Com­pli­ca­tions

What to do if unex­pected dif­fi­cul­ties occur?

As every­where, prob­lems and com­pli­ca­tions might occur in the licorice gourami aquar­ium. The best strat­egy is to take care in advance to pre­vent any dis­ease out­breaks. If you get healthy, vital fish that have not been kept in unfavourable water con­di­tions and with inap­pro­pri­ate food, you are in the best position.

The expe­ri­enced Jacob Geck has a good advice for prob­lem pre­ven­tion: if you have estab­lished good rou­tines for the main­te­nance of fish and tank, you should carry on this way and not strive for an eas­ier solu­tion. Many com­pli­ca­tions come up if the reg­u­lar care is dis­re­garded or delayed: con­trol of water val­ues, failed water change, clean­ing of fil­ter, trans­fer of fry to a new tank, setup of new live food cul­tures, etc. Short cuts may some­times be fine, but the impres­sion is that ulti­mately you will get the bill in form of unnec­es­sary complications,

As with all fish, licorice gouramis can get dis­ease, too. Ood­inum (vel­vet) is a rel­a­tively com­mon par­a­site of weak fish that usu­ally indi­cates that at some point the nec­es­sary care had not been taken. If infes­ta­tion occurs, the chances of cure are the bet­ter, the faster you react. A very effec­tive reac­tive is a sub­stance with the chem­i­cal name ”2-​amino-​5-​nitrothiazol”, which is avail­able as med­i­cine under trade names such as ”Spiro­hexol” or ”Hexa-​Ex”. Fun­gal infec­tions or dropsy are more dif­fi­cult to treat. Here you can only try to use com­mer­cial med­i­cine, but not in the tank in which the fish are nor­mally kept.

If too many fish are kept for too long in too small tanks with­out reg­u­lar water changes, growth prob­lems even­tu­ally might occur, which will not be com­pen­sated for later. But this is not dif­fer­ent from other fish. If licorice gouramis do not show courtship or spawn­ing behav­iour for a long period, it has to be con­sid­ered that this is nor­mal, because in nature dis­tinct spawn­ing peri­ods exist. If extremely low water in the habi­tats is fol­lowed by mon­soon rain, the qual­ity of the rem­nant water is altered or renewed in very short time this will lead to strong devel­op­ment among the fry. This sit­u­a­tion can also be sim­u­lated in tanks to stim­u­late the breed­ing will­ing­ness: strong water changes, offer­ing of a new sort of food, which trig­gers spawn­ing and a change of the tem­per­a­ture (a few degrees up or down). Gen­er­ally mostly a reluc­tance to spawn by the female is the rea­son for a lack of eggs. How­ever, some­times the prob­lem can also lie with the male. Not all female-​male com­bi­na­tions work well. If you have a good pair, take good care ofr it.

If the spawn­ing fish are not able to pick up eggs that fell down and dis­ap­peared between coarse gravel, this is a mis­take the keeper made. The same applies if the fish are not able to attach the eggs to the top of the cave (some­thing they will try in any case) – this indi­cates the use of cal­cium con­tain­ing water, which is too hard. If clutches dis­ap­pear overnight, there can be var­i­ous rea­sons; what exactly has hap­pened, the keeper must dis­cover in each indi­vid­ual case by care­ful obser­va­tion. Some males will eat the eggs and females might hunt for small fry. In tanks with many hid­ing places often some or even many fry will sur­vive. After some weeks, when they have become big­ger, there is no dan­ger of being eaten any­more. Often fry grow up eas­ily besides their par­ents. How­ever, other fish, which were not involved in the broods, are always a dan­ger to the young fry.

And regard­ing other com­pli­ca­tions? Quite sim­ple: call this FORUM, find the appro­pri­ate topic for your ques­tion, describe the issue and ask! Or the other way round: if some­one has found a solu­tion for a prob­lem or com­pli­ca­tion – call the FORUM and put the topic on dis­cus­sion. Oth­ers will be grateful.

(PF)

(PF)

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