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The Kisser

By Christy Lowman

Burke Countythe kisser


Since February is the month of love, I thought it would be cool to talk about a fish that loves to kiss. This was one of my favorite fish to watch in my aquarium when I was a kid. Have you ever heard of this fish?

This fish has several names, two of them are: The Kissing Gourami and Kisser Fish.

This Fish loves to kiss but not out of love. They kiss to establish dominance in the fish tank. They have a protruding mouth with large lips.

They will connect other Kissing Gouramis with their pouty lips in a kissing motion and then push while kissing. When they quickly release their kiss, the stronger fish becomes the more dominant one in the tank or body of water if they are living in the wild.

The kissing war doesn’t kill the weaker fish but can cause them to stress out, especially in the aquarium. Getting overly stressed can make a fish sick or result in death.

Pink Gouramis also appear to be kissing when they are eating algae from rocks, the surface, or the aquarium glass. To do this they protrude their lips in a kissing motion and use them along with their tiny, fine teeth, to pull off the algae.

The Kissing Gourami is usually silvery-peach to pink in color. These fish are found in Southern Indonesia in the wild and is known as the Pink Kisser. This color is more likely to be found in a pet store along with a few developed breeds known as The Dwarf Kissing Gourami, or The Balloon Kissing Gourami.

There is also a rarer color, a grayish-green Kissing Gourami, that can be found in the wild in Thailand and is known as the Green Kisser.

Kissers are freshwater fish, and in the wild, they can be found in ponds, canals, and marshes. They prefer shallow areas that have slow-moving waters, with lots of vegetation to snack on. Their ideal water temperature is 72-82 F.

These fish have a labyrinth organ inside which allows them to breathe oxygen from the surface that then goes directly into their bloodstream.

They are also omnivores, so a good variety of plant and meat foods are ideal for them.

Most of the time these fish stay around 5-6 inches in length if they live in an aquarium, but they can grow up to 12 inches in the wild.

Kissers generally live between 6-8 years but have been known to live as long as 20.

Thirty gallons is the smallest aquarium tank recommended to have these fish in, and up to seventy-five gallons might be required if the fish grows a lot.

Although these fish are found in aquariums, people also eat them in Southeastern Asia. They steam, bake, broil, and pan-fry them.

You cannot really tell the female and males apart. They look the same, the only difference is the females tend to be heavier than the males.

The Kissing Gourami’s real name is Helostoma temminckii and was found and described by the French naturalist and zoologist Georges Cuvier in 1829. Later these fish were named after the Dutch zoologist Coenraad Jacob Temminck.

The Kisser is categorized as a semi-aggressive fish. They are normally peaceful with other fish that are the same size or larger but have been known to bully or eat smaller fish, especially babies.

This fish reminds me of something very important Jesus told us to do. Do you know what that is? To love Him and one another. It is our tendency, just like the Kisser fish to love or be nice for a short time or only to certain people. Then we are mean or bully others.

But that is not what God wants us as Christians to do. We are to come out of our comfort zone, our group of friends and family, and love everyone regardless. We are to be compassionate and love people who don’t have the same ideals as we do. They may be kind of weird, smaller than us, larger than us, or ugly, it doesn’t matter. If we can’t love one another and show kindness, then how are we going to tell others about our loving, caring God?

We are all the same, one person is no better than another, but one thing we all need is love from each other and ultimately from God.

Did you know that Jesus even loved the men who hung Him on the cross? He asked God to forgive them for what they were doing right before He died. The thief that was on one of the other crosses with Jesus asked for forgiveness and wanted to go with Jesus. Jesus showed love and compassion and forgave him of his sins, so he could live in heaven instead of being condemned to hell for eternity.

We must remember to live like Jesus, so God can use us as a witness of His love for all of us. So just remember when you are around someone you don’t like or someone who is mean or gets on your nerves, to be like Jesus and show them love and compassion. Who knows, your example might be what makes them want to know more about Christ.

Dear Lord, help us remember how important it is for us to love You and love one another. Help us live by Your example so others will want to know more about You. Dear Lord, sometimes it’s not easy to love everyone, especially those who are mean to us. Help us to remember the greater purpose, which is to ultimately bring others to heaven. In Jesus’s name, I pray, AMEN.

“And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13 KJV 



Christy Lowman is a Christian author and illustrator that lives in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains with her husband and two children. She enjoys writing and illustrating books for all ages. Some of her short stories are published with Guideposts and HCI. Christy gives all the glory to God in everything she does. A portion of every book sold from the Small Bible Character Series will be donated to battle human trafficking. If you enjoy her books, “like’ her author page on Faceook and let her know! You can buy her books at // You can reach her at //


You can read more Christian news from Christy here.