PLATINUM GOURAMI (Trichopodus trichopterus .Sp)

PLATINUM GOURAMI (Trichopodus trichopterus .Sp)

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The Platinum Gourami is a beautiful color-morph of the Three Spot Gourami Trichopodus trichopterus (previously Trichogaster trichopterus). It is one of the more subtle color varieties with its white body having soft yellow or silver undertones and a deeper toned striped patterning along the back. There is still a hint of marbling visible on this species, but it lacks the two dark spots seen on its parentage. This pretty fish, sometimes called the Silver Gourami, will make a gorgeous addition to a community aquarium.

This gourami has been developed in captivity for the aquarium trade, first appearing in 1970. Breeders selectively paired individuals for their desired coloration and strengthened it over several generations. A gold color form called the Gold Gourami also appeared in 1970. Other mutations include a silver blue variety with darker blue markings that was developed from the Blue Gourami. It is known as the Cosby Gourami, named after the American breeder that developed it. The Cosby Gourami was further developed into the Opaline Gourami or Marbled Gourami.The majority of these varieties are commercially bred in the Far East and Eastern Europe.

These are Labyrinth fish, also called Anabantoids, which are distinguished by having a "labyrinth organ". This is a respiratory organ that allows them to get air at the surface of the water. Like other fish they have the ability to pass water through their gills to obtain oxygen, but they are also able to breathe atmospheric oxygen. Another characteristic of the labyrinth fish is that of being a bubble nest builders. The male will build a bubble nest at the surface of the water and once the female lays the eggs, he will place them in his nest and guard them until they hatch.

These fish are very similar to their predecessors in all aspects other than coloring. They are the same in size and have the same habitat and care requirements. These are some some of the hardiest aquarium fish and make an excellent choice for new fish keepers. Aquarists will rarely forget the gouramis they have kept because each one has a remarkably individual personality. Platinum Gouramis are long lived and seem to be quite aware of their owners. These beautiful fish also have the endearing habit of using their pelvic fins to feel their environment and even feel their tank mates.

Because this is a man made strain, inbreeding is common in the genetic history of these gouramis. It is therefore in the aquarist’s best interest to take extra care when choosing specimens. Sulking or resting on the bottom is never a good sign. Look for a well formed fish, free of skeletal or other deformity, and without obvious injury. If possible inquire as to the origins of the specimens to ensure that reliable breeding practices were used.

The Platinum Gouramis, like all the variants of this species, are generally considered a good community fish when small. But when they get large they are often not as peaceful as the other gouramis. They have been known to attack smaller fish and males can become belligerent or territorial. The best tankmates are other fish that are of similar size and temperament.

These fish can reach a length of up to 6 inches (15 cm), but about 5 Inches (13 cm) is a very good length for it to attain in the aquarium. As juveniles they can be kept in a 15 - 20 gallon aquarium but they will soon outgrow a tank this small. As adults at least a 35 gallon tank or larger will be needed. Because of their varying temperaments, the tank should be decorated in a way which allows both the dominant and quieter personality type fish to live happily. Densely planted areas will help create some hiding places and they will also appreciate the cover of floating plants for some shadowy areas.

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