Opaline Gourami: Care, Tank Mates, Size & Lifespan

Aquarium enthusiasts always look for unique and beautiful fish to add to tanks.

This stunning freshwater fish that is easy to care for and has a peaceful temperament, the Opaline Gourami, may be just what you need.

They are hardy and adaptable, which makes them ideal for beginners or those who prefer low-maintenance fish.

This article will provide an overview of their natural habitat and basic characteristics and share some tips on caring for them in your home aquarium.

We will also discuss their diet requirements, compatible tank mates, breeding tips, and more.

Natural Habitat & Basic Characteristics

The beautiful Opaline Gourami (Trichopodus trichopterus) is part of the Osphronemidae family of fish and hails from Southeast Asia.

In their natural environment, Opaline Gouramis inhabit tranquil habitats such as swamps, marshes, and peatlands.

The lush vegetation of these still and sluggish waters provides excellent shelter and feeding grounds for these remarkable fish.

Caring for Opaline Gouramis is a pleasure, especially for those just starting a hobby.

These peaceful creatures require minimal attention and are an excellent choice for any aquarist.

The Opaline Gourami is a silvery pale blue, with darker blue patterns decorating its body.

It is a Labyrinth Fish, meaning it needs to access the tank’s surface to breathe in air.

The Opaline Gourami is compatible with tank mates that are similar in size and temperament.

This makes them ideal for those who want a peaceful and harmonious tank.



As you observe this selectively bred variation of the three-spot gourami, you’ll notice an oval-shaped profile with silvery blue coloring adorned by splotches of cobalt blue.

The opaline gourami’s striking appearance results from careful breeding over time, aimed at producing color variations and pattern development that set it apart from its ancestors.

Genetic mutations have also played a role in creating this beautiful fish.

Fish breeders strive to create the brightest and most eye-catching specimens they can, and they certainly succeed!

Though males and females look fairly similar, there is one noticeable difference.

Male fish have elegant, elongated dorsal fins, while females have more rounded, stubby ones.


At an average size of 6 inches, Opaline Gouramis make great additions to any community tank.

With a moderate growth rate, keeping an eye on their size compared to other tank mates is important.

Once a fish reaches about three inches, they are considered “mature” and ready to start breeding.

This is just the beginning, though, as they will still grow until they reach their size range’s upper end.

Genetics and the quality of care you give your fish are the two major factors determining how big they will become.

To make sure your little buddies reach their full potential, be a responsible owner and take the time to research potential sellers before you buy.


With an average 4-6 years lifespan, providing a suitable environment and balanced diet for these hardy and adaptable freshwater fish is essential.

While genetics play a role in determining how long Opaline Gouramis live, environmental factors also heavily influence their lifespan.

By properly caring for these beautiful fish, you can help ensure they live a long and healthy life.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Health benefits: A varied diet with algae-based foods and protein snacks can help prevent common health problems that may shorten their lifespan.
  • Aging process: As these fish age, they may become less active and more prone to illnesses. Regular water changes, testing, and monitoring can help maintain optimal living conditions for aging Opaline Gouramis.
  • Genetics and lifespan: It’s important to note that the lifespan of individual Opaline Gouramis can vary based on genetics by purchasing from reputable breeders or stores with knowledgeable staff members.

Basic Care Guidelines

Regarding tank size requirements for opaline gouramis, we recommend a minimum of 35 gallons, allowing enough space for them to swim and exhibit their active behavior.

For tank setup recommendations, plants must provide shelter and hiding places, but make sure they don’t overcrowd the aquarium.

It’s essential to test the water regularly and perform routine maintenance, such as partial water changes every two weeks.

Common diseases that opaline gourami may be susceptible to include fungal infections, bacterial infections, and parasites like ich.

Keeping the aquarium clean and maintaining proper water parameters can help prevent these issues from occurring in the first place.

Tank Size Requirements

If you’re considering bringing home an opaline gourami, it’s important to remember that they require aquariums that can hold at least 35 gallons of water.

Although it may seem large, expanding your fish’s living space will benefit their well-being.

Here are some things to consider when setting up their new home:

  1. Aquarium dimensions: A more extended tank is ideal for these active swimmers.
  2. Filtration options: A powerful filter system will help keep the water clean and clear, especially since opaline gouramis are susceptible to health issues. Consider investing in a canister filter or hang-on-back filter.
  3. Decor ideas: These fish love plants, so adding live or fake foliage can shelter them and make them feel more comfortable. You can also incorporate rocks or driftwood for added aesthetic appeal.

In addition to providing ample space and proper decor, keeping up with tank maintenance is crucial for the health of your opaline gourami.

Be sure to test the water regularly and perform 25% water changes every two weeks.

With a little effort and attention to detail, your opaline gourami will thrive in its spacious new home.

Tank Setup Recommendations

To set up your opaline gourami tank for success, you’ll want to consider the aquarium dimensions, filtration options, and decor ideas.

For starters, a 35-gallon tank or larger is recommended to provide ample swimming space and accommodate their territorial nature.

A hang-on-back filter or canister filter are good options for filtration systems as they provide efficient water circulation and maintain optimal water quality.

Regarding aquarium decor, live plants such as java ferns and anubias are great choices as they provide shelter for your opaline gouramis while also contributing to the overall aesthetic of the tank.

Gravel or sand substrate can be combined with decorative rocks or driftwood pieces to create hiding spots for your fish.

Additionally, lighting options should mimic natural daylight cycles to promote healthy plant growth and encourage natural behavior in your fish.

By considering these factors when setting up your opaline gourami tank, you can create a comfortable environment that promotes their well-being and allows them to thrive.

