Dwarf Gourami or German Blue Ram as a Centerpiece Fish?
I am revamping my 30g freshwater tank and I am wondering what the pros and cons are between a Dwarf Gourami and a German Blue Ram as a centerpiece fish?
Their companions will all be fairly peaceful fish: 9 Cardinal Tetras, 6 Pygmy Rainbowfish and some bottom feeders: 4 (possibly only 3) Ottocats, 2 Albino Cory Catfish and 1 Peppered Cory Catfish.
My tank will have a relatively dense patch of real and fake plants, I will add a couple of good hiding spots and there will be a clearer area for the fish to swim. I do weekly water changes, and am not adverse to doing twice weekly water changes. The tank is filtered with a Fluval 206 Canister Filter- i can add water levels and media choice to this list if anyone asks and/or it becomes necessary.
So it comes to me wanting a bit of spice in my tank, and i am asking anyone who has experience with the German Blue Ram and/or the Dwarf Gourami to help me to decide on which suits the tank population more as well as to let me know any general care tips.
Thank you for your time.
Last edited by Misse; 11-15-2013 at 07:58 PM.
Reason: accidentally hit enter and it posted before i had finished.
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I've had both. I've had two male gouramis and one female German blue ram. Honestly, I love the colors and inquisitiveness of the GBRs. I've found that many tend to be like this. A lot of people say that GBRs *need* pristine water, but I've found that that is not truly the case. You see, I will admit that I had my GBR in with 3 goldfish and an angelfish. She was the sweetest fish in that tank and no one picked on her, not even the female bettas. She lived for quite some time and actually died due to a mistake that I made. I out a terra cotta pot too close to the side of the tank. She wedged herself in between the two and got stuck. I felt terrible, because you could clearly see how she squished herself. It was awful ...
Onto brighter news! I like how DGs will examine things with their feelers and spit water at food above the water line [I have a video if you're interested]. I like how GBRs will follow your finger and tend to be very hyper in a way. Honestly, I think a male GBR would suit that tank perfectly. The black spot on the abdomen and dorsal would contrast lovingly well with the cardinals. They are not aggressive to other fish, nor have a "territory" when there's only one DG/GBR in the tank. This is my experience and what I've heard. DGs will possibly build a bubblenest in your tank, which is actually good competition for bettas. I'm still trying to decide if my male DG built a better nest than my bettas ever did. xD
So, I do believe, and will stick with the thought, that a male German blue ram would be perfect for your tank. But, that doesn't mean that the dwarf gourami is completely out of the question. I think it all comes down to what you can find first and if it's healthy or not. It doesn't always matter how pretty the fish is, but the general health of it too. Perked up fins and activity is key!
Good luck in your search! I hope my input helps!
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I've had dwarf gouramis in the past, and I have a bolivian ram now. I love both, and IMO, a German Blue Ram is more colorful, but a dwarf gourami has more character, almost like a dog. Don't get me wrong: both fish seem to really have personalities, but I really like how the gourami plays with things with its feelers. Also, the gourami, usually venturing all over the place in your tank, would be less shy in your tank than a German Blue Ram might be, coupled with the activity with your rainbowfish. The GBR usually spends its time from the middle to lower reaches of the tank anyway.
Also, i've found (compared to my bolivian Ram) that gouramis are more adaptable to pH. GBRs especially love a lower pH, whereas with a dwarf gourami, their colors will shine in pretty much any pH.
I agree that while GBRs don't perhaps need "pristine" conditions all the time (although of course that would be best), they need better conditions than the gourami does, because again, the gourami is more adaptable. Plus, the gourami is a labyrinth fish like a betta, so it can and will breathe air from outside the tank (another character feature!).
Overall, for your tank, I would suggest a dwarf gourami. But, of course, the final decision is up to you, and you can't go wrong with either of them. Keep us posted!
Tanks: 30 gal community and 10 gal shrimp/community
I have recently gotten myself 2 golden rams and 1 electric blue, and would recommend them to anybody, whether they asked or not They're beautiful fish and such characters! Dwarf gouramis are nice, but they just don't hold that appeal for me. My big male ram is very active, always within view, and is proving to be a fantastic feature fish. So my vote goes to the Ram. Although the above poster did make a great point that it really depends on what's the healthiest fish you can find :)
Dwarf Gouramis are prone to Dwarf gourami Disease. Big amount of the fish imported from Asia (most are) are infected. I like DG's very much, but are by far most getting ill after some time !! A teal shame but reality !! I'd go for rams.
No Cory, No Glory !!
I've had both GBR and DW gourami. Love them both. In my experience the DW gourami is much more adaptable as was said above.
I have no doubt that you will do a great job keeping your tank clean, however, be aware that GBR's like a well established, mature tank. A recently cycled tank may not be the best environment for them as they are a bit fragile.
Another thing of note:
The Gourami will spend his time in the upper to mid range of the tank.
The GBR will spend the bulk of his time toward the bottom of the tank.
Also, unless your tank is mature, I wouldn't get ottos for a while. You need a build up of algae for them to eat.
And cory cats prefer to be in a group of their own kind - with 6 being the minimum for a school. so I'd suggest you get either 6 albinos or 6 peppered and do make sure they have a spot to tuck in under..
again - this is your call. just giving my best advice that I've received here or have myself experienced.
30 g FW planted:corys, female ABNP, blue angel, harleys, zebra danios, rummies,
15 g FW planted:2 male guppies, neons, pygmy corys, clown pleco, 4 types of shrimp, assassin snails
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fishless cycling: http://bit.ly/1DARf3T
fish in cycling: http://bit.ly/1ILvcfp
+ 1 to FM, great info on both species.
The Dwarf Gourami with all their "inbreeding" problems are still the less sensative to water conditons than the GBR if that will help you make your decision.
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