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tell me ANYTHING you know on Oscars:

Badmans Tropical Fish Message Center: archive: tell me ANYTHING you know on Oscars:-)
  

Newbie

Sunday, August 19, 2001 - 08:05 am
I am new to this hobby and so far have enjoyed every part of it. COuld someone please tell me how to take care of my oscar. The 1st day I got him I just about killed him as my ph was so bad it wasnt even on the chart. Thanks to the help of my petshop assistant she promptly kicked my butt and sett me up right. I am someone who kows NOTHING about fish and would love any info (No need to tell me I am a little ambitious starting out with an Oscar, I know) He seems happy though, I just think he could be happier. Thanks

  

FishheadJR

Sunday, August 19, 2001 - 09:51 am
Well, they eat like pigs, they'll eat even when they don't need to eat.They'll act like they're begging for food bye biting at the glass when you're near, Be sure not to overfeed them, give them about as much as they can eat in 5 minutes one or two times a day.
They get big and need lots of space, I'm building a 300 gallon tank for my pair of tigers.
they are very cool fish, lots of personality and they love goldfish..
very messy tho, need a good filter or two of them, I have 2 9 inchers in my 55 and have 2 emporer 400s on it to keep it clean.
mine grew from an inch to 9 inches in less than 8 months, so if you don't have a 55 gallon or larger, you'll be needing one soon..

  

jeff

Sunday, August 19, 2001 - 01:39 pm
okey dokey..recalling my cichlid days for help..fish head gave some good advise there too..now the oscar(astronotus ocellatus)..gets to be about 14" in size..so big tank needed!..I wouldn't put more than one in a min. 40gal tank..a 55 might house two..but the bigger the bettter I think for about for every 1" of oscar without tail,give it about 2.5gal per fish...ok temp about 78F and a ph of 7 or so should do..now as mentioned theses guys are canivores and messy eaters...you need good filtration,good waterchanges and maintaince going...you can feed them most anything from pellets,flakes and live food...maybe 2-3 times aday but do not over feed..these guy will beg for it so be carefull..tankbuddies?...well maybe convicts,firemouth or some other A. cichlids or a pleco...that's about it I thinks so hope that helped...

  

FishheadJR

Sunday, August 19, 2001 - 09:47 pm
the tank buddies I have for fatboy and slim (my 2oscars) are 2 small jack dempseys, 3 12" plecos, 4 colombian sharks, a striped raphael cat, and a lima shovelnose cat. everyone gets along just fine except the oscars bicker a lot cuz the tank is so small:>(
oscars will eat anything(almost) I feed mine goldfish occasionally, but main Tetra's Jumbomin cichlid fish food sticks, my oscars love these and my piranhas do too...

  

Newbie

Monday, August 20, 2001 - 02:41 am
THANNKYOUUU Guys for all your help, I appreciate it HEAPS!!
Umm one other little question (hope you dont mind) Are you for real when i read that you can fead an oscar GOLDFISH?? And if so, do you mean LIVE??...My Boyfriend thinks that is a really cool concept, Im not sure I got it right though.
Thanks again;-)

  

jeff

Monday, August 20, 2001 - 04:00 am
yes you can feed them live food ..infact some start to prefer it to pellets etc...remember live fish can carry transmitable diseases too.I live food tank is an option..goldfish can be feed up to 2-3 per day per oscar...if they are little guppies will work well...

  

Kick

Monday, August 20, 2001 - 09:18 am
Newbie, I don't know alot about oscars, but I will tell you what I do know. Yes, they do eat "live" food, guppies, worms, goldfish, etc. and are the worlds best waste producers. I did not see any mention of the size tank you have, but I certainly hope that it is large enuff to house even this one oscar. Anything smaller than a 75 is too small for them when they reach maturity. It is very hard to keep plants, live or plastic, as their main ambition in life is to root in the gravel tearing up any decor that may be in its way.

To be honest with you, especially if you know very little about the fishkeeping hobby (like the nitrogen cycle), the oscar is really not a good starter fish. You may want to stop, rethink this tank and learn all you can about the fishkeeping hobby. I have seen oscars literally break the glass on a tank trying to have room to move around. Good luck!

  

Bulkster

Tuesday, August 21, 2001 - 01:35 am
The best advice I can give you for oscars is:
Keep no more than one in a 55, two in preferably a 90, but a 75 may work.

Keep the number of tankmates down, this will cut back all the waste, and will help prolong turning your water into liquid hell, not to mention keep the algae down.

Remember, you don't need a pleco or any sort of catfish, and if you do get/have one, remember it needs food too. Most large plecos can't really live on the algae in the tank alone. Also, there is no such thing as a fish that eats and lives off of fish poop alone, except carp. But what can you really say about a fish whose name spells crap by simply moving a couple letters around?

As for live foods, they can be good once in a while, but getting your Oscars, or any cichlids, hooked on pellets is much cheaper than live food, a lot cleaner than most live food, and pellets don't introduce disease. My favorite live foods are earthworms and ghost shrimp. Earthworms are free.

Do your water changes. I work in a fish store, and lack of water changes is one of the biggest problem causers I see aside from overfeeding. Any less than once a month is too little. With Oscars, smaller weekly water changes and gravel vacs are probably a good idea.

Finally, be sure to thoroughly read all the other posts, and ask lots of questions before adding any other fish. Be sure they're compatible, and be sure to ask how large they'll get, and what they eat. Once again, I work in a fish store, and we get people who call everyday that want to bring back a fish that's "too big." A lot of places can't, or don't want to take in big fish, so be sure you're happy with what you've got, and be sure you have the room. DO a lot of research.

I hope this has been helpful.

  

Anonymous

Wednesday, August 22, 2001 - 03:44 pm
I have recently aquired two 2inch tiger oscars but I don't know much, if anything, about them and other than here, haven't been able to get any info on them. The tips here have helped but if anyone can tell me where their natural range is and any other useful care tips,such as how to tell the sexes apart it'd be great. Thanks.

  

jeff

Wednesday, August 22, 2001 - 10:23 pm
red tigh oscar (astronotus ocellatus) from the amazon river basin I believe..grows to about 12-14"..lives long to maybe 13yrs...ph 6.5-7..sexing is hard.. venting analysis the best but as far as I know females have rounder heads and look at little shorter,more rounded dorsal fins,males more brightly colored with spot circles that do not change with mood swings,some have dark spots at base of dorsal fins or may have red dots on fins and gill areas...all the other oscar info above applies to this one as well....

  

Anonymous

Thursday, August 23, 2001 - 02:37 pm
Thanks jeff, not that I can see any differences between the two but perhaps when they get bigger... I had no idea they live so long.

  

jen

Sunday, September 02, 2001 - 04:21 pm
I recently found out that my Oscar had a liking for albino frog legs : ( My son's albino frog was housed in with my oscar and athey got along great until one day we found him with the frog in his mouth. My advice is never put anything that will fit in his mouth in the tank!
lots of luck.

  

jillrainey

Wednesday, September 05, 2001 - 12:27 pm
I recently bought 2 Oscars, one is a nice Tiger. The other one is an Albino Tiger. The Albino, Acey, has black tinted fins. Just when I was getting used to its nice color, it became tinted black all over. I am wondering if anyone knows if this is a disease, or just a simple color change I shouldn't worry about. Otherwise the fish is just as active and happy as the other on.

 

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