've been searching the web for pictures of my gouramis, gold dwarf flame gouramis. All that I can find are honey gouramis. The fish that I have are much more "golden" than honey gouramis, plus the anal and caudal fins are
orangish-red. I live in Hawaii where I know we get a lot of fish from breeders over in Asia. Could this be a hybrid of some sorts.
<Very likely. The two species of note here are Colisa lalia (the Dwarf Gourami) and Colisa chuna (the Honey Gourami). These two species have both been bred into artificial forms different to the wild types, and they have
also been hybridised to produce fish with characteristics of both. Neither is a "hardy" fish by any objective standards, and the Dwarf Gourami especially is notorious for being disease-prone, both because of its sensitivity to Mycobacteria infections and the prevalence of an Iridovirus infection among farmed specimens. Neither deserves a place in the average community tank, to be honest. There are two other species of note, Colisa fasciata (the Banded Gourami) and Colisa labiosa (the Thick-lipped Gourami) that are a bit larger but dramatically easier to maintain. Both of these are available in wild-type colours and in uniformly orange or yellowy types as well.>
They are very small for gouramis, even for the dwarf species (I would put them just under an inch).
<If adult these are smaller than Colisa species; to look at Trichopsis species as well, e.g., Trichopsis pumila.>
They are a very hardy fish a have gone through a lot with me, they've been move from one tank to another (progressively bigger), and survived an outbreak of ich in my tank (didn't "catch" it). I would like to get one or
two more, but with out finding any online, I'm afraid that I won't be able to.
<Without a photo, I really can't say anything helpful.>
Much thanks for any info. about them.
<Cheers, Neale.>
P.S. Am I the only lucky guy around who doesn't have problems with their aquarium, I don't check my Ph, or hardness, ammonia or nitrite levels. All I do is ten to twenty percent water change every week, and fifty percent
<Indeed, you sound very lucky. But I can't recommend this approach at all, as the number of sick fish -- especially sick gouramis! -- will testify. To be sure, if the tank is well-filtered and your tap water happens to be ideal for the species, then water tests may well be redundant. But for most aquarists, at least determining their water chemistry first, so they can choose the right fish, and then using nitrite tests during the cycling phase, are important. Had your water chemistry been wrong, doubtless you'd have lost more fish.>

Poorly Gourami (Red Robins; taxonomy, health)   2/11/09 Hello Crew! I've had a look all over the internet and at your recently answered question but haven't found anything that really applies to the problem my Gourami has, so i hope you don't mind me emailing! He's is a 'red robin' honey Gourami who i have had for about 6 months and always been well. Yesterday i came home to find him sitting at the bottom of the tank with a slightly rounded underside - just around where i assume his swim bladder is, at the base of his feelers. He was moved about a week ago from my previous 30 litre tank to a new 120 litre. I have given the tank a water change and the water results are still within the normal parameters (I'm going to test again this evening). I've also put some peeled peas into the tank but he doesn't seem to be interested in them. He is currently sitting at the bottom of the tank and taking the occasional trip to the surface for a quick gulp of air, then sinking slowly back to the bottom. Also, when he's swimming he seems to be finding it difficult and his lips look a bit greyer than usual. The only other thing apart from the new tank, that has changed, is that i bought 3 small Corys at the weekend, one of which died within 48 hours after barely moving. My second honey Gourami is still behaving absolutely normal and the 2 remaining Corys are perfectly fine. Can you give me any advice? Should i quarantine him? I've also been reading about some antibiotics that aren't compatible with gouramis and others that shouldn't be used when Corys are in the tank! Any info you could send would be great - i can't get to my local fish shop until tomorrow evening. Many thanks for your time Jess <Hello Jess. Red Robin Gouramis are curious fish because nobody really knows what they are! Several different fish are sold under the name, most commonly a hybrid between Trichogaster chuna and Colisa lalia, often, though not always, fed with colour-enhancing foods to make their colours brighter than they actually are. Quality is extremely variable, and like a lot of fish mass produced in Southeast Asia, bacterial infections can be a real problem because of the widespread use of antibiotics on the fish farms. Whilst they don't seem to get the dreaded Dwarf Gourami Iridovirus (DGIV) they aren't the hardiest of fish and lifespan is often rather short. Sometimes Red Robins are merely red-coloured Colisa lalia, in which case DGIV is a risk, as well as all the usual bacterial problems Dwarf Gouramis are prone to. Inbreeding is an issue here, and indeed with almost any fish that doesn't have its wild-type colouration. That's a point worth reiterating: when you shop for tropical fish and you decide to get a "fancy" form, you're doing a trade-off between genetics and physical appearance. Finally, some Red Robins are fancy Honey Gouramis. Again, inbreeding is an issue, but on top of that you have the problem that Trichogaster chuna is simply not a fish that does well in hard water, so unless you have soft, slightly acidic water conditions, it's a species to avoid. Having laid out the problems identifying the fish, treatment is somewhat difficult to suggest. DGIV is impossible to cure, so if that's the case, there's nothing much to do beyond painless destruction of the fish. Internal bacterial infections are extremely common among these fish, and only reliably treated with antibiotics. In the UK, these have to be obtained from a vet, and the so-called "anti-internal bacteria" treatments sold in fish shops in the UK are, frankly, useless. Never once heard of a fish cured of anything by using them. Antibiotics used properly (i.e., as per your vet's instructions) will be perfectly safe with your Gourami. Internal bacterial infections often caused abdominal swelling followed by distinctive raising of the scales along the flank, so that viewed from above the fish looks like a pine cone. At that stage a cure is unlikely and again, painless destruction is the only humane option. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/euthanasia.htm Constipation is a problem with Gouramis since most are partially herbivorous in the wild, and careless aquarists often forget this essential fact. If squashed tinned (or cooked) peas aren't accepted, then Daphnia may be, and these are almost as good. Obviously Gouramis are slow feeders, and if there are tetras or barbs in there, the Daphnia will be eaten long before the Gourami gets a therapeutic "dose", so you'll have to work around that using a hospital tank of some sort. If the Gourami is healthy-looking apart from the swollen abdomen, then constipation may be the issue. Adding Epsom salt at 1 to 3 teaspoons per 5 gallons can help with constipation alongside the high-fibre foods, but remember to stop adding Epsom salt once the fish is better. Hope this helps, Neale.>

