View Full Version : Makes me wonder............

01-19-2007, 10:53 AM
There are 2 things in this hobby I just can't understand, one concerns Oscars so I'll post it here and the other I'll post elsewhere, here goes..............

I completely understand and agree that a 55g tank is the practical minimum tank size for an O, but I've always put that down to swimming room as much as bio-load issues. But every forum you go on, almost everyone tells you that it's 55g for each fish because of the bio-load, but my recent experience tells me that this just isn't true. I've got a 135 that's had an a pair of albino/lutino Os in it that are now fully fledged adults, for well over a year and tried very hard not to put anything else in there, due to advice given on these forums. Due to an accident ( cousin's kid broke a tank ) a while ago I had to throw my 'sub-adult' tiger and red Os in with them as a short term emergency measure. There was a bit of scuffling for the first 2 days and then everything calmed down. I liked the look of the tank with 4 Os in there so I decided to leave them for a while and keep my eye on them, even though I have now got a 100g for them just in case. It's been a couple of months now and all four are doing real well and the water params, well, I haven't done a PWC for a week and this morning I tested the water, and ammonia = 0, nitrites = 0, nitrates = 10!!! So in what is supposedly a massively over-stocked tank, I don't even need to do a PWC after a week (I still did one though). And yes the test kit is fine. So where did this rumour about tank size come from, or am I just some kinda freakish fish keeper? I have found that now there's more competition for food, hardly anything gets wasted and nothing comes back out through the gills or anything, but that can't be it surely?

01-19-2007, 01:52 PM
Your case sounds like an exception to the rule. My Oscar got too big for my 55g. At just over 12" his tail was bending awkwardly when he turned around. I found him a home in a bigger tank. If your fish are 8" or so, they may be fine. There may be problems down the line. Water problems tend to build slowly over time.

01-19-2007, 02:09 PM
I was waiting for someone else to reply to this before I commented

My nephew is a freak with fish, he has never cycled, he has had a number of fish, for long stretches, and never seems to lose them, He has never done as simple as a PH test, and I know that it comes out of the tap a bit over 8 here, if he buys a new fish, as long as shop tank is close to same temp he just puts them in water and all, then theres me here, cycle my tanks (maybe not long enough), worry about getting PH to about 7.5 mark, float my fish, and I lose a few from time to time, (though I have quite a few stayers), even he can't understand it, and hes been keeping fish about 10yrs, his biggest is a veiltail Oscar at least 8 inch long, very healthy and a great temprement, bought as an adult for $50 2 yrs ago.

So are some people just lucky?

01-19-2007, 02:13 PM
With the right filtration and water changes your current setup could work. Everyone has their own personal 'truth' about what is truly minimum, and many tend to go overkill for the sake of the fish. I think 4 in a 135 is fine, you could even add a few bottom cleaners if need be, like Synodontis eupterus, but they may get bullied. What are you feeding? What filtration do you have? What is your water change schedule? Where are/did you post the other question?

01-19-2007, 02:18 PM
Some people do seem to have "Dumb Luck". They can do everything wrong and still have great looking fish. My Dad had a pleco for 30+ years and never changed the water more then once a year (if that).

01-19-2007, 03:25 PM
I feede them Hikkari bio gold+, hikkari cichlid gold, frozen cichlid dinner, and brine shrimp pellets, not all at once obviously. They get the frozen stuff the night before water change day. Which is every Friday - about 50% or so.

Filtration is an external canister filter and 2 large internal power filters.

The other question I put in the General Aquarium section

Lady Hobbs
01-19-2007, 03:54 PM
Sounds to me you keep your tank in tip-top condition and that's a big plus working for you. Possibly the aggression issues is why many recommend the larger tanks. If YOU think your fish are doing fine and the water parms are good and they are happy fish, do what you think works for you.

01-19-2007, 04:33 PM
I've also heard the Bio-Gold + helps to stop nitrates creeping up so I wonder if that has anything to do with it. Don't suppose it hurts any

01-19-2007, 10:05 PM
I would cut out the Hikari Cichlid Gold, it is basically a lower quality one so it dilutes the nutrition in the Bio-Gold+. I personally woudl also cut out the frozen as well for the same reason. I feed my oscars Hikari Cichlid Bio-Gold+ and New Life Spectrum, and will cut out the Hikari when this bag is done. High quality foods have less waste in them so more is absorbed by the fish, less comes out as poop, less waste means less nitrates. The other reason is that the higher quality pellets don't seem to fall apart in their mouth and come out their gills, which breaks down into nitrates. So there are actually two ways high qulaity foods help reduce extra waste in the tank, and waste ends up as nitrates.

01-24-2007, 01:49 PM
I agree with you about the Cichlid Gold, however my littlest O just does not seem to recognise Bio Gold+ as food. The pellets seem too small for him so I feed him the Cichlid Gold large pellets and he loves them. He also gets most of the frozen stuff I put in there. I know I could force him to eat the other stuff, but why should he if he doesn't like them and the other stuff is still pretty healthy? It's funny at feeding time because his tank mates know the big red pellets aren't for them and they leave them alone.

01-25-2007, 03:37 AM
It's much better for his health to be on the Bio-Gold+ if not New Life Spectrum.

01-26-2007, 04:18 AM
Big success last night...........he finally tried one of the Bio Gold+ pellets and realised he liked those too!! As soon as you say something about these guys they make a fool of you :rolleyes: Now he's started eating them I'm not gonna give him a chance to change his mind, the Cichlid Gold bag is nearly empty now so no big deal to bin what's left.

I would love to try NLS but can't find it anywhere. IMHO though the Bio Gold+ is a fantastic food, better colours on my Os and I swear there's less nitrates with it.

01-26-2007, 02:12 PM
That is true, high quality foods tend to have less nitrates in the end. And it will help colors (but NLS will do an ever better job). You may have to get it online, but it is worth it for the NLS. I think it is available on amazon.com, the owner of NLS said something about that when I emailed him once.