Aquarium fish gourami not needed in the submission. In aquariums, goura fishes appeared long ago and firmly conquered the place of some of the most interesting and undemanding fish.
It was not immediately possible to deliver these fish to Europe. They were caught both in Thailand, and in Vietnam, and on islands in Malaysia, but the fish could not stand even a day and died. In those days, the transportation of exotic fish was carried out in the traditional way. in wooden barrels filled to the top with water.
Few people knew about the features of the biology of labyrinth fishes, although it was during these years that Carbonnier studied and successfully spread macropod in Paris. Having no access to atmospheric air, gourami survived only until the end of the loading of barrels on the ship. After many unsuccessful attempts, the fish were categorized as problematic, and their distribution stopped for a good twenty years.
Eyewitnesses were perplexed: in nature gourami produced in rain barrels, gutters, abandoned quarries with inconceivably dirty and muddy water. what did the fish lack during transportation? Only at the very end of the 19th century, a certain discerning European, observing naughty creatures in a natural reservoir, noticed that fish periodically rise to the surface of the water behind an air bubble.
On the advice of the Indonesian conductor, he filled the transportation containers with gourami water only two-thirds and did not seal them. As a result, several thousand immigrants were delivered to their destination without a single loss. As such, Europe was first met by the spotted gourami Trichogaster trichopterus (Pallas, 1977) in 1896.
Aquarium fish gourami are widespread. Soon the breeding of labyrinth gourami was successful. The first batches of fish, also subsequently successfully propagated, arrived in Russia in 1912-1915.
Actually, a generalized and very conditional concept gourami fish includes 12 species from 5 different genera (Osphronemus, Helostoma, Sphaerichtys, Trichopsis and Trichogaster), and the genus Helostoma is distinguished by some researchers into an independent family.
Strictly speaking, real gourami one of them is a large (up to 75 cm) commercial fish Osphronemus goramy Lacepede, 1802, which is considered an exquisite delicacy of the Sunda residents. Fishes of other genera are much smaller. from 30 cm kissing gouras (Helostoma temminskii) to tiny (3-4 cm) dwarf gouras (Trichopsis pumilus).
The most popular among aquarists are representatives of the genus Trichogaster. Currently, the nominal form of spotted gourami in amateur reservoirs is quite rare; much more often there are so-called marble gouras, obtained by crossing the spotted gouras with those living in the fresh waters of f. Sumatra subspecies T.trichooterus sumatranus, having a bluish color. Subsequent selection made it possible to obtain specimens of a bright blue, silver and metallic color of the main background with fancy stripes and spots on the back of the body.
Intrinsic gourami unpretentiousness, simplicity of their maintenance and breeding allow most aquarists to treat them as a past stage, a kind of step on the way to gain personal experience. As a result. a decrease in demand for them, especially against the background of the influx of a large number of new exotic wonders from the reservoirs of the whole world.
Undoubtedly, the peak of popularity gourami as an aquarium fish has long passed, but fortunately there is no hope of fading away interest from both beginners and lovers. This is evidenced by the constant appearance of new breeding forms of gourays with an unusual coloration, and the indispensable presence of the usual varieties in the assortment of the pet trade enterprises.
Keep trichogasters easy and very exciting. Long-term observation of well-fed healthy fish is a real pleasure and never bothers you; their cheerfulness and "communicativeness", the unkindly cockiness, involuntarily fascinate. If such a parallel is possible, then of the four types of temperament, the definition of “sanguine-vine” is most appropriate for gourami. Mobility, constant interest in everything new. whether it be a neighbor in an aquarium, a snail crawling along the wall or an element of scenery that has just been placed on the bottom. all this makes them different from fish of many other species.
In all species of gourami (except for chelostomy), the anterior rays of the pectoral fins were modified and acquired the form of thin long filaments that serve as the sense of touch. With these comical severity, these paired processes of fish examine unfamiliar objects. A few decades ago, the amateurish name "nitodice" was used even more often than by "gourami".
Fish like a fairly bright overhead light, temperature 24. 26 degrees C, dGH 8. 10, PH about 7. Fresh water is preferable, it is desirable to replace it (up to 1/3 volume) once a week. Despite the ability of fish to exist with an oxygen deficiency, they best grow and develop under normal aquarium conditions with well-established aeration and filtration, with a minimum of dissolved and suspended organics. Good oxygen indicators of the environment do not affect the need of fish for self-direct "feed" with atmospheric air. this should be remembered when keeping and especially during transportation. The lack of air access leads to irreversible changes in the vessels of the unique respiratory organ (labyrinth), and in a few hours the fish inevitably die.
