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Honey Gourami Sex (gourami noob)

Discussion in 'Gouramis and Anabantoids' started by Vengified, Jul 13, 2018.

  1. Vengified

    Vengified Fish Fanatic

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    As title says, I can't tell the sex of my Honey Gourami. I have found conflicting information about coloration, markings, and fins, so I'm not positive. I know most LFS only get males, due to their vibrant colors, but when choosing mine, before I knew any method of sexing, I chose this one, because of the grayish "stripe" of markings, I thought looked like a tattoo. Also, depending on the light, sometimes its pale. Sometimes bright yellow (have LEDs on front, 50/50 fluorescent in normal hood spot).

    The fins are tucked in for most of the pictures, this is due to them swimming, as most of the tank has a gentle current, driven by the DIY spray bar. I assure you, water parameters are always impeccable, and the fins do extend out when the fish go to their "resting spots" up in the plants, where there is less current, I believe the bottom pic has their fins out a bit.

    So ya, several pics below, help me please:

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  2. NickAu

    NickAu Member
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    Wow big stringy poop.
     
  3. Vengified

    Vengified Fish Fanatic

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    The picture makes it looks more stringy than it is, I promise. It's normal size, pale off white color. That was taken mid morning, and the last he/she ate was the evening before, frozen omega one super brine shrimp and spirulina. His/her poo usually a darker orange/brown, sometimes green when I do spinach.

    But I'm still not sure if the mid line stripe is indicative of female, or just a unique coloring for a male? I can tell guppy sex, except the babies having trouble with, but not gouramis. No giant gonads to see.
     
  4. Lunar Jetman

    Lunar Jetman Chatroom Moderator
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    Gourami’s aren’t necessary easy to sex unfortunately. Some variations are easier than others but most require comparisons between the male and the female to be sure. Since you only have one it’s going to be a guess as to which you have.

    From what I remember after keeping a couple a few years back, the males were brighter in colour and the females ever so slightly smaller and more rounded in the belly.

    Does it really matter what you have though if you’re only keeping one? Unless you’re planning to get another one to make a pair but I would have done that straight away so you can try to pair them in the shop.

    Personally I’d get a few more then see how they alll behave/look but that would depend on your tank parameters, size etc.
     
  5. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    It's one of those weird colour forms of the honey dwarf gourami. Awful things to try and sex.

    Males normally have longer more pointed dorsal and anal fins. Yours has a pointy dorsal and a rounded anal fin.

    Females have the black line along the body but so do young males.

    Females are usually fatter than males due to the eggs, but over fed fish can look fat too.

    Your best bet is to grow it up and in 6-12 months it will get much more colourful if it's a male, and will stay the same if it's female.
     
  6. essjay

    essjay Member

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    To me it looks like a female of the yellow colour morph. I have never seen a male with a dark stripe but most females have them.


    I don't know where Vengified lives, but in the UK it is very hard to find natural coloured honey gouramis. Most shops sell only the yellow ones; some also sell the red ones but those that stock natural ones are few and far between.
     
  7. Vengified

    Vengified Fish Fanatic

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    I live in USA. Montana state. The label at the fish store just said "Honey Gourami" with sublabel of "Colisa Chuna" and that's the one I picked, cuz it was the only one in the tank with a stripe. The other 5 or 6 were more yellow, but not by a lot. No one was chasing anyone, and there was some tetras in with them. They also had "Sunset Honey Gourami" and a "Golden Honey Gourami" tanks, separate from the one I purchased this one. As well as many other not honeys. So ya, I'm not sure?

    I am not purchasing ANY fish for a while though, so I guess it doesnt matter, at least for the time being. I would love to get more gouramis in the future though, as I am OVER guppies hardcore! Especially with the last big female dropping over 100 in a few hours time...

    Oh, and thank you guys all for your input! I'll be a while getting rid of guppy fry, and growing shrimp colony, so I'll just watch the gourami grow. Maybe in a few months it will be easier to see! :)
     
  8. Vengified

    Vengified Fish Fanatic

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    Ok. According to my last post, I lied. :eek:
    @Colin_T @essjay @NickAu @Lunar Jetman

    I got rid of heaps of fry today, took a batch down, and got some credit. My shrimp colony is doing well too...
    ... BUT, I couldnt help myself, as the LFS had wild honey gouramis and I wanted to see if mine was a male or female. My curious nature always gets the better of me.

    So, I tell her I want two females, (just in case mine is a male) and she asks which ones. I point at a few, (all of them being the same appearing silver and brown stripe colors. I saw some more orange when I was in there 3 days ago, but I ask her anyways, if they are indeed both female, and she says yes. In the bag they appear the same, in the bucket while drip acclimating they appear the same, I put them in the tank, and everything changes...

    One of them turns orange, with black on his belly, (pretty sure that's male right?), the other ones stripe disappears, and changes color to all silver, (female right?), but my original gourami, (yellow?golden?idk?), stays exactly the same as he/she previously was?

    My question is this: if my original yellow honey gourami was male, wouldn't he change into breeding colors too? I read and saw they get black or blue on their throats as well?

    I dont think anyone is fighting, they appear to dance somewhat, either the new male and my yellow dance, or the new male and new female dance, the new female and my yellow dont really do anything besides swim past each other and touch feelers and move on. But my yellow seems to follow the new male, and has tilted to the side next to him a few times, not sure if it's a display of dominance or submission or what?

