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

Related Articles: Anabantoids/Gouramis & Relatives, Genera Ctenopoma & Microctenopoma, Betta splendens/Siamese Fighting Fish

Related FAQs:  Dwarf Gouramis, Dwarf Gourami Identification, Dwarf Gourami Behavior, Dwarf Gourami Compatibility, Dwarf Gourami Selection, Dwarf Gourami Systems, Dwarf Gourami Feeding, Dwarf Gourami Disease, & 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,

Female Colisa don't have much color at all... unless they've been "juice"... treated with liquid hormones to "color them up"... temporarily

Hi Bob... you've been recommended to help me sex my guormi :-)       5/3/17
had conflicting advice so far. Hope you can help :-)
<Appears to be a male below left and two females above. Bob Fenner>

re: Sexing Colisa       5/4/17
Thanks very much bob :-) I know who's the real fish expert now and it's not this guy on fish forum lol
<Mmm; is just a considered guess Gemma. BobF>

Re: Gourami breeding and uh oh, eggs are laid., now C. lalia 4/8/12
Hola hermanos!
<Hello to you, too.>
It really is spring. My Colisa lalia (dwarf gouramis) have shown the signs.
I have decided to outfit my turtle a 60 gal Tupperware bin that is his temporary summer condo (it's long so allows for plenty swimming room but not big enough to accommodate winter warmth). I will use his winter tank to store the mother blue gourami as well as my <1 in African Leaf Fish and a little later, my mother dwarf gourami while all of my breeding is going on. Once things calm down I will place my refugees back in their homes. Thank you for the website!
<Most welcome.>
After about 50 or so sites in two days the egg yolk trick had NOT been mentioned. Having Easter two days away that is an easy lifesaver. As I stated we have plentiful algae and hopefully some infusoria as well. Well, it's time to apply what I have learned and work on rearing these fry as best I can. Thank you to those who contribute to my most trusted fish/reptile source.
<And thanks for the kind words.>
<Cheers, Neale.>

Dwarf gourami spawning     1/24/12
Hi there!    My dwarf gourami have spawned about 3 times now with me witnessing the release of eggs each time.
But every time, 12-24 hours later, none of the eggs have hatched and the male continues repairing the nest and guarding it. In fact his nest never seems to disappear, its always there! What could be going wrong? Thanks,
<The male could be sterile, there could be some adverse condition about the system (cold drafts are especially problematical... Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/dwfgrepro.htm
and in books... there are several good accounts of Colisa lalia repro./breeding about. Bob Fenner>
Re: dwarf gourami spawning     1/24/12

Hi again.   Just another thing, his bubble nest is an absolute mess of plants that have attracted some snails. I have quite a lot of Malaysian trumpet snails, Ramshorn and maybe also pond snails too. Are these likely to eat the eggs or are they just trying to get at the plants? Thanks,
<They might eat both. B>
Re: Dwarf gourami spawning   1/25/12

Oh no, I hope he isn't sterile. What usually makes them sterile? Hormone injections to increase colour intensity?
<Ah yes; this and purposely elevated temperature, exposure to certain compounds...>

 If I bought 1 sterile male from a certain shop, is it a safe bet that all of their male DGs would be sterile too?
In regards to drafts, I was under the impression that drafts were only a danger to the fry after they hatched. If this is not the case, I have an old bath towel I can place over the top of the tank. Would this suffice?
<Better something solid... like a sheet of acrylic, glass>
And would drafts effect the eggs/fry even in a very hot dry summer much like the one we are experiencing right now here in Australia?
<Can, yes>
 Thanks again for all your advice. Jason.
<Welcome. BobF>

