Kiss Pisces Why do they kiss?

Kisses in the aquarium: With Guramis anything but a proof of love

“The so-called 'kissing guramis' actually got their name because of this special look and behavior,” explains veterinarian Jan Wolter, head of the ornamental fish practice in Berlin. "These animals have much thicker lips than other fish and also make frequent kissing movements with their mouths." Every now and then the Guramis "kiss" each other when they meet. However, this seemingly tender ritual is anything but an expression of love.

Kissing is part of courtship behavior. If two males vying for the same female come close, they press their mouths together and push each other back and forth over and over again. The fish offer their spectators outside the aquarium an entertaining spectacle that is harmless to them. "In this test of strength, the weaker often gives up after a short time," says Wolter. "Injuries almost never occur."

The guramis belong to the labyrinth fish. They are easy to socialize because they are extremely peaceful aquarium inhabitants. They are best suited to fish from their home region of Southeast Asia. Other labyrinth fish or barbel are therefore very suitable for the fish flat share. A lavishly planted community aquarium with a temperature of 24 to 28 degrees is sufficient for maintenance in the home aquarium. For a healthy and balanced diet, lovers of ornamental fish should offer their kissing guramis both meat-based and plant-based food.

The kissing guramis are not only a real eye-catcher because of their special courtship behavior: "From the shape of the mouth, aquarists can see that these animals are growth eaters," explains Wolter. “They grate their food off stones or wood. That is also very exciting to watch. ”IVH