Water Parameters

Maintaining optimal water parameters for your opaline gouramis is important, as they’re susceptible to common health problems and thrive in specific conditions.

This involves regular water parameter testing to ensure that pH levels are managed within the recommended range of 6.0 to 8.8 while water hardness is maintained between 5 and 35 dGH.

To keep their habitat clean and healthy, performing a 25% water change every two weeks is recommended.

Another crucial aspect of maintaining optimal water parameters for your opaline gouramis is temperature control strategies.

These fish prefer a consistent temperature range of 73°F to 82°F, which can be achieved through aquarium heaters and thermometers.

Moreover, as active swimmers that require access to the water’s surface for breathing, these fish need sufficient oxygenation in their environment.

Common Diseases

As a responsible fish owner, you’ll want to watch for common diseases that can affect your beautiful Opaline Gourami.

Opaline gouramis often suffer from illnesses like Ich and hole-in-the-head caused by parasites.

If your fish has Ich, white spots appear all over its body.

On the other hand, if it has a hole-in-the-head disease, you may notice deep pits forming around its lateral line and head.

Here are some prevention methods and symptoms identification tips to help you spot potential issues before they become serious:

  1. Keep water parameters in check, including temperature, pH levels, and water hardness.
  2. Avoid overcrowding the tank with too many fish.
  3. Quarantine new fish for at least two weeks before introducing them to the main tank.
  4. Look out for signs of stress or disease, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, discoloration, or unusual behavior.
  5. Perform regular water changes and clean the aquarium regularly.

Acting quickly is important if you notice any concerning symptoms in your Opaline Gourami.

Here are some treatment options and quarantine procedures that can help:

  1. Isolate sick fish in a separate quarantine tank if possible.
  2. Consult an experienced veterinarian or aquatic specialist to identify        the disease and recommend appropriate treatment options.
  3. Follow medication instructions carefully and monitor progress closely.
  4. Be prepared to perform extra water changes or other supportive care measures as needed.
  5. Pay close attention to any other fish in the tank to prevent the spread of illness.

Taking proactive steps towards prevention and swift action when necessary can help ensure that your Opaline Gourami lives a happy and healthy life.

Diet and Feeding


Feeding your aquatic pets a balanced diet is essential for their health and well-being.

Opaline gouramis have a varied palate, but it’s important to provide them with foods that cater to their nutritional requirements.

They do well on algae-based diets supplemented with protein-filled snacks like brine shrimp or bloodworms.

When purchasing commercial fish food, opt for high-quality brands that contain a blend of plant matter and animal proteins.

Feeding opaline gouramis with small meals throughout the day instead of one large meal is best.

A feeding schedule consisting of two or three small portions daily will help prevent overfeeding and reduce waste buildup in the aquarium.

Be mindful not to leave excess food around, leading to poor water quality and other related health issues.

Additionally, adding live plants in their tank will provide some natural grazing options while helping keep nitrate levels under control.

Behavior and Temperament

When observing the behavior and temperament of these beautiful freshwater fish, it’s important to note that they have distinct personalities and can become territorial towards other fish in their environment.

Opaline gouramis are relatively peaceful but can act aggressively when provoked or feel their territory is threatened.

To avoid aggression triggers, providing them with a well-enriched environment that allows social interactions and personality quirks to shine through is essential.

They thrive on having plenty of hiding spaces, such as plants, for shelter.

Opaline gouramis are social creatures that enjoy interacting with other members of their species and non-aggressive tank mates.

They have been known to playfully chase each other around the aquarium or even participate in mock fights without causing harm.

However, they may exhibit aggressive behavior towards others in the tank if they feel threatened or stressed due to overcrowding or poor water quality conditions.

It’s essential to keep a close eye on your opaline gourami’s behavior and take immediate action to ensure a peaceful aquatic environment for all inhabitants.

Compatible Tank Mates

Choose compatible tank mates for your lively and quirky opaline gouramis to keep your freshwater aquarium peaceful and harmonious.

These fish are relatively peaceful but can be territorial, so avoiding aggressive species is best.

Instead, opt for non-aggressive fish of similar sizes, such as plecos, characins, loaches, larger tetras, peaceful barbs, and big invertebrates.

When considering tank mate compatibility with opaline gouramis, it’s also important to consider community set-ups.

While these fish can coexist with other species in a community tank setting, they require shelter plants and may become stressed if there is insufficient hiding space.

If you’re looking for alternative options to pair with your opaline gouramis, consider adding snails or shrimp, as they won’t compete for resources and can help keep the tank clean.

Ultimately, choosing the right tank mates will ensure a happy and healthy environment for all inhabitants of your aquarium.

Breeding Tips

Breeding opaline gouramis is an exciting and rewarding experience that requires careful attention to their breeding habits.

These fish build bubble nests on the water’s surface and lay eggs.

Males exhibit protective behavior over the eggs, but providing a separate breeding tank to maximize fry survival rates is essential.

To trigger breeding, high-protein snacks can be added to their diet.

Once the males build bubble nests, maintain a water temperature of around 80°F in the breeding tank.

After hatching, fry feed on the egg sac for a few days before becoming free-swimming.

Adult males should be removed from the tank once this happens to avoid any aggression toward the newborns.

Breeding opaline gouramis is an exciting process that requires patience and dedication; however, proper care and attention can lead to a successful result!


In conclusion, the Opaline Gourami is a stunning and easy-to-care-for freshwater fish that can thrive in various tank setups.

Opaline Gouramis are hardy and adaptable, making them great for beginners and experienced aquarists.

They can live up to 4-6 years with proper care and suitable tank mates.

Overall, the Opaline Gourami is a beautiful addition to any freshwater aquarium and will bring its owner joy for years.