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Questions about Red Robins - T. chuna x T. labiosa hybrids?


Fish Fanatic
May 4, 2009
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So I went to my lfs intending to just get a couple more female Honey Sunset Gourami (T. chuna) to add to a female pair of Honey Sunsets I already have at home in my 40 gallon breeder, as I've found Honeys love socializing together in groups and it's cute to see them interacting together. I've also kept wild colored female T. chuna in the past, but like the more brightly colored Sunsets better.

Anyway, when I went to the pet store I saw these adorable fish labeled as simply "Honey Gourami" in the store that I suspect aren't actually purebred T. chuna at all, wild or sunset form. I think they're actually Red Robins - Honey Gourami T. chuna x Thick-Lipped Gourami T. labiosa hybrids. But I'm not positive, so I'll simply refer to them as Mystery Fish for now. The reason I thought the Mystery Fish could be Red Robin hybrids is because:
1. Mystery Fish are a really pretty red-orange color that's much redder than any T. chuna I've seen.
2. Mystery Fish are already bigger than the two Honey Sunsets I have had a couple years in my 40 gallon, but considerably smaller than the pure Thick-Lipped Gouramis labeled T. labiosa in the same store but kept in another tank.
3. Mystery Fish are not nearly as deep bodied as any of the T. lalia Dwarf Gourami varieties I saw in the store. Mystery Fish's body shape is much more similar to the body shape of true T. chuna than it is to T. lalia, so I don't think Mystery Fish are mislabeled varieties of T. lalia.
4. Mystery Fish's anal fins are an intermediate form between the strongly lobed fin of T. labiosa and the smoother, more even anal fin of T. chuna.
5. The petstore also has regular T. chuna and regular T. labiosa in other tanks that both look markedly different than Mystery Fish.
For anyone whose actually seen Red Robin hybrids in person, does it sound like Mystery Fish could actually be Red Robins?

If these are indeed Red Robins, could I get 2 female Red Robins and keep them with the 2 female Honey Gouramis I already have? I like the idea of branching out into keeping more varieties of Gourami, but since I just have the 1 tank available I figured that wasn't going to happen anytime soon.

I'm not sure how different from regular Honeys Red Robin hybrids will be. Will they recognize regular Honeys as similar enough to hang out together in a group with, or will the pair of female Red Robins not integrate with the pair of female Honeys in my tank? Because part of why I wanted to get more Gourami was to have a nice sized group so they can interact socially. If the two types will interact since they're all at least part T. chuna, will the larger Red Robins dominate the smaller Honeys, or will they be mostly peaceful with each other as is typical of unhybridized Honey Gourami?

Also, will the Red Robins still be good community fish? I know regular T. chuna are one of the most peaceful Gourami out there, but I'm not sure how different that would be for ones that are part T. labiosa. I currently have 5 Corydoras Catfish, 1 Albino Longfin Bristlenose Pleco, 1 Super Red Cockatoo Cichlid, 8 Harlequin Rasboras, and 7 Longfin Cherry Barbs in the tank. I want to make sure the Red Robins wouldn't be more aggressive to the other tankmates, either.

TLDR: Saw what I suspect are Red Robin Gourami (T. chuna x. T. labiosa hybrids) at my pet store. I want to get 2 female Red Robin hybrids and put them in with 2 female Sunset purebred T. chuna I already have. Are Red Robins similar enough to purebred T. chuna to buddy up and hang out together without aggression, dominance, or other problems happening? I really like seeing my purebred T. chuna hang out together peacefully and would only add the hybrids if they would be willing to join in on that dynamic with the T. chuna. Or should I just get more purebred Sunset T. chuna instead of the Red Robins?
The fish that are sold as Red Robin Gouramis are a line bred red variety of Trichogaster labiosa. Labiosa and chuna don’t hybridize. If you could provide a picture of the mystery gourami I’ll be able to give you a definite ID.

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