help dwarf Gourami fry is not himself today   7/19/11
hi I have been raising my girlfriends dwarf Gourami babies, my first batch had a massive die off and none of them survived, however this second batch of (more eggs) only left me with two viable babies, one super small one and one that is 10xbigger. idk why, maybe its a good eater than the other one. the tank water have lots of microorganisms it could eat.
<Of what nature? How produced?>
they also eat the powdered fry food. and now I am feeding it brine shrimp.
I have uploaded a video of him last night on Facebook, embed code:
<object width="400" height="300" ><param name="allowfullscreen"value="true" /><param name="movie" value="http://www.facebook.com/v/244901518862111" /><embed src="http://www.facebook.com/v/244901518862111" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" width="400"height="300"></embed></object> 
so you see he seems fine last night. however on my first batch, the  massive
die off didn't start until I fed them brine shrimp which they were already more than 3wks old,
<Need to be much older than this... use MUCH smaller foods at this stage; guard against drafts (at the surface...)>
it could be due to the introduction of the brine and it decaying at the bottom, I think the same is happening now :( some salt is introduced to the tank, until I figured a way to filter it.
<The nauplii need to be freshwater rinsed... in a (white) fine "brine shrimp" net, ahead of feeding>
he didn't seem to mind the plume of salt during feedings but since being able to filter, im able to feed it more. it ate a lot last night. could I have overfed? his belly is a lot smaller this morning tho.
I don't have any tests to see if I have anything wrong, but I do have a ph test. it is around 6.8-7.2 I have a hard time telling the reading from the color in the test-tube.
I woke up at 7 turned on the lights and tried to feed it earlier than usual and I noticed it bumping into things and not eating as voraciously as last night, its always been on a certain side of the tank and this morning its in a different spot somewhere in the middle of the tank, and very rarely do I catch it get close to the tank for me to observe and today its doing that.
I've started to feed him brine just two days ago. it is in a small 2.5 tank
with a bubbler, and I've just recently put a sponge filter. before doing this I siphoned the gravel for the first time in a long time (2months) and got a lot of mulm. I may have forced the tank into a mini cycle for getting most of it. I just made a 2quart water change and will keep on doing it today.
it does have a heater so I usually do water changes slow. im afraid the fry is dying, it isn't going on its side or spinning its just bumping into things, yawning and swimming at the top which I've never seen it do and everything else I've mentioned.
I hope im just freaking out cause its behaviour is changing cause its 'growing'. it just started to grow its feelers, they were short yesterday and had gotten 2x long today. maybe I woke up too early, fed it too early, it may be just still sleeping.... it just concerned me how its acting  today.
I hate that my problem is that I don't know what's going on cause I cant test my water, all I know is that its been cycled, and it might be going on a mini cycle.
<ALL new/change out water NEEDS to be pre-made, cycled in another system... matching the culture water's parameters>
I've only started to complete the set, and I started with the ph test which I suspected my goldfish tank had swings of it the past week. the only thing I can grab is the ammonia kit (small box) our PetSmart doesn't have the whole kit in stock, even if they did I don't have the money for it so im getting it one by one which will cost me more but, its all I can afford at once.
<... you should spend some of your time going to the local library, even reading on the Net re Colisa culture>
if the tank is going in a mini cycle, what more can I do besides water changes?
<Also posted>
the heater is at preset 75deg, should I get one that's preset to 78?
<Even higher...>
its really hard for me to do water changes on that tank without temp swings, that I've started to do it in quarts or cups at a time. right now its gotten a little cooler from the 2quart change I did.
<... Temperature can be and needs to be matched almost exactly, if not using water a bit warmer>
anyway, thank you so much, this is the first time im writing you guys, I've always come to this site on my phone mostly to do some reading at night since im always concerned about my fish.
I forgot to mention the fry tank is a 2.5 with lots of Anacharis and snails, it may also be overrun by snails so im gonna try to get most of them today on top of water changes. again thank you. I hope the video worked for you guys so you can best tell me what could be happening. I apologize I couldn't
give test result. I really hope the guy is just sleepy and not dying :( I have turned off the lights and I will check on it later. I also apologize for babbling on... im just so concerned :(
<Do take a read, and Dewey search re Colisa reproduction... You're making some serious/fatal mistakes here in feeding, system maintenance. Bob Fenner>