In aquariums with nitrophobia, it is desirable to have dense aquatic vegetation, but with obligatory free space for swimming and schooling games. In tanks without plants, gourams become somewhat shy and less contrasting in color. The capacity of the aquarium to hold several pairs of adult manufacturers must be at least 100 liters.
All members of the genus Trichogaster are truly omnivorous, with the possible exception of the pearly goose of T.leeri, which is a bit more discriminating in artificial food. If labyrinth fishes are easily accustomed to any animal and vegetable food, these immediately take all kinds of unfamiliar food, absorbing it with appetite and in large quantities. In nature, fish are clearly not spoiled by the prosperity of food, which led to a wide food adaptation. insects, larvae, vegetable organics, food garbage, bottom fauna. as they say, just to fit in the mouth.
In aquariums, nitrophores, in addition to traditional live food, are equally eaten with shrimped beef, fish, poultry, heart, liver, oatmeal, white bread, processed cheese, low-fat cottage cheese, etc. The sense of proportion in fish leaves much to be desired, so it is important not to allow overfeeding; 1. 2-week fasting adult specimens suffer without any consequences. Even the usual weight loss in such cases is not observed, as well as the growth of intra-and interspecific aggressiveness.
It is interesting to note the special commitment gourami to such an unworthy kind of food, like dried daphnia and gammarus. Sensing the smell of delicacies, the fish literally satane, push their neighbors, and, reaching the feeder, capture food from the surface along with air bubbles, which results in a loud champing effect. Of course, it does not follow from this that the fish should be fed with dry crustaceans; this can be done only from time to time, and even then only to observe an interesting "performance".
In nature, spotty and blue goura reach lengths of 12-14 cm; in aquariums, they and marble subspecies usually grow no more than 8–10 cm. Sexual dimorphism in nitropods of all kinds can be traced quite clearly. males are larger and slimmer, their color is brighter, and fins are longer. The easiest way to determine the sex of the dorsal fin, larger and elongated in males, which usually eliminates errors in the selection of producers.
Mature marble gourami usually become by the end of the first year of life. The preparation of spawners for spawning practically boils down only to an enhanced diet of various animal feeds. When breeding, you need to remember a few rules: first, spawning is strictly double and the presence of other fish of your own or someone else’s “tribe” is completely excluded.
Secondly, the water in the spawning grounds for breeding gourami (capacity 50. 60 liters) should be softer than the aquarium, especially on dKH, by 4. 5 degrees. Boiled water is usually suitable; It is necessary to aerate it intensively for 3–4 hours before use. Well, and thirdly, the temperature rise, which is mandatory for all labyrinths, to 29. 30 degrees C; this also in nature serves as a push for the beginning of the marriage pore.
The nest, the construction of which is engaged in the male, consists of air bubbles glued together with the secret of the salivary glands in order to avoid bursting and spreading over the surface. It has an uneven thickness and irregular shape. A support and a frame for the nest are plants floating and creeping along the surface of the water. for the entire period of spawning one should refrain from aeration, filtration and intensive mixing of water in the spawning ground. Caviar has a positive buoyancy, provided 30. 40 percent fat content in each egg. The female postponed to the very center of the nest, she is immediately fertilized by the male, on whom the care of the offspring is subsequently entrusted.
After spawning, the female must be returned to the general aquarium. The male actively vyklevyvayu whitened unfertilized eggs, but to guarantee the protection of eggs from mycosis in the water add methylene blue (3 mg per liter of water). If desired, the eggs along with the nest can be transferred with a solid net to a separate incubator, providing the same conditions and dosage of disinfectants, but it is better and trouble-free to leave it in the care of the male.
In adult fertile couple gourami there are many caviar (in aquarium conditions 1. 1.5 thousand pcs.). At 28. 30 degrees C larvae hatch in a day; After another 2–3 days, they begin to actively swim and concentrate in a dense cloud under the center of the nest. All this time, the male tirelessly guarding his offspring, returning to the place of too mobile and inquisitive "neslukhov."
Practice shows that during this period even for the night it is necessary to leave the incandescent lamp of 15. 25 W turned on above the spawn, burning completely. In complete darkness, especially in young males, the parental instinct often weakens.
About a day after the transition of the larvae to the active swimming, the male is removed from the spawning farm and start feeding the young.
The best starter food is “live dust”, home cultures of freshwater and brackish rotifers: the first three or four days, no more, you can get by with the Paramecium caudatum infusion-slipper.
Fry gourami grow quickly, but need frequent and careful sorting. At the age of one month, they already resemble their parents like two drops of water and exactly copy their habits.
The labyrinth organ develops in gooras on 10–14 days after birth and functions until the end of life. In the nursery vessels can be traced to all stages of the transformation of fry into full members of the labyrinth family.
