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Main Index > Detailed Fish Profiles > The Cichlids > Oscar
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This page will give a completely detailed profile of the selected fish, from A to Z. The profiled fish will be chosen randomly by Badman, and will come from the complete genre of tropical fish. New profiles are added on a regular basis. If you would like to submit a profile for the site please contact me. Don't forget to let us know you experiences with this fish by filling out the




Astronotus ocellatus




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Please remember that the following comments are personal experiences and may or may not apply to your setup. Use them as guide to help better understand your fish, like us all individuals will behave differently under different circumstances.


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From: ca
Oscars are fun and easy, if you have sufficient space and filtration. As with all creatures, individuals can have varied attitudes. Hopefully, your oscar won't be one that's aloof or destructive. An oscar can destroy your heaters/filters/pumps/plants and anything else in the tank. This could be dangerous to both of you. Or, if he pushed a large rock into the glass sides, it could be messy. Here's how sturdy they are: I inherited a 10" albino from a friend when I had never kept fish in my life. I knew nothing about them. I transported it to my house in a garbage can with some water, in the back of my pick-up. I set up a 30 gallon tank with fresh tap water and a new bag of rocks on the bottom. I dumped him in and added an emperor 280 backfilter. ta da! He survived. No cycling. No expensive set up. No UGF. No acclimation. Nothing. He was despondent and lethargic for a few days. And I did learn that I needed to add a chlorine remover to the water. But soon after, he was energetic and eating pellets out of my hand. A great fish and a new family pet! The only real problem with oscars is their size. The albino I had easily outgrew the 30-gal, and later, the 55 gallon tank that I put him in. He's easily ready for an 80-gallon tank because I want him to have room to "swim", not just pace back & forth slowly. And, being such messy eaters and waste producers, he outgrew the emperor 280, and I added on an additional emperor 450. But even that wasn't enough, because it required that I do water changes 2-3 times a month and clean out the filters once a month. So, I'm not going to rely on 2 emperor back-filters any more. In the 80-gallon tank, I'm going to remove the two backfilters and add a powerful eheim canister filter that should keep the water crystal clear and the canister only gets cleaned a couple times a year. I'm into low-maintenance, low-cost tanks with happy fish. Since the oscar, I've added a planted tank and am working on a saltwater tank.

From: Rich
I have 2 oscars in a 120 gallon tank. Given the potential size of these fish, the 4 foot length and 2 foot wide tank is really ideal for them. Right now they share it with a 13" channel cat but as they grow from their current 7" state he will have to move. One of my oscars is really aggressive. He was the first fish that I bought and I bought him because he had a fellow oscar hanging out of his mouth. He tends to be more aggressive. I think that oscar's aggressiveness depends on their individual personalities. As stated before, they all have different personalities. Mine like to be rubbed. Often they are seen fighting their reflection in the glass and flaring their fins. He can be hand fed and his bites don't hurt. Once when removing a rock that marked his territory, he bit in his not nice way that was more painful. Out of the many fish I have owned these are definetely the most fun due to their personality.

From: Stephan
I have two oscars approximately 12 inches in length each for six years now. They are the best fishes to mind. The maintenance of the tank is fairly easy. They breed very often and eat almost anything.

From: Darin Soares
3rd time back on this site. I just got a 60 gallon tank with two 6 inch red oscars both male. My 60 is plain with one slate and golfball.I feed them hikary cichlid gold pellets and once a month feeder fish. Both of them could be hand fed because I taught them that.So far no problems.Well gotta go,laters.

From: Cassie
My boyfriend and I both have Oscars, I agree that they may not be as aggressive as people have claimed, but they still are territorial. We had two that weren't more than an inch in size difference, but the larger one attacked the other until it was dead, they were both between 5 and six inches in length.

From: Lee
I started with one oscar that was 1 inch long and now its about 7 inches, grew very fast, anyway I think that if you raise one oscar by itself, when it grows up it would be more aggressive than if you raised it with other fishes, especially other oscars.

From: fadly
Oscars are easy to breed but sometimes they could get to your nerves as they release feces often. I recommend this fish for beginners as they can adapt to almost all kinds of water conditions.

From: Jackie
I have four oscars in a huge aquarium, I have had them since they were a little under a inch, now they are 41/2 inches long and I love them. They are extremely smart, love to beg for food and love to eat. I love them as well. Yes they break my heaters, yes they pull plants out of the ground, but I don't regret ever getting them.

From: CaSeY
I have 2 oscars and a number of other smaller fish and they usually dont mess with any other fish even fish half thier size.A very great fish!

From: Kale
I've got a large oscar. He lives in a 55 gallon tank, alone. I've had him for around five years. Frequent water changes are a must, he's a slob. I don't make regular checks of ammonia levels, there will be ugly piles of decaying food on the bottom long before the fish's health is in danger. He used to eat just about everything I threw in, worms, grasshoppers, feeder fish, vegetables, and more, but now he refuses everything but Hikari Chiclid Gold pellets. This is too bad, because I suspect that insect and crustacean shells and fish bones are probably important in an oscar's diet. My oscar is very charming and friendly, likes hang out near people who are sitting beside the tank, and will allow me to stroke him when I'm cleaning. He hates to be netted, but if I empty the tank so the water is not much deeper than he is, he will allow me to pick him up in my hands without struggling or thrashing. Oscars do not like to live in brightly lit tanks, and the tank light should be hooded to create some shaded areas. I don't have a proper tank hood and light mine with a shop-light with full spectrum bulbs. I use the flat cover of the tank as a plant table. The plants like the humidity and provide a mottled shade for the fish.







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