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11-17-2012, 09:40 PM #1
First Post and Qiestion -Kissing Gourami
Just stumbled across this forum today as I've been having some trouble with my tank mates.
I've had an established tank for a while now - it has one Betta, Common Pleco and TWO Pink Kissing Gouramis. The Gouramis are about 7 years old now and fairly large - they've been in the same tank the whole seven years. The past week I've seen pretty constant aggression between the two.
I tried increasing planting in the tank (fake plants) heavily to see if it would help - but it doesn't seem like it has. They don't fight each other with the lip grasping - mostly just pecking and chasing.
Is my only solution to separate them? If so - are these fish okay to live alone? I would probably pull the Betta with it and have two tanks with the two fish.
Thanks for any help
11-17-2012, 10:10 PM #2
Hi and welcome.
I have not kept the larger gourami - mainly because their profiles indicate they don't mix well with other fish. If you separate them and put the betta with one, then the betta is likely to get beaten up because the single will turn his aggression on whoever is available.
Actually, I'm surprised the betta has survived with them - they are both labyrinth fish and generally don't get along.
Hopefully someone with experience with these fish can weigh in.
In the mean time- how large is your tank.
11-17-2012, 10:21 PM #3
Thanks for the response!
There are plenty of hiding places for the Betta and they've never even demonstrated the slightest interest in him! I can't even find him half of the time! But I suppose it is possible that the aggression being spent on the other Gourami could be turned to any tank mate.
My biggest worry would just be that they would be lonely without a tank mate - aggression or not.
It's not the largest tank in the world - not sure of the exact volume - over 40 gallons.
PS: Some elabroation on the aggression - from time to time they do lock lips - not often at all. Maybe once every few days I catch them. They don't chase each other fast either - they more so hang out at all times. But it seems that one has taken to 'bumping' the other. Coming in at some speed and either coming up or down onto the other and 'bumping' him out of the way. It's a new trait.
11-17-2012, 10:31 PM #4
how big are the gouramis? I'm thinking pretty big ...if they're 7 years old.
From what I've read, they can get up to 12 inches. If so, a 40 gallon is a pretty tight space for 2 fish that size plus a common pleco that must be a monster if he's as old as the gourami. The tight space might be the reason for the aggression.
what's your maintenance schedule like? The water quality might also be an issue. I'm thinking you should be changing a minimum of 50% of your water weekly - maybe even twice a week. Plecos make a lot of poo :o(
11-17-2012, 10:50 PM #5
They are a decent size - maybe 4-5 inches long from nose to tail. I've also read they can reach 12 inches - they don't tell you that at the pet store when you're 18 and buying a fish...haha
I'm trying to find the means to upgrade to a large tank - in the mean time this is what I have.
I'd agree that it's a space issue if it wasn't all of a sudden - they didn't grow an inch in a week. One day last week it started and hasn't really stopped since. All of a sudden one of them hit 'that point' - it just doesn't make sense.
I'm not changing anywhere near 50% weekly. Maybe 15-20%. The tank doesn't foul too much from my Pleco - the filter handles most of it pretty well.
11-17-2012, 11:35 PM #6
You might check Craigs list for a tank.
Might also consider upping your W/C percentage. most of us here do minimum 50% a week
And yes to the fish store. they don't always get it right :o)
Originally Posted by Interlux
11-17-2012, 11:48 PM #7
11-17-2012, 11:50 PM #8
Cindy is pretty much spot on here. To have any chance of keeping multiple gourami's, especially those larger varieties, you really need to give them plenty of space and plenty of cover. A tank, no less than 55g with stacks of plants in it is the way to go, but even then there's no guarantees that they will get along. Just about any kind of fish can quite happily get along with another of its own kind for a number of months or years, then all of a sudden they mature and can get territorial and aggressive.Three-fourths of the Earth's surface is water, and one-fourth is land. It is quite clear that the good Lord intended us to spend triple the amount of time fishing as taking care of the lawn. ~Chuck Clark
11-18-2012, 01:46 AM #9
One of the mods here has a saying that is something to the effect of:
just because it hasn't gone bad yet doesn't mean it never will. When it does it will be fast, and it will be ugly. (I apologize for butchering your saying whoever this is. I read it when I first came here months and months ago and it just stuck with me.)
I cannot tell you how often we get the horror stories of "I woke up and 'fish A' had completely torn 'fish B' apart overnight. But they were friends!" This is very common in certain species, and gourami are unfortunately one of them. Also included are angels, oscars... Basically picture anabantoids and cichlids for the most part. Also knifefish are notorious for this. If it has started, it will probably not stop until it gets very ugly and someone is dead or permanently disfigured.
11-18-2012, 03:17 PM #10
Thanks for the responses everyone!
I have never seen a recomendation of 50% a week or twice a week - I'll up mine a few more gallons for now. But I've never had any problems either so I'm comfortable with where it is.
Just a side note - since I posted this they have mellowed out a bit - hopefully that stays! I'm not hopeful - it's probably because they know I'm talking about separating them lol