Dwarf Gourami... repro.  2/4/2010
Hi, I hope you can help, I have just purchase 2 dwarf Gourami's Male & Female, the female is pregnant
<They don't get pregnant. Who told you this?>
(According to supplier a Reputable one as well)
<Reputable perhaps, but not especially knowledgeable. Like the majority of fish Dwarf Gouramis are egg-layers. Females may look a little plump just before spawning, but within a couple of days they'll go back to normal
because they will have laid their eggs. By then, the male will be guarding the eggs in a bubblenest. He will drive the female away -- aggressively -- during this phase, so usually spawning is performed in a separate tank, and
the female put back in the community tank while the male is left with the nest.>
What do I do next? I have put them in a large breeding net tank together within my 110 litre tank.
<Nope. Don't do this. Wait for the male to form a bubblenest under some floating plants, e.g., Indian Fern. Allow the female to approach the male in her own time. Remove the female after spawning to the main aquarium.
Under no circumstances coop them up together! When males are guarding their nests, they are VERY aggressive and can damage the females, who they view (correctly) as a threat. The females have no maternal instinct at all,
since they're not involved with brood rearing.>
Your expertise would be greatly appreciated.
<To be honest, I doubt this is a gravid female. Much more likely to be one of many diseases for which this species, Colisa lalia, is notorious. The quality of the stock in the trade isn't high to begin with, and on top of that many people ignore the needs of this species for very warm, soft, acidic water. Do read here:
Saves me typing all this stuff out again and again! As you'll see, we get a LOT of sick Gourami messages. They are a species is strongly advise people not to buy, unless locally bred.>
Kind regards
<Cheers, Neale.>

Gourami disease, eggs?  -03/28/08 hi, I have just got 4 dwarf Gouramis and 2 are the opalescent blue and the other 2 are orange with stripes. my one striped one has a dark brown appearance on its head and at the top to,? and appears to be dull and slimy. and the other one appears to have this too along with a dark blue almost navy stripe near the end of its belly. is this normal or a disease. <Not normal, and yes, likely a disease. In particular check your symptoms against 'Dwarf Gourami Disease', an extremely common and contagious problem among Colisa lalia imports from Singapore especially. There is no cure. I would simply advise people NEVER to buy these fish unless from a local breeder.> and finally the last question I have is my blue Gourami is larger than the rest of the tank mates and has been hanging out at the top of the tank. but I have noticed very small,? white circular things near my heater and every now and then the swollen fish will go up near that part of the tank. what is wrong with my fish and what are these things, are they eggs? <Impossible to say. Quite possibly eggs, through whether from the Gouramis or something else, e.g., snails, is difficult to say. Gouramis are bubble-nest builders and don't normally stick their eggs to the glass. On the other hand Corydoras catfish and some snails do this all the time. If you think they're eggs, then by all means carefully remove them to a breeding trap and see what happens! Fish eggs tend to be about 1 mm across and small round spheres; snail eggs are usually laid in clumps, often in blobs of jelly about 5 mm or so across.> thank you <Next time, please send messages with proper capitalization of sentences! Makes e-mails easier to read, share. Cheers, Neale.>

