Trichogaster genus contains many of the more popular gouramis traded in the industry, including the “Pearl gourami”, “Moonlight”, “Snake skid”, “Three spot”, “Blue”, “Silver”, “Gold”, “Opaline” and hybrids in the same genus.
All gouramis belong to the suborder Anabantoidei and are commonly known as the labyrinth fishes. These fish are characterized primarily by an accessory breathing organ called the labyrinth organ. The labyrinth organ is located next to the gill cavities and is made up of folded membranes mounted on a bony frame. The delicate tissue has a high concentration of blood vessels and functions much like a terrestrial lung. If a labyrinth fish is denied access to the air it will drown because the gills alone will not provide sufficient oxygen to the fish.
Trichogaster lalius (Dwarf Gourami), do not appreciate fast-moving or turbulent water. Try to keep flow to a minimum in any set-up containing them. They do best in a heavily-planted tank with plenty of shade and hiding places. The addition of a dark substrate and floating vegetation is also recommended to calm these essentially shy fish. The addition of some twigs, branches and leaf litter could make for a very natural-looking set-up.
That said, the modern tank-bred fish are fairly adaptable and can thrive in most well-maintained aquaria, provided they have sufficient hiding places and shady areas. These are important to provide refuges for the female in the face of male harassment, also in a sparsely decorated tank the species becomes shy and withdrawn much more easily.
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