Genus name: Macropodus Opercularis
Also known as: Paradise Gourmami
Distribution: Korea, China, Vietnam, Taiwan
Length: up to 3.5″ (9cm)
Minimum Tank Length: 24″ (60cm)
Water Temperature: 59-75F (15-24C)
Diet: Worms, crustaceans, insects, dried food, plant matter
Water: not critical
Breeding: Egg Layers
The Paradise Fish is a moderately elongated labyrinth fish with lateral compression, particularly in the rear half of the body. The colouration varies greatly between the sexes. The male Paradise Fish has an olive head with brownish marbling, and the flanks are marked with alternate blue-green and red tranverse bars. The female Paradise Fish is a duller colouration, and she only has red transverse bars on her flanks, and not on her fins as the male does.
The Paradise fish can be very aggressive, particularly at spawning time, so it is best to keep them in a species aquarium. The aquarium should have patches of dense vegetation, including a small number of floating plants, and sufficient open water for swimming.
Algae growth on the glass of the aquarium, as well as other places, will not be a problem, as Paradise Fish will eat it.
At breeding time, the male Paradise Fish builds a bubble-nest at the surface, and, after spawning, spits the eggs into the nest from below. It is advisable at this point to remove the female Paradise Fish from the aquarium for her own safety, as the male may get over-zealous in protecting the eggs. He will then guard them assiduously until they hatch twenty four hours later.
After three to five days the young Paradise Fish are free-swimming.