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  1. Friends for Oscar
    by tomk-at-westgac3 ()
  2. Friends for Oscar
    by dipakb-at-sco.COM (Dipak Basu) ()
  3. Oscars
    by (mark stephens) ()
  4. Oscars
    by (Stanton) ()
  5. Oscars
    by (Stanley Krystek) ()
  6. Tankmates for an Oscar?
    by (KUTTY) (13 Dec 91)
  7. Oscar Cichlid:
    by (Grant Gussie) (Thu, 06 Jul 1995)
  8. Oscar
    by "J. Michael Foster" <> ()

Friends for Oscar

by tomk-at-westgac3

>I have a 26-gal aquarium with a single 3.5" tiger oscar, who is very tame
>with people, but beat up the other Oscar in the tank so badly that it had
>to be removed.

>I'd like to add some more compatible fish to the aquarium.  The advice I've
>got suggests two or three tinfoil barbs at least as big as the Oscar, and
>smaller African or South American cichlids like firemouths or bumblebees.
>A total of six to seven fish seem the limit.

>Any suggestions or disagreements?  How would bala sharks fit in?

I once raised an oscar and had a similar problem. In my circumstances, I had to
move him(?) from a 30-gal to a 55-gal due to the growing pains 8-). I
introduced into the 55-gal, goldfish too large for the oscar to eat and let
them get acclimatized. Then I introduced the oscar about a month afterward.
The oscar did not bully or attack the goldfish. As a matter of fact, I gave
the setup to my friend and he had cats in the house. The first night alone,
my friend heard some splashing and decided to investigate. One of his "toms"
decided to go fishing. In response, the oscar (about 14 inches long) got
ahold of the cat's paw and dragged the cat in the 55-gal. Afterward, no cats
went fishing!

Hopefully, this might help with your situation. (No the oscar did not eat the
cat, but the cat got the surprise of it's life!)

Thomas Kocourek                               : UUCP on an OS9 system,
UUCP: ...!{emory,gatech}!wa4mei!westgac3!tomk : Multitasking in 512K---
LD: (404) 834-4685                            : What a concept!

Friends for Oscar

by dipakb-at-sco.COM (Dipak Basu)

In article <5-at-westgac3> tomk-at-westgac3 writes:
>Hopefully, this might help with your situation. (No the oscar did not eat the
>cat, but the cat got the surprise of it's life!)
Oscars are such fun :-)

Once, when my daughter was trying to feed our oscar, Rossi, he watched her
coming and jumped right out of the tank in excitement.  Luckily for them
both, he fell back into the water.  Needless to say, my duaghter refuses
to feed Rossi now.


>Thomas Kocourek                               : UUCP on an OS9 system,
>UUCP: ...!{emory,gatech}!wa4mei!westgac3!tomk : Multitasking in 512K---
>LD: (404) 834-4685                            : What a concept!


by (mark stephens)

I'll try...

In article <>, writes:
> My brother seems convinced that he needs an oscar (he has never
> kept fish before).  I finally managed to convice him that he
> should as least start out with something else to get the tank
> cycled.  He has a ten gallon tank right now, but claims that he's
> willing to buy a larger one when needed.  I would greatly appreciate
> any info you could provide me on this type of fish since I'd hate to
> see any fish suffer.  I'll forward all info to my brother.
> How long will an Oscar be happy in a ten gallon?
Not long at all... a month, two or three?  They eat like pigs
and get big like 'em too.

> What size of aquarium will he need for an adult oscar?
I kept one in a 20H out of ignorance.  I would not do so now.
A 30 might do.  See what others say.

> What should he feed them and about how much will it cost?
Any think... no kidding.  My colege Oscar ate her cannary when the
stupid bird, which she would lit fly around, tried to get a drink from
an opening in the glass top.  POP!  Oscar did not succeed but it didn't
do much for the bird.  I have feed cichlid food, earthworms, cat food,
fingers, ...

> Any suggestions for other kinds of fish?
Not with an Oscar.  If your brother is into oscar types of fish, there
are lots of smaller, similar fish which are hardy and have interesting
habits.  Most of the cichlids (the group to which oscars belong) make
good pets.  Perhaps other will advise.

> Any other info more than welcome
> By the way, I do have a good fishbook but the index doesn't list oscars,
> what is their scientific name?  What type of fish are they?  All I know is
> that they're carnivourous (sp?)
Don't know the sci name but they are cichlids, they eat meat and have
a nasty disposition toward other fish.  To humans, they tend to behave
like puppy dogs.  If you can't find Oscars, that book is suspect.