    If I had to guess, I would guess my yellow is female, but I have no idea how they should, or would normally interact as far as male/female, besides breeding? Would two males DEFINITELY fight, and both DEFINITELY show breeding color? I have another tank I can put any combination of the 3 in, but I'm paranoid now.... :confused:

    Like I said, havent seen any fighting I dont think, but I dont want anyone hurt. If needbe, ill take one back. Attaching some pics and videos.

    *** The videos have pretty self explanatory titles, any questions though, respond and I'll clarify, though I doubt I'll need to.

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  9. seangee

    seangee Member

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    Listen carefully, I'm only going to say this once...
    Do NOT buy any more fish :rofl:
     
  10. Vengified

    Vengified Fish Fanatic

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    :oops: I know it... I am so dumb... My yellow honey gourami looked sad. Or so I thought....

    When I posted before, it seemed like maybe my yellow was male, cuz the female had changed colors and he was dancing sort of, or so I thought, with her. I took the new male out, to see what just the two would do, and since then, the female hasn't changed color at all. My yellow has chased her around a bit, pretty speedily, and that's about it. I put the new female in with the new male, and both colored up. They are in the 10g, with my yellow and others in the 20g.

    I LOVE how the wild types change color. They are SO much cooler than the yellow, or at least the yellow that doesnt change color, but I cant get rid of tsunamidos, I have grown attached.

    But still, although that is great advice @seangee and I might have to take those two back, I am still curious whether if my yellow was male or female? If it was wanting to breed, dont male yellow change color and get blue on their throat? Cuz my yellow hasn't changed at all.

    In either case, I would think it takes time for a fish to get comfy and wanna breed, but the new ones went right for it, the second I put them in, even though they were in the bag together and looked identical and not breeding colors... If I have two females (one yellow, one wild), I will keep them all, add the driftwood out of the 10g, and some of the plants, to make it very dense with hiding spots. But if my yellow is a male, I need to take them both back I think, cuz if it is a male, it doesn't turn colors to breed with the female, it just chases her.

    If I do take them back, I think I am just gonna have to leave both tanks understocked for a while. A gourami, shrimp, and a couple guppies in the 20, and a couple guppies in the 10, until they grow out, then just shrimp...

    FISH ARE SO WEIRD!:alien:
     
  11. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    It appears you have 1 male and 2 females. And your yellow one appears to have a belly full of eggs and likes her new boyfriend.

    At the very start of the second video you posted it almost looks like they breed, with the male facing the camera and he swims right up against the yellow one and they touch sides for a brief moment. That is typical of fish when breeding. I didn't see any eggs come out but my guess is the male will start to build a bubble nest in a few days and then they will breed.

    Make sure you have lots of Water Sprite plants on the surface and keep them together unless you see them rip each other apart (and that is unlikely to happen).

    You should also start culturing green water and infusoria for the baby gouramis. See following link for info on how to do that.
    http://www.fishforums.net/threads/back-to-basics-when-breeding-fish.448304/
     
  12. NickAu

    NickAu Member
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    Before suggesting green water and infusoria for the baby Gouramis, ask " what are you going to do with the fry?"

    Unless you have someplace that will take them my suggestion is once the eggs are in the bubble nest get a net and scoop most of them out.
     
  13. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    he can trade them in at the local petshop like he does with the guppies, and due to the size of labyrinth fry, chances are most won't survive anyway :)
     
  14. Vengified

    Vengified Fish Fanatic

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    Oh jeez! So @Colin_T and @NickAu do you think it is "safe" to have the 2 females and one male in the tank together long term? Obviously separating after spawning (though it wasnt my intention to cause this) from what I've read, you are "supposed" to remove female after fertilization, and remove male after hatching? I am more of a "cross that bridge when we get there" person, which I know isn't the greatest way in all aspects, but pertaining to eggs, larva, infusoria, etc. I mean cross that bridge IF it comes, as I dont know if a bubble nest would even hold, or be possible in my tank. The current isnt ASTRONOMICAL, but there is definitely sufficient flow to prevent any "dead" spots, even with piles of floating plants, there is still some movement.

    I just wanted to have a few gouramis, and read several threads and posts and articles suggesting 1m/2f sort of like guppies. In the 10g, where both new gourami are, the male is sort of colored, but not black all the way up his throat, just his anal fin, female is totally silver, but they are coexisting peacefully. It appears the yellow in the mix, is what causes the chasing, I assume because she wants to breed, and "dont want that silver chick seducing her sea-man!" Right? See what I did there?

    *TL;DR - Anyways, bottom line for me, is can I house the 3 of them together, for their entire lives, (excluding when one of the girls gets baby fever (IF NECESSARY), and not have them chasing, nipping, causing stress and illness to themselves?
     
  15. essjay

    essjay Member

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    The yellow gourami is female. Male yellows do get a bit of black colouration on the throat but it is not nearly as extensive or as solid as the black on a wild coloured male's throat. Of the wild coloured, I agree with 1 male, 1 female. The male will colour up more as he settles in. Females often have a bit of orange in their anal fin, but apart from the darker stripe down their bodies, no other strong colour anywhere.
    I find it easier to tell males from females by their behaviour. Females will potter round the tank, usually in search of morsels of food. Males are more out and about, sort of more alert to their surrounding. Sorry, I can't think of a better way of explaining their behaviour than that.

    I feel that 10 gallons is a bit small for 3 gouramis. I have had more trouble with 2 females fighting than with keeping 1 male and 1 female together. Honeys are nowhere near as bad as other gourami species for males harassing females.

    As for fry, raising gourami fry is more difficult than other fish because the fry need constantly warm and humid air above the water while their labyrinth organs develop.
     

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