Honey Gourami ID  10/17/08 Hello Crew, I had read great things about the Honey Gourami: small, peaceful, reasonably hardy, and beautiful, so when I came across these at the LFS, I sort of impulse bought this pair of fish. They were labeled as 'Honey Gourami, Colisa sota, but after bringing them home and doing some more research, I don't think these are really Honey Gouramis. I read on WWM and other sites that these bright red fish may be hybrids or sports of another species. <Indeed; suspect that is the case here. In any event, not a "wild-type" fish of any species. Not pure Dwarf Gourami (Colisa lalia) or Honey Gourami (Trichogaster chuna) either. There are fish sold as "red honey Gouramis" and these are of unknown genetics and maybe even different fish in different countries.> I've compared my fish to pictures of C. lalia, fasciata, labiosa, and sota, and they look close but not exact. <Agreed, certainly not the wild-type of any of them. They have a too-long body (to my eyes) to be Colisa lalia or Trichogaster chuna. Actually look like some sort of hybrid with Colisa fasciata because of the length of the body.> My questions are: What species are they? Are these hybrids? Will hybrids reproduce? <Some hybrids will breed without problems. It's a case of "try it and see".> One has a pointed spear-shaped dorsal tip, and the other's is shorter and rounded. However, looking at them with a light behind, they both have identically shaped viscera and swim bladders (at least to my eyes, and I don't really know what to look for). How are they sexed? <Likely the one with longer fins is the male.> Do I have a pair? Are females generally not sold/available? <In some markets (e.g., the US) female Dwarf Gouramis aren't sold, but certainly here in England male and female Gouramis of all types are available.> Their color did not fade in the bag on the way home, nor in the white bucket that I put them in to acclimate. They remain as bright red as they were at the LFS. Does that mean they are artificially colored? <May be enhanced somewhat by using colour-enhancing food, but the basic colouration has been bred into them.> I hope I didn't buy injected, dipped or otherwise dyed fish. <Nope.> Thank you, Nathan <Cheers, Neale.>

LFS? Better Explain the Acronym! Why we Can't Breed Powder Blue Gouramis Thanks for the answer on Rams. What is the LFS? Also I do have another question. How do you know the sex differences in the powder blue dwarf Gourami? Hope to hear from you again! Karrie <LFS refers to local fish store. Powder Blue Dwarf Gouramis are a line bred fish. They are simply regular dwarf Gouramis with all the red bred out of them. I don't think they export females, but I am sure that they would breed with a normal silver colored female dwarf Gourami.-Chuck> 

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