Dwarf Gourami, Spawning, and Disease - 10/06/2007 Hi, I have a pair of dwarf gouramis in a 260L tank which has been set up for about 3 months with no problems. About 2 weeks ago the pair had a failed breeding attempt (all the eggs got eaten) and since then the male has not eaten, he hides in the top corner of the tank, hardly moving and his feelers have started to disintegrate, they are now only about a third of their original length. Advice would be greatly appreciated as I am going on holiday next week and wondering whether his illness could be treated before then or if it likely to spread to other tank inhabitants: pearl gouramis Columbian tetras, clown loaches, rainbow fish, algae eaters, silver sharks. Thanks Gayle <Gayle, while it is possible that your gourami has Finrot (in which case treat for Finrot using some appropriate medication such as Mardel Maracyn or eSHa 2000), the odds are 9 to 10 that your fish has Dwarf Gourami Disease (DGD). This starts off with lethargy and shyness, then loss of appetite, then blisters or sores on the body, and then death. There is no cure, and the best you can do is isolate the fish, provide optimal water conditions, and hope for the best. If the fish doesn't improve, then painlessly destroy it. DGD is apparently caused by a virus, so antibiotics do not help. DGD is practically ubiquitous in shipments of Dwarf Gouramis from Southeast Asia. One scientific study found almost 1 in 4 Dwarf Gouramis were infected with it. It is also EXTREMELY contagious, and as soon as one fish dies, the disease WILL spread, so that the entire batch of fish will be infected. For this reason, I personally recommend people NEVER buy Dwarf Gouramis from anywhere other than a local breeder. Truly, it just isn't worth it. If you want to keep a small gourami, skip Dwarf Gouramis (and their hybrids and variants, such as neon, robin, and sunset gouramis). Instead go for Colisa labiosus and Colisa fasciata (Thick-lipped Gourami and Banded Gourami respectively). These fish are similar but not affected by the disease. Your female gourami is, more than likely, infected and so doomed unless you separate the fish immediately and are extremely lucky. But the other fishes (including the pearl gouramis) should be fine. There's no sign that DGD spreads to fishes other than Dwarf Gouramis. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, Neale>

Pregnant Honey Gourami?  8/13/07 I think one of my honey gouramis may be pregnant. I noticed this morning she (I am now assuming she's a she) is quite bulbous around the middle - about twice as wide as the other. And she is spending most of her time hiding in the cave, which is unusual for her. Is there any other condition that would cause this? I'm assuming she didn't go on an eating binge and double her girth over night as her mother has been known to do. So if she is preggers, what do I do? I don't know if my other gourami is a male (didn't check under the hood), and there is no bubble nest that I can see. He wouldn't build it in the cave, would he? Would she even be producing eggs in the absence of a male? The surface of the water is pretty active between the aerator and the filter. There are lots of live plants, but not much at surface level (don't they build their nests on the surface?). What will happen if I leave her in there and there is no nest for her? Will she just lay the eggs anyway? And then of course, if there is no male, they won't hatch. Should I go to the trouble of setting up a breeder tank? But not knowing if my other is a male may make the whole effort futile. I'm a novice aquarist, and while I thought perhaps one day of breeding, I didn't think it would be this soon. Am I ready for that sort of responsibility? What about all the plans I had for the future? <somebody slap me!> Witnessing the miracle of life is intriguing, but, like every new parent, I don't want to screw up. BTW - what are we talking about as far as gestation? How long before she lays her eggs? Thanks! -Grandmom-to-be? <Greetings. Gouramis are egg-layers. They don't "get pregnant". While females can appear swollen when ready to lay eggs, in general they only come into "condition" (as this is called) when kept with a male, and almost always when pampered as well by being given a diet rich in live foods. Fish don't have a menstrual cycle, and the females only ovulate when conditions warrant it. This is why aquarists need to go through the conditioning process to get egg-laying species at least ready to breed. Sexing honey gouramis outside of spawning is basically impossible. When spawning, the male develops a black breast area and is obviously different to the female. Now, honey gouramis (Trichogaster chuna) are not the easiest fish to keep, and are prone to a variety of bacterial infections. They aren't so bad as dwarf gouramis (Colisa lalia) but in anything other than very warm, very soft, and quite acidic water they come under the heading of "delicate". In other words, rather than being pregnant, it is entirely possible your fish is sick and the abdominal swelling is related to oedema or some other type of internal damage. The reason I mention this is that hiding away is a classic sign of bacterial infection in many fish. If she's off her food as well, then I'd be 100% sure about this diagnosis. Treating bacterial infections in (small) fishes is down to one simple rule: treat early if you want any hope of success. Once the damage is done, there's almost no hope of recovery. Depending on where you are, you will have a variety of anti-bacterial and/or antibiotic medications you can use. None are terribly effective unless the fish is treated at once. If the fish is still eating, you have hope; if the fish is off its food, don't expect much. With honey gouramis, the critical thing is not to mix them in a community tank. They're not community fish; they are far too delicate and prone to diseases carried by hardier fish species. They need their own tank, maintained at about 26-28C, pH 6-6.5, and soft to moderately hard water. You can mix them with other small, peaceful fish that inhabit similar conditions, such as rasboras or cardinal tetras, but don't mix them with any other kind of gourami and certainly not with dwarf cichlids, nippy barbs, etc. Hope this helps, Neale>

