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ORNATICAUDA LICORICE GOURAMI (Parosphromenus ornaticauda)

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Known from a handful of localities within the Kapuas drainage around the town of Anjungan, West Kalimantan (Kalimantan Barat) province, Indonesia (Borneo), and has also been recorded in the Pawan river system near Ketapang, considerably further south.

Type locality is ‘Sungei Pinyuh, 8 kilometers southeast of Anjungan on road to Pontianak, 0°20’N, 109°08’E, Kalimantan Barat, Borneo’.

A stenotypic inhabitant of peat swamp forests and associated blackwater streams.

In unaltered habitats the dense canopy of branches above means very little light penetrates the surface of such environments, and riparian vegetation also tends to grow thickly.

The water is typically stained darkly with humic acids and other chemicals released by decaying organic materials, the dissolved mineral content generally negligible and pH as low as 3.0 or 4.0.

Unfortunately some habitats within its known range have already been polluted or cleared and drained for agriculture or and the species may be highly-threatened.

At some localities in the northern part of its range this species occurs sympatrically with the congener P. anjunganensis while in the south it’s been collected alongside P. quindecim.

Maximum Standard Length
25 – 30 mm.

An aquarium with base dimensions of 45 ∗ 30 cm or equivalent is sufficient for a pair; this species requires a little more space than the majority of congeners due to the courtship behaviour of nuptial males (see ‘Reproduction’).