Paradise Fish
Alternative Name(s):
Scientific Name(s): Macropodus opercularis
Category: Tropical
Maximum Size: 10cms
Minimum Tank Volume: 88 litres
Minimum Tank Size: 30" x 15" x 12"
Water Temperature Range: 16-26°C
Water pH Range: 6.0-8.0
Water Hardness Range: 5-30 dGH

General Information: This Belontiid originates from similar environments in the Far East to the Betta splendens with whom it share some characteristics such as the ability to breathe air using a labyrinth organ, bubble-nest breeding and male-male aggression. As a belontiid, it is similar in appearance to many Gouramis. Aggressive and territorial, only 1 male per tank unless over 4ft long. Females can do well in small groups, but not guaranteed to be non-aggressive.
Tank Requirements: In nature this fish seeks out sluggish or still waters - tank set up should have very low flow, sponge filtration is preferred. Needs good areas of planting, broken lines of sight. Tank size above is for a single M/F pair.
Diet Requirements: Generally unfussy eaters taking flake and pellets readily. They enjoy live/frozen foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworm and daphnia which also bring out their best colouration.
Compatibility: Not a community fish - it will eat smaller fish. Only 1 male per tank unless longer than 4ft, best housed in a species only set up. A shoal of larger fast moving cyprinids may work.
Recommendations: This fish has a wide range of tolerance for pH and temperature, but to see it at its best should be kept between 21-24C in neutral water. Needs a secure lid as it will jump. Do not keep with Goldfish.
Common Problems: Male-male aggression in tanks less than 4ft. Damaged fins if kept with "nippy" species, will kill and eat smaller or non-aggressive tank mates or any similar to itself seen as potential competition
Similar Species: M. ocellatus, M. spechti, Gourami, Betta splendens
Sexing: The male is much more vibrantly coloured than the female and once mature develops long filamentous anal and dorsal fins and an extended caudal.
Breeding: Bubble nest breeder. Similar spawning and breeding behaviour to the Betta - remove female for her own safety after spawning.
Author(s): Fishlady | Photo: fishy_tom | Views: 15727
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