Paradise gouramis (Macropodus opercularis) are family Belontiidae fish that come from eastern Asia, specifically nations such as Vietnam, China and Malaysia. In the wild, paradise gouramis are commonly seen in many types of habitats, from rice paddies and wetlands to tiny creeks and big rivers. The genders not only look different, they also occasionally behave differently from each other.
About Paradise Gouramis
Paradise gouramis or "paradise fish" do well in spacious tanks that are equipped with plentiful thick live plants, including floating ones. Many hiding spots are also imperative, whether driftwood or stones. Suitable aquariums for the species need to be able to accommodate at least 30 gallons of water. These narrow fish tend to be open to all sorts of sustenance, with examples such as brine shrimp, blackworms, bloodworms, flakes and daphnia. Feeding them is not a particularly difficult task, as they are not at all finicky or demanding. Appropriate water temperatures for them are anywhere between 60 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit. Overall, they are a highly robust species. As labyrinth fish, paradise gouramis can bring oxygen in straight out of the air. This is a result of their breathing organs, which are called labyrinth organs.
One noticeable difference between the genders involves size. Members of the species generally grow to lengths of approximately 4 inches. However, the females are usually just a tad shorter than the males, by slightly less than an inch or so.
Coloring of paradise gouramis also differs between the sexes. Body coloration of the males is significantly more intense in males than in females. The females are a somewhat lackluster greenish-gray, while the males' colors consist of an assortment of vivid colors, with bluish-green blacks and numerous components of orange, pale blue, white and red.
Other Physical Differences
The fins of male paradise gouramis are both bigger and lengthier than those of females. This change usually shows up as the males hit the age of reproductive maturity. Another key physical difference between males and females involves the lips, as those of the boys are a lot fleshier and bigger.
Major Behavioral Difference
Although not a physical characteristic, knowledge of behavioral patterns can also be a useful tool for distinguishing between paradise gourami sexes. Although the species overall is tranquil and laid-back in temperament, the males can be extremely truculent around each other. Their scuffles can sometimes even be fatal, which is why it's so important that you never allow more than a single fully mature male paradise gourami to reside in one tank.