The Blue Gourami is also known as the Three-Spot Gourami. This gourami is a rather peaceful fish that is very comical to watch as a juvenile. The Blue Gourami has only two spots, one in the center of the body, and a second at the beginning of the tail. The eye is actually the third "spot" that is referred to in the name. Traditionally silvery blue in color, their colors can change significantly with their moods, as well as during spawning, when they obtain a much deeper blue hue. Blue Gouramis are considered Labyrinth Fish, meaning they breathe directly from the air and should have access to the surface of the aquarium.
The Blue Gourami will be housed with a variety of tank mates that are of similar size and temperament. While males can be territorial with each other, they become timid around other, more aggressive fish. The ideal tank set-up would be an aquarium of a minimum of 20 gallons which has plenty of live plants as well as rocks and driftwood for use as hiding places.
The best way to differentiate between the male and female Blue Gourami is by the dorsal fin. In the male, the dorsal fin is long and pointed, while the female's is shorter and rounded. When ready to breed, the male builds a bubblenest and then begins to entice the female by swimming back and forth, flaring his fins and raising his tail. When this behavior is noticed, the water level should be reduced to 6 inches. After spawning the female should be removed to a separate aquarium as the male may become aggressive toward her. The male will tend to the eggs until they hatch, and after hatching, there should be frequent water changes, especially during the third week, as this is when the labyrinth organ is developing. The fry should be fed infusoria and nauplii.
The Blue Gourami is an omnivore and requires both algae-based foods as well as meaty foods. An algae-based flake food, along with freeze-dried bloodworms, tubifex, and brine shrimp will provide these fish with the proper nutrition.