Teenagers become especially attractive when they reach the size and shape of pumpkin seeds. Some amateur growers even intentionally start specific aquariums with a flock (75-100 units) of young of this size, periodically replacing the overgrown with new small fish.
In a large aquarium with an abundance of different (preferably small-leaved) plants, such a flock gathers in the freemost area (it is best organized in the center of the reservoir). Playing tirelessly and pinching each other, young fish, as if following a strict sequence, one after the other with lightning speed throws to the surface, capture air bubbles and return to their place. The impression arises of a real carousel with its short, hilarious threads that the young feel and then repel each other, while at the same time amusing landfills and "parties".
Young fish are very jumping, and vessels with them must be covered with cover glass, while providing a mandatory gap between it and the surface of the water with a thickness of 1. 1.5 cm.
The most colorful representative of the genus Trichogaster is considered to be the pearl gourami. T.leeri (Bleeker, 1852). The males are especially beautiful, having ideally a blood-red abdomen, a coffee-brown back and shiny dots scattered all over the body, resembling pearl beads. Females are colored more uniformly and not so expressively.
Conditions of detention and breeding are similar to those of spotted and marble gourami. True, pearl are somewhat more thermophilic, preferring a temperature of 26 to 28 degrees C under normal conditions and 30 to 32 degrees C during spawning. Spawning proceeds as well as among other representatives of the genus, but the mating games and the very moment of caviar laying are much more spectacular. Being under the nest, the fish are bent by the whole body at unimaginable angles, “hugging” each other and displaying almost snake-like plastics of the body. Freezing and twitching with sharp spasmodic movements, the male helps the female to free herself from her calf.
T.leeri larvae and fry are much smaller than those of marble gouras, and their oral openings are microscopic; "raise" and grow a large number of young. a time consuming task. Starter feed can only be Paramecia or the smallest pond "dust". Larvae grow much more slowly and more unevenly than among representatives of the species described above.
In aquarium conditions pearl gourami reach 8–10 cm, but even adult fish have very small mouths; live food for them is better to choose small and medium sizes. T.leeri treats artificial and vegetable feeds cooler than the bluish-spotty-marble counterparts, but gradually it can be accustomed to all kinds of food that are common in aquaristics.
Other members of the genus Trichogaster. the real moon gourami T.microlepis and reddish-brown T.pectoralis. in purebred form in aquariums contain very rarely. They are 5-6 cm larger than the spotted gourami; the natural coloring of these "Indochinese" is not very expressive. But with their direct participation, beautiful breeding forms were bred. gold, lemon, reddish (Cosby) and many others. Collectible hybrids do not exceed 10 cm in size, but are as hard and prolific as the main species. They took a worthy place in amateur reservoirs along with pearl and marble gouras.
Acquire aquarium fish goura preferably at 4. 6 months of age, carefully selecting the brightly colored, well-fed specimens. If mass breeding is planned, it is better to immediately pick up 12 to 15 conditioned individuals in different outlets and keep a flock in aquariums for 150 to 200 liters, providing comfortable conditions and abundant feeding.
It should be remembered that the newly acquired gourami need all the traditional quarantine measures, otherwise the fish can present unexpected and treacherous surprises: external completely healthy, salted individuals often carry a whole bunch of bacterial infections. When they are planted in a decorative aquarium with other fish, there is a massive infection of its inhabitants. The gloomy comic of the situation is that the carriers of the disease themselves do not even have light external signs of damage in the period when the other inhabitants of the reservoir died long ago, demonstrating classical samples of perforated ulcers, eye loss (exophthalmia) and extensive tissue necrosis. And the perpetrators of the tragedy know yourself swimming and having fun, well, unless they occasionally scratch their side with something inanimate and lose some appetite. Unfortunately, such situations are very frequent, but not at all isolated. By the way, the low susceptibility of gourami to bacteriosis is “compensated” by their increased sensitivity to invasions of protozoa and flagellates; in such cases, the fish are sick along with others.
Thus, all newly arrived yarn bearers need full offensive quarantine. not observing the appearance in a separate tank, but intensive baths in “hard” solutions of NaCl, rivanol (ethacridine lactate), malachite green with methylene blue, and also antibiotics (biomitsin, oxytetracycline). Fish should rest in fresh, well-settled water; during quarantine, preferably not very abundant, but diverse feeding.
But now, finally, everything is done in good faith, and the "sterile" handsome teenagers gain weight and strength in a spacious warm reservoir. Growing and multiplying gourami, you will never regret the loss of time or the effort expended, for you will be rewarded for everything with a daily wonderful spectacle that simply cannot get bored.