Re: Pregnant Gourami?  8/13/07 Never mind. "Pregnant" fish + bulging eyes + pineconed scales = dropsy. Treated with Maracyn 2 and keeping our fins crossed. Thanks anyway! <Ah, you just beat me. Sent off a reply already, suggesting much the same thing! Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Pregnant Gourami?  8/13/07 Sorry to be a pest, here, but I'm a tad upset when faced with the imminent(?) loss of my first fish. I understand dropsy is a symptom of an infection. What I want to know is how to prevent it from happening again. I don't think I have any problems with my water quality - nitrites 0; nitrates 20; ph 6.8. The temp is pretty consistent at about 78 degrees. My water is hard and my alkalinity low - could this be a problem? I do weekly water changes of about 25%. I have 2 honey gouramis, 2 paradise gouramis, 1 female beta, and 3 Chinese algae eaters (which will be going to a good home very soon as they're getting somewhat aggressive) in a 29 gallon, heavily planted tank. What can I do to prevent future problems with dropsy? Thanks so much! Your site has been a wonderful resource for this newbie! Stephanie <Hello Stephanie. There are two rules to avoiding sick fish. The first is to choose fishes suited to your tank and experience level. If you're a newbie, far better to choose a robust, reliable gourami like banded gourami (Colisa fasciata) or thick-lipped gourami (Colisa labiosus) than to go with one of the terribly sickly dwarf gourami varieties or the delicate honey gourami. While the gouramis I mention might not be as colourful as some of the others, they're still very nice fish, and can be relied upon to live for 5 to 7 years without much risk. The second rule is to quarantine new fish. Realistically, newbie aquarists almost never do this, and a lot of experienced hobbyists don't, either. But the bottom line is that if you can do this, life becomes simpler, because you can observe new fish and treat them quickly if required. Anyway, for the most part your livestock is not unreasonable. The Chinese algae eaters are, as you say, aggressive. I have no idea why they are traded at all, but there you go. The paradise gouramis are, I assume, the Paradisefish Macropodus opercularis. These are very tough, though sometimes snappy animals. I'd not keep them with honey gouramis, ever. They're actually subtropical fish, and their ideal tankmates would be fishes that like water a little cooler than normal, say, 22-24C. Peppered and bearded Corydoras, Danios, White Cloud Mountain minnows, golden barbs, rosy barbs, Variatus platies, etc... that sort of thing. (Although not widely understood in the hobby, there is a middle ground between tropical and coldwater fish, subtropical fish; ironically, goldfish are subtropical fish and can actually work rather well with some of the fishes I just mentioned.) Female bettas are fun little creatures, but I fear male Paradisefish will hammer them once the Paradisefish mature. This may all sound rather disillusioning, since it seems sometimes that tropical fish shops will sell anything to anyone, regardless of how easy or not said fish are to keep. But once you get the hang of things, choosing the "right" fish isn't that difficult. And once you have the right fish, disease stops being a problem. Fishes are basically hardy animals, and you can easily go years without having to treat them. Cheers, Neale>

