Pearl Gourami

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Trichogaster leerii - (Bleeker, 1852)
Pearl Gourami

Trichogaster leerii.jpg

A glorious fish with excellent community manners and a reputation as the most durable of all the gouramis. Male is on the left in this pair. Neil Hepworth


The Pearl Gourami is among the loveliest of all the aquarium fishes, sedate and elegant. It is a curious fish that utilizes its “feelers,” modified pelvic fins, to investigate its surroundings. This is the hardiest of all gouramis and long lived—up to eight years.

Family: Osphronemidae

Other common name(s):

  • Mosaic Gourami
  • Lace Gourami

Native range:

Habitat: T. leerii prefers a tank that is well planted and with dark and bright areas to suit the fish’s moods. Generally, this fish will stay in the open and occupy the center of the tank.

Maximum length: 12 cm (5 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 76 L (20 gal)

Water: Freshwater 22 °C (72 °F) - 26 °C (79 °F)

General swimming level: Midwater to top.


Omnivore. The Pearl Gourami is relatively easy to feed and will accept a variety of foods, including tropical flakes, freeze-dried and frozen foods. Green foods are important in the Pearl’s diet, and this fish is well-known to consume unsightly filamentous algae. Live foods, such as black worms, brine shrimp and glass worms, are also relished.

Aquarium Compatibility

Keep one male with one or two females. Eats hydra. Peaceful species that should not be combined with aggressive fishes, such as cichlids, as it may hide in the corners and refuse to eat. Keep only with mild-mannered bottom or mid-water species.


Builds a large bubblenest among floating plants. Males tend the eggs and fry.
See: Breeding the Pearl Gourami.


Take care when moving this fish, as it is vulnerable to fungus when the slime coat is damaged.

Reference: 101 Best Tropical Fishes
Image credit: NH
Text credit: KW