Gourami getting along in groups
I love the look of the gouramis. I just can't help it :lol:
I initially wanted to add one angelfish to our tank, but the gal at Petsmart talked me out of it, saying it would be too aggressive towards the other fish we have. Of course now I'm not worried about the aggression of an angelfish now that I have a little fin-nipping tetra on my hands, but anyway... I now have two dwarf gouramis instead. They are beautiful, but they stick close to the bottom of the tank and are extremely shy. This isn't a problem for me, but more than I worry about them not being happy. I hope they are just still adjusting to their new home. But now that I have them, I love them even more, and I want to add more gourami to our tank. Is this possible? Or will they not all get along as they mature? I would love to add some opalines. Just one or two. AqAdvisor warns that different species of gourami will be too aggressive towards each other, and past threads indicate that even more than one gourami will be too much. But I found a beautiful tank last night that only housed gouramis. So obviously this is possible, but I'm really wanting others opinions first. I don't want to do something that will seriously harm my fish in the long run, I just can't get over how beautiful these fish look and need some experienced opinions and facts.
I have a 40 gallon breeders tank with 4 opaline gouramis ( 1 male 3 female ) , 4 siamese algae eaters , and a female dwarf gourami. The opalines and dwarf have been together for a little over 2 years. Added the algae eaters about 8 months ago. Every thing is moving along fine. Provide hidding places for the male. Floating plants are another plus. I have water sprites. Run your air stones ( if applies ) only at night. They are lunged fish and I think it over stimulates them.
Saw this post and wanted to let you know on what we encountered.
I love kissing guppies as I always knew them and wanted some in our tank and finally found some! Oh I was so happy when they started kissing (when really they're fighting for control) but then horror started to happen. About a month later 2 of the 3 started chasing the other fish in the tank and actually manage to kill the weak ones.
It got so bad we ended up buying a tank divider and sectioned them off. All I can say is just be sure the ones you get are going to be communal with others.
I understand. My wife and I also too get the majority of our fish at Petsmart.
We do have a couple local stores too, Teske's and Roe Aquarium; but for the most part we always end up back at Petsmart due to the selection.
You can never really know how a fish is going to react. I've had fish spaz out over nothing.
In my 20 gallon I just broke down I had 9 hengeli rasboras and 3 dwarf sunset honey gourami and everything was fine then all of a sudden the male thought he owned the tank (I had 1 m 2 f) and so I put him in my 46. He hid. He wasn't the big boy of that tank. (my parkinsoni rainbow is) I saw him often but he wasn't aggressive because the females weren't in the tank. I put the females in there while taking the male out (he's like "that's where my women went!" and they were seriously still scared of him even though he was netted. The females originally hated each other in my 20. They had their corners but when the male went nuts cornering EVERY fish in the tank it seemed to band them together and now they're in the 46 and they are like sisters now. Following each other around and stealing each others food. It's quite halarious to watch. I know that 2 are never good to have, because they normally bicker over superiority but I think their experience with the male made the difference. I love these little fish and will always have at least 1 in my aquariums. They poke eachother and have more personality than the bettas I've owned.
BTW The male ended up back at the aquarium store where he was adopted by an employee who needed a male for her tank. So good ending there.
The best answer with anabantids is "What is your plan B?"
Let's be realistic. If you could have a tank full of Betta Splendens... what would be the point of the rest of the fish in the hobby?
The good news is that it is indeed possible to have more than one in a tank. Obviously, it works best in larger tanks. Anabantids aren't world class swimmers... housing two in something larger than 100g might as well be two seperate tanks for all they care. In smaller tanks like a 40g, break up the tank's sight lines with thick plants and decorations. Provide caves and hiding spots. (Some people just break up the tank with dividers and hide the dividers with the plants for 100% always works perfection. This really the only way with smaller tanks like 20g.)
Next, research the Gourami. Some of them, like Sparkling Gourami, like to be in groups. Some, like several of the dwarfs, are more mellow and will tolerate fellows. Sometimes, you can even pop two Betta Splendens in a 75 gallon and everyone gets on famously (It doesn't happen often). It comes down to the individuals... and you have no idea what is going to happen with the individual until it happens. It may even take a few days, or weeks... or months. Or maybe everyone will be chill forever.
The only thing you have to figure out before you try it is, "What's your plan B?"
My plan is to add them slowly to let them get used to the newcomers, but not so far apart that any are full grown before I'm finished adding them. I'm thinking a few weeks to a month or so in between each one. I did purchase two dwarf gourami together (both of which are male since that's all my petsmart carries for dwarfs) and in the two weeks I've had them, they are still getting along great. I'm considering adding a couple more male dwarfs (I hope that with no females to fight they'll stay as peaceful as I've read they can be) or possibly adding an opaline or blue as well. I plan for at least some of them to get along together but if some do not, my plan B is to rehome them to different tanks in my home. Right now we do have another 20 gallon and plan to add at least one more 20 gallon or larger, each of which would home a dwarf if a problem with them should arise. I have several plants to help with hiding now, but I need to purchase large plants for this tank before I add anymore gourami if I really want to try to make this work.
I think mogheden put is best. Have a plan B. I've kept Betta spp for a while and have had some very large differences in temperment. Some will hunt down everything and some were extremely chill. I've had the same experience with my gourami.
About a year ago I added three honey gourami (1 m 2 f) to my 29 gal. I had the misfortune of getting an extremely aggressive female (bought them online so I didn't pick the fish). She bullied both the male and the female. I thought I could alleviate this by adding the submissive female to the main tank (they were in a 20 gal QT) first. She went in about a week before the others and seemed pretty confident after a few days. When the others came in that changed. She was bullied by both the male and the female. Removing and reintroducing the dominant female didn't help. Eventually I just had to remove the submissive female.
Even though I've had this bad experience with them, I still love gourami. But what I've learned from it is that sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. Instead of trying to find another female for the tank, I've added more cardinal tetra now. The male and female still spat but never with the ferocity that my two females would. There is a balance and who am I to mess with it?
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