Re: Pregnant Gourami?  8/13/07 Wow, thanks for the info and the quick reply. I didn't know that about honey gouramis. And here I thought I was doing good by buying at a small, privately owned specialty aquarium store rather than a big pet store. But they never told me not to put this species in a community tank. <To be fair, not every aquarium shop is expert in every species. In many cases, they have a fair idea about what sells well and seems not to get complaints from customers. Often, the owner will be an expert in one particular field, the fish he or she keeps at home. If that field is, say, African cichlids, you can't expect great advice about South American catfish. That's why buying/borrowing books is so important. Even reading through one or two issues of a fishkeeping magazine can help, because it's like a booster shot of fishkeeping lore, and helps you understand at least some of the things you need to think about.> Should I consider setting up a separate tank and moving them? <The honey gouramis and female bettas would get along fine in a 10-20 gallon tank, with a sponge filter, heating, and lots of floating plants. That's all they'd need really. Keeping them together would certainly reduce the risk of trouble in the long term.> What tank mates would be suitable with my 2 paradise gourami and female betta? <Paradisefish can be kept with all sorts of robust, active fishes. Paradisefish are "semi-aggressive" and while lovely fish, you don't want to keep them with anything slow moving or delicate. On the other hand, you don't want to keep them with anything nippy, either (so no tiger barbs, black widow tetras, or pufferfish). I'd probably go with a danio species for the top of the tank, and one of the subtropical Corydoras for the bottom. You can then add some more challenging species in due course.> I've already crossed the dwarf gourami off my list (thanks for the heads up). I want to stick with labyrinth fish, and figured gouramis are my best bet. Would most other gourami varieties work? <Not really, no. The exceptions might be three-spot gouramis (the males of which are pretty mean themselves) and the more robust Climbing Perch (Anabas and Ctenopoma spp.). There are also other species of Macropodus, including the lovely "black" Paradisefish Macropodus concolor. Be sure and look out for one of the several excellent labyrinth fish books. They are a fascinating group of fishes, and well worth exploring.> I'm still holding out hope for my sick girl, though I know the chances are slim. She also has what appears to be a very small bit of ich on her head (but nowhere else) which I treated this morning. <Well, fingers crossed.> Thanks again for all the help! -s <No probs. Neale>

Re: Sick fish?? Breeding Colisa  - 7/23/07 Thank you so much for the advise......unfortunately my platy died, but i now know for future reference. (hopefully it will not happen again) <Too bad.> I want to know about breeding my dwarf flame Gourami. Can a breed him with a blue dwarf...or must they be the same color? I've searched the web, but all i find is steps on 'how to breed' <Colour is immaterial, as all the dwarf gouramis are the same species, Colisa lalia. Some may be hybrids though, as some varieties seem to be crosses between C. lalia and C. chuna (the honey Gourami). Because of this fertility may be low or non-existent in some specimens. In other words, while it should work out, you might have to experiment a bit. Breeding this species isn't difficult, but do have a second tank for the female, or she'll be pecked to death after spawning. The males of this species (and indeed most other labyrinth fish) are very aggressive when guarding the eggs. Cheers, Neale>

Gourami Bubble Nest Hi Bob, I've got a 6-week old 29 gallon tank that has cycled successfully with Bio-Spira. So far it's had only two inhabitants, a neon blue dwarf gourami and a female Betta, who have been cohabitating nicely. Although Mr. Gourami likes to show her who's boss by turfing her around a bit, Miss Betta seems ok with it. Just today gourami has built himself a bubble nest and is definitely acting hormonal!   <Yikes... well, they are closely related...> More aggressive, jumping out of the water, things like that. Here's my two questions: since bettas and gouramis are both labyrinth bubble-makers, is this going to confuse them?  <Apparently so> Any chance he might get more aggressive with her to get her to mate, after all she's the only girl in town, AND she sucks air!  Just want to make sure she'll be safe. <Me too... all should be fine though> Also, I'm assuming that while he's doing this and guarding his creation this is probably not the best time to add new fish....yes? I was planning this weekend to add some Cory cats and a couple more female bettas?  Would this bother Mr. Boss-man while he's busy trying to procreate? Thanks for your advice.... Leslie <Actually... adding these other fishes my be a good idea... help diffuse, defuse Mr. G's amorous attentions... Bob Fenner>

