The Paradise Fish is found across a considerably wide range of southeast Asia. In China, it is found from the east in the Yangtze river basin to the Pearl River basin, in Hong Kong, and on Hainan Island. It also occurs in Taiwan, northern and central Vietnam, northeastern Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, Japan, the Ryukyu Islands, and Korea.
Males are larger than females and are brighter with stronger color patterns. Their fins are also longer and larger.
Paradise fish are not good tank mates with fish their size, in fact, they are downright nasty, they rip tails and sometimes kill other smaller fish. They really prefer to live alone, but will accept some other species of fish as long as they are larger and non-aggressive. Similar to bettas indisposition, they are belligerent and predatory.
In a community setting, this fish needs to be the dominant species and should not be kept with other robust fish that may compete for control. It will fight with other dominant fish, or if the others are larger and aggressive it will hide, and often succumb to stress.
Young paradise fish can be kept in groups, but as they mature the males become combative with other males and any small fish can become a snack. Males generally do not get along together unless the tank is very large with lots of decor for hiding and retreat. Males should be kept apart or they will engage in aggressive combat, locking jaws, and damaging one another. If keeping a small group, it is best to keep them as a male and female pair in their own tank, or you can try to keep a group of females together.
A mix of neutral personalities of fish that are not similar in looks is the ideal goal for its range of tank mates. Be careful in selections, and be prepared to adjust companions if needed. Good tankmates can be larger fish such as goldfish as well as non-aggressive medium to large gouramis, robust cyprinid species, larger characins, eartheater type Geophagus cichlids, loricariid catfish from South America, large Synodontis catfish, and loaches. Avoid slow swimming fish or fish with long flowing fins.
Paradise fish love to eat. As omnivores, the paradise fish will accept most foods. However, they require a well-balanced diet to remain healthy. In the wild, they are predators, feeding on small fish and small aquatic animals like planktonic invertebrates and other zoobenthos. Feed often and generously, some live but dry food is accepted. Live plants are a must in whatever environment you place them in. Algae-based flake foods are essential, as well as meaty foods. Feed them small live foods when possible. Supplementation should include frozen blood worms, brine shrimp, mosquito larvae or any other suitable substitute. Generally, feed once or twice a day. They enjoy exercising their predatory nature on live foods, but should also be provided with some vegetable matter.
It is important to feed the female well before attempting to spawn, as she will go for up to two weeks without food while she holds the eggs. For breeder conditioning, live foods are recommended, as well as high-quality algae-based flake or pellet food.
- Species – Macropodus opercularis
- Common Name – Paradise Fish (Blue)
- Origin – Southeast Asia
- Diet – Omnivorous
- PH Range – 5.8 – 8
- Temperature – Tropical and Coldwater 16°c – 26°c
- Breed Type – Bubble nest builder
- Current Size – approximately 5cm (Grows to approximately 12.5cm)
- Sex – Un-sexed