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Dwarf Gourami Care: Tank Mates, Growth Size, Habitat Setup, & Compatibility

The Dwarf Gourami gets it’s name from it’s small size of growth. When compared to other species of Gourami Fish, the Dwarf Gourami is the smallest. It’s average size is anywhere from 2-4 inches (5-10 cm). This particular species of Gourami is from South Asia and has been widely distributed around the world for the two reasons of aquatics and food.


In some countries, the Dwarf Gourami is eaten as a meal. It may come as bothersome to aquarium owners such as myself, but it’s just the brutal truth. These fish are a beautiful fish to keep as pets in fish aquarium due to their vibrant coloration and open personality.

The male sex of the Dwarf Gourami is the most colorful of the two sexes. The color pattern is full of light blue shimmering effect with red /orange vertical stripes going down the middle of it’s body. It truly is a beautiful fish on all levels. The image being shown is a male sex. This is the single reason why this species of Gourami is so popular amongst fish aquarium owners.

Habitat of Natural Lifestyle

The Dwarf Gourami is a tropical fish that needs temperatures between 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit. It has a tendency to live in natural spots with lots of water movement in rivers and mountains. Water current is not a problem to these fish at all. It is said that a large amount of Dwarf Gouramis was accidently set free in the state of Florida and they have been living their on their own level ever since. Not creating any biological issues for the habitat but instead just keeping their peace.

Water Parameters & Habitat

Gourami fish are known as “Labyrinth” breathing fish. This means that they have a special setup in their lungs where they breath from the surface of the water. You will commonly see them swimming to the surface area to catch a breath of air. This means that they can live in hardy water parameters since they are actually breathing from the surface in a way. Clean water is still key to keeping healthy aquarium fish though. Never loose touch with that fact.

As far as a habitat setup, Gourami fish really enjoy planted tanks that give them algae to feed on. They are basically looking to feed and “nibble” on food they can eat all day long. Longer aquariums are better than taller aquariums too because of the fact of them having to reach the surface for them to take a breath of air. They will appreciate almost any aquarium with a well established setup. They are truly happy fish to be around.

Tank Mates & Roommates

Any “well mannered” fish are going to make for good tank mates for the Dwarf Gourami. What you need to watch for is aggression. Each and every gourami is going to have a different personality. I have kept all types of Gourami fish together and once and a while you will get a crazy aggressive one you need to watch. A good trick to settle down a gourami fish is to get a “more aggressive” fish like a nice cichlid species. Gourami fish will be aggressive if given the chance, but when a fish is obviously more aggressive.. they back down very fast.

Examples: Mollies, Platies, Swordtails, guppies, and other species of Gouramis (be careful and watch), South American Cichlids, some species of Tetras, almost all bottom feeders & MORE. You will have great luck with other well mannered gouramis like the honey species and blue opaline.

Breeding in Fish Tanks

Most other species of Gourami fish breed differently than the Dwarf Gourami. It actually is different due to the fact that it creates what is known as a bubble nest. This is closely related to the Betta fish in many ways. This sometimes makes breeding a little more difficult for fish keepers due to the fact that you need to research this entirely new method of breeding. Once you do get it correctly though, one single female can lay up to 500-700 eggs at once.

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