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Trichogaster microlepis
Moonlight Gourami

 Age of Aquariums > Freshwater Fish > Moonlight Gourami - Trichogaster microlepis

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Photo Credit: Karen Trinkaus

I recently acquired a pair of female moonlights gouramis. These seem to be a very peaceful fish, but have a HEARTY appetite! They were eating the second they were released, and haven't stopped yet. Mine are still only 10 cm in length, so they have about 5-7 more cm to grow. I saw a female nearly adult size at the fish store that was absolutely HUGE! I didn't think they got all that big. I imagine I will be upgrading the home of my moonlights to something larger than 170 L in the future. Time will tell. I am on the lookout for a male moonlight. I have not been so lucky as to find or see one yet, but have been on the lookout. These gouramis don't strike me as that fussy about water, and they are labyrinth fish so gulping air at the top of the tank is normal, if not essential for them! As of right now, I certainly would not hesitate to recommend female moonlights to many aquarists.

Contributed by Tricia Martin

I must be the only one with a mean moonlight gourami. It attacks everything that swims in my tanks, including other gouramis, such as a pearl which gets along fine with just about anything that won't kill it. As far as this fish goes, it's almost doesn't care about the water as long as it's dechlorinated and not too cold. It's a great fish and grows fast, but it's probably only mean because it's the only moonlight gourami that I own. I originally wanted to give it away because this thing was a pain, but I couldn't find anyone to take it so I just bought a tank divider and haven't had any problems since, this fish even grew on me.

Contributed by Alex

I've been a fan of moonlight gouramis for the entire 25 years I've been in the hobby. Every tank (in my opinion) needs a shimmering streak of silver to liven things up. If you desire quick flashes of glistening silver, then I'd go with silver dollars or tinfoil barbs. If a more leisurely streak is your thing, then moonlight gouramis are sure to please. I've found moonlights to be very hardy (I've always had bad luck with kissers). If kept in a well-conditioned environment, they will live to a ripe old age and will grow reasonably large. Pairing a male and female together tends to lessen any possibility of aggression towards others in a community tank. As they are though, I'd say they lean more towards aggressive behavior than do pearl gouramis, but are certainly nowhere near the match of the more aggressive blue gourami. If kept in a community tank with fast movers, there should be no problems at all.

Contributed by Frankland Strickland

I have had my 250 litre tank for only 3 months now and I have a pair of female moonlights which are growing at a rate of knots. Their diet is varied and which includes fresh Scottish prawns (boy do they love em) and mussles. What they have done to my disgust is eaten all my floating plants such as chickweed and water lettuce so I recocken they are very greedy fish as mine are very well fed, and have no excuse.

Contributed by Jude Drewery

I have kept moonlight gouramies in my fish tank four about 3 years. They live quite happily with my bala sharks, neons and zebra dianos. Originally I had a male and female, who constantly kept ripping my plants up for their bubble nest. But the female drowned herself whilst I was at work, she was caught up between the heater and corner of the tank. I since brought another two, thinking they were female, but turned out to be male. Now I have 3 males, they tend not to disturb the plants as much as the female. They love the frozen bloodworm and occasionally like a little brine shrimp. Overall they are a well loved fish in my tank and love to come to the front at feeding time, as they are usually the first to tuck in.

Contributed by Anna Guest

I have a male and a female moonlight gourami. The female is rather more peaceful than the male, who tends to be quite aggressive. The male has a penchant for ripping apart Cabomba plants and reducing them to fragments! They both eat voraciously. They are the largest fish in my tank, and are kept with a honey gourami, and two golden gourami, without problems. I find that they are the sort of fish that have character in an aquarium. Some fish like neons and danios etc are rather uninterested in you, but other fish like all gouramies and angel fish tend to be curious and I sometimes find myself being spyed on when I'm moving stuff in my room or cleaning or doing something which probably appears strange to them! One word of warning with these creatures, the male is very aggressive in many cases. When I first bought these two, he reduced the female's fins to shreds, literally. So I kicked him out of the main tank and exiled him in a spare tank for about five months, until the poor battered female healed completely and was happy again. Today I reintroduced him (with great caution) and he's quite a gentleman up to now at least. Hope he remains like that. Enjoy your moonlight gourami in a large tank which is densely planted and ideally has some sort of floating plants to make the tank shaded, and to provide the occasional veggy snack!

Contributed by eevaya

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