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01-10-2009, 08:48 PM #1
Common Name: Oscar, Velvet Cichlid
Scientific Name: Astronotus Ocellatus
Size: up to 16"/40cm
Min. Tank Size: 60-75gallon minimum with a footprint of atleast 48"*18"
Origins: River systems of Peru and Brazil
Don't be fooled by that cute little 1" baby happily following your finger the length of the LFS aquarium, these fish grow large and grow fast. They also have a knack for eating unsuspecting tankmates that could fit in their mouths. Despite its popularity and common place in the petfish trade...these fish are by no means for everyone. They require a dedicated keeper who is willing to put up with their sometimes less than social behavior as well as the demands that come along with owning a large fish.
These fish come in several diffrent colors/patterns and fin types due to modern breeding....these include the olive, red, tiger, lutino, albino, and recently the lemon. These are available in the standard fin and a recent addition of the veil-tail. No matter color...all Oscars share the same general personality traits, they are all generally a food loving, happy to greet its owner, easily spooked large cichlid. Which at times can suddenly take on a temper and viciously defend its territory against anything that invades even its beloved owners hand.
The aquarium setup should be moderate to allow swimming room for this soon to be large fish. Do include some decor as Oscars when scared do like to be able to hide. Avoid sharp decor as when spooked the fish will dart threw the tank to get to its hiding place. Live plants should be added with caution, Oscars will sometimes take tank decorating upon themselves and re-arrange things as they see fit. When it comes to live plants its truely a trial and error sequence somtimes it works sometimes it doesnt.
Filtration is perhaps the most important aspect into keeping and Oscar, IME its best to use a Canister filter/Power filter combination. Circulating the tanks volume around 10X per hour. These are large fish which produce alot of wase and are often times messy eaters. Waterchanges should be done a minimum of 25% weekly to ensure a clean healthy aquairum system as oscars are prone to HITH disease which is brought on by poor water conditions and poor diet.
Feeding the Oscar is by no means difficult, they are rarely picky eaters and will voraciously eat anything that tips their water. A good high quality pelleted food should be the staple of the diet, its also safe to add chunks of raw shrimp and seafood as well as some lightly blanched fresh veggies to the diet. Frozen fish foods as well as Freeze dried foods also make for a good treat for the fish. Avoid feeding live feeder fish as these are poor in nutrition and have a potentially high risk for disease introduction into the aquarium. If you must feed live foods Crickets and Earthworms are much better options.
Oscars typically reach sexual maturity at around 8", obtaining a mated pair is best done by buying a group of young oscars and allowing them to grow up together and pick their own mates. Oscars have distinct personalities and just because one fish is male and the other female does not necessarily mean that they are compatible and thus will breed. Sexing these fish is not accurate by any means outside of venting these fish, there are several myths about shape of fins or girth of body and so on but these are definatly not always accurate. Generally speaking, male oscars will appear more long and slender compared to a similar sized female which will appear to be a more rounded fish.
In conclusion owning an Oscar is a very enjoyable experience. They are hardy and adaptive. Provide them with a good clean well filtered aquarium and a satisfactory diet and you will enjoy your Oscar for well over 15 years.
Last edited by MCHRKiller; 01-10-2009 at 08:52 PM.20G High-Tech Planted|50G High-Tech Planted|50G Goldfish Tank|56G Column Low-Tech Planted
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01-11-2009, 12:26 AM #2
Great article Jenn, nice job!!Mike!
01-11-2009, 12:28 AM #3
01-11-2009, 01:07 AM #4
That was excellent! What a great fish!Ray Your Freindly Neighborhood,Fully Mod-ified, Self-appointed Pic Hound!! Need pics!!!
Have you filled out your profile yet ?????????????
The Fabulous AC ebook Please read>http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/ebook.html
01-11-2009, 01:46 AM #5
Thanks everyone! :)20G High-Tech Planted|50G High-Tech Planted|50G Goldfish Tank|56G Column Low-Tech Planted
4x75Gs coming soon
01-11-2009, 06:30 AM #6
Good article! Nice one...Thar she blows!!!
11-11-2011, 04:05 AM #7
nice article... i use this as my reference....
this is one of the main reasons i signed up for this board.
11-19-2011, 05:20 AM #8
When I move out of a 2nd floor apt I so want to get a big tank and get an oscar. They are the only cichlid that I would ever want.
I like the fish that can easily become pets.Lots of tanks. Some tanks are planted. Fish include community and bettas.
2 Dachshunds. Angel (Red) and Cookie (Chocolate Dapple).
Shiny Things and Beauty the rabbits.
RIP Princess and Max the Dachshunds, Tiger and Ping Pong the rabbits, and all the fishes from when I was a newbie.
It is Ldoerr NOT Idoerr.
Black kitten named Midnight that was found 10/29/12
12-30-2010, 05:46 AM #9
I have had an Albino Tiger Oscar for a little over a year now. I bought it at 2 inches and is now 7.5 inches. I feed him frozen beef heart, frozen blood worms, cichlid pelets, and it likes to eat the algae waffers... I just transfered him into a 55 gallon from a 20 gallon today! The larger tank seems to be like a playground for it because it's swimming everywhere! I say it because I can't tell weather "it" is male or female due to the fact that I only have one Oscar. Now that I have 2 tanks, I'm going to grow another Oscar then add it to the larger tank with the Oscar I own now!55 Gallon, 20 Gallon, CICHLIDS ALL THE WAY! well, and plecos
12-30-2010, 07:00 AM #10
Unless you are ready to purchase a 125G aquarium minimum, like right now in the present...buying another Oscar is a very very bad idea. These fish are massive, properly housed they will easily exceede 12". Which your 55G is only 12" wide so you can see how that 1 fish alone in there will pose an issue, muchless 2. I would also be very concerned with stunting of an Oscar being housed in the confines of a 20G aquarium until it were over 7". How old is the fish? For your 20G you would be much better off with a convict.20G High-Tech Planted|50G High-Tech Planted|50G Goldfish Tank|56G Column Low-Tech Planted
4x75Gs coming soon