Belontia signata

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Belontia signata
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Anabantiformes
Family: Osphronemidae
Genus: Belontia
B. signata
Binomial name
Belontia signata
(Günther, 1861)
  • Polyacanthus signatus Günther, 1861
  • Macropodus signatus (Günther, 1861)

Belontia signata, the Ceylonese combtail, is a species of gourami endemic to Sri Lanka. This species inhabits shallow, slow-flowing clear-water streams. It can reach a length of 18 centimetres (7.1 in) TL though most are only around 10 centimetres (3.9 in). It is also found in the aquarium trade.[2] The combtail, in addition to normal gills, has a labyrinth, or rudimentary lung-like organ which enables it to survive in poorly oxygenated water, or even out of water, for considerable periods of time. Combtails can often be observed taking air from the surface of their tank to replenish their labyrinth.


While the combtail (or combtail gourami) is sometimes found in fish shops, it does not make a good pet unless kept by itself. In a community tank it will bully other fish, and may injure or kill them. They will eat almost any food presented to them including maggots, bloodworms, flake, pellet, and vegetable foods.


  1. ^ Pethiyagoda, R. 1996. Belontia signata. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. < Archived June 27, 2014, at the Wayback Machine>. Downloaded on 17 March 2014.
  2. ^ Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2014). "Belontia signata" in FishBase. February 2014 version.