My gourami fish Hi the other day I purchased two flame gouramis from my local pet store. Can you please answer the following questions for me?  How can I tell which one is a male or female? <Males are a bit larger, much more colorful, with unpaired fins that will be a bit longer, more pointed... they act a bit more aggressively than females... have the folks at the store where you shop show you these differences. Very often folks just get/have males with no females...> How can I get them two [sic] breed? <A bit involved, and best searched on the Net... under the terms "gourami breeding"... elevated temperature, a covered system (to prevent drafts... damage to young labyrinth organs, conditioning of adult breeders, their separation, joining... preparation of foods for the fry...> What other gouramis go good with them? <Other small Colisa, Trichogaster species> Which is the easiest gourami to breed? <Mmm, likely Macropodus species, Paradisefishes.  Bob Fenner>

Dwarf Gourami - Male or Female?  Pregnant? Hello, <Hi!> I'm an extremely concerned parent of a beautiful cinnamon dwarf Gourami that I do not know the gender of. The sign at the pet store said it was a male, and I have also read that females will appear silver in color. <Less red, at the least.  Males are far easier to find in our hobby.> Mine is fully cinnamon. <Heh, that's my favorite word for the day, now!> But yet it has a bloated belly. It has increased in size each day, which a normal parent would think it was pregnant, correct? <Actually, there can be other causes for this.  First and foremost, overeating, and also very likely, constipation.> (Should I put it on birth control?) ;) <He/she needs a stern talking to, at the least!  :) > I was hoping that it was female and pregnant because I wanted little grandchildren of my own. <Well, even if he is a she, and is full of eggs, he/she/it would still need a male to help release, then fertilize, the eggs of this bubblenesting fish.> Please help me. This is a serious issue. <It is, indeed.  Is he/she pooping?  If not, you're probably looking at constipation.  I would recommend reducing the amount that you feed him/her; fast him for a few days, and feed only foods high in roughage content, like thawed frozen pea (squeeze it out of the shell), adult brine shrimp, or daphnia, and when you do feed these, do so sparingly.  It would also help to add Epsom salt to the tank, at a rate of one tablespoon per ten gallons - this is usually the first thing to do in constipation cases, as it can be very serious indeed, and it will help relieve pressure on the fish, and help pass any blockage in the gut.  I would also recommend increasing the veggie matter in your little pal's diet once this has passed.  Blanched zucchini, cucumber, and spinach are just a few goodies to pass along to him.  Or her.> I've included a picture of my little SPECIAL BOY (or girl)!. Please get back to me on the gender please. <A good picture, but is there any way you can get one of him with his fins very spread?  It does look like a male, to me, for the coloration and the point of his dorsal fin.  If he is a she, and he/she is with egg, you should see a white "dot" in front of the anal fin indicating that she is full of eggs.> Thanks,  Amy and Belle Gourami :) <You bet!  Wishing you and Belle well,  -Sabrina

Gourami Fry with White Spot Hi, I really hope u can help, I have 60 dwarf Gourami fry 10 days old. They have been infected with white spot disease from my other tank which is being treated successfully but what about my poor fry, some are dying.  Is normal treatment to harsh and will aquarium salt help? thank you for any response Sophia <Morning Sophia.  I checked with Bob on this one, regular Ich meds would be too harsh for these little guys.  Try slowly raising the temperature up to around 85.  The elevated temperature alone should do the trick.  Best of luck, Gage> Gage here, just drinkin, dreamin, and answerin emails. <Sounds familiar>   I was wondering if I could enlist your help in a couple of matters, and was hoping that this would not get posted on the daily's.  I've got a couple of emails in my box that I am not sure about. <Okay.> First off is regarding Gourami Fry with Ich.  Will a regular dose of meds kill the youngans?  I was thinking maybe a half dose, and some aquarium salt? <Better to use/suggest elevated temperature (about 85 F.) alone... sans med.s. The higher average kinetic energy will do the trick.>

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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