> Thanks
> B Westergren


by (Stanton)

In article <Jul14.164048.64763-at-yuma.ACNS.ColoState.EDU>, (joe carlson) writes:
> In article <>, writes:
>> [...]
>> How long will an Oscar be happy in a ten gallon?
>> What size of aquarium will he need for an adult oscar?
>> What should he feed them and about how much will it cost?
>> Any suggestions for other kinds of fish?
>> Any other info more than welcome
>> By the way, I do have a good fishbook but the index doesn't list oscars,
>> what is their scientific name?  What type of fish are they?  All I know is
>> that they're carnivourous (sp?)

Observations and opinions on the cichlid Astronotos Ocellatus,
aka oscar.

On tank size:
   You can keep a small oscar in a 20L for 1-2 years.  Then
it'll need more room, he'll start to butt the tank walls and
stare gloomily at the outside world with those big sad eyes.

On tank mates:
   You may have better success with early mates.  My oscar
gets along with all the fish in my tank (a salvini, 2 jack
dempseys, 1 pleco) all of whom have been in there from the
beginning, when they were each about 1" long. Now in fact
the salvini is the boss - he constantly harrasses the oscar,
who shows enormous patience.  When the salvini is too obnoxious,
the oscar opens his mouth WIDE and charges the salvini, but just
to back him off.

On food:
   Live goldfish, freeze dried krill, earthworms, ham,
grasshoppers, fingers, Tetra Tabi-Mins are favorites.  An
exuberant eater, will not hesitate to jump out of the water
if victuals are sighted.  Does not like Tetra Doro Menu floating
fish sticks or flake food of any kind.

On Intelligence:
   All day yesterday, a piece of plant was drifting through
the tank including through the preferred corner where the oscar
usually hangs out.  Finally he clamped the plant firmly in his
mouth, swam to the farthest end of the tank, released it, and
swam back to his corner.

On visitors:)
   To keep people away, tell them the oscar is a pirhanna,
who will strip the flesh from their fingers in under 10 seconds.
They'll recoil in horror, whilst you laugh to yourself knowing
that it would take your oscar well over 20 seconds.

STanton Loh


by (Stanley Krystek)

I have kept and raised 2 oscars in a 10 for 3-4 years before I
transfered them into a 20 and then a 55 gal.  They can grow to
6 inches in a 10 and if there are only 2 I don't feel that he
would be hurting the fish, especially if he buys 2 inch fish
to start with.  After they outgrow the 10 gal he can trade them
or givbe them to a local shop, we receive many oscars, and other
cichlids that way.

Oscars will eat you can raise them entirely on
flake food, but they will do better if their diet includes freeze
dried and frozen foods.  If you have the time, space and money,
oscars are known for their appetite and they love live foods,
like feeder fish (guppies, other livebearers, and goldfish).

Good Luck....sorry for the late posting just catching up on my mail....


<>                                                                           <>
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From: (Bill Konrad)
Subject: Re: [F] Feeding Oscars
Keywords: feeding cost, oscars
Date: 22 Jul 92 03:03:00 GMT

In article <> (Ilana Jayne Rosenshein) writes:
>I am thinking about getting an oscar, but I have a few questions first.
>The main question is how much do they eat? I know they eat alot, and
>I don't have a problem with that, but  how often should you feed it? 
>How do you know when the fish is hungry?  

Oscars are gluttons with truely ravenous appetites. Especially young
oscars will keep their bellies bulging if able to do so. A friend of
mine had a small oscar which once had a guppy in it's mouth and
somehow managed to fit two more in at the same time! How it managed to
catch them, I don't know. 

To make matters worse, they are endearing beggars, and will eagerly do
anything to cajole you into giving them another morsel. Mine would
often jump out of the water to get the food before it reached the

When very young, I'd feed mine three times a day. When he got bigger,
I fed him just twice a day with only occasional treats. 

Oscars also grow VERY fast as well. Mine grew from a baby oscar (1 1/2")
to approximately 6" in just four months. 

However you don't need to feed them that much. They can certainly get
by on less, though it may stunt their growth somewhat. 

>Also, could someone give me
>a rough estimate of how much it will cost a month to feed the fish?
>I have the money for a tank, etc, but I don't want to get the fish and 
>end up starving it to death, due to lack of funds/poor planning.

I fed my oscar a variety of foods. The staple food was Hikari pellets.
These are fairly inexpensive when you buy them by mail order. I'd
supplement the diet occasionally with live guppies (maybe once a
week--10-20, though other fish in the tank with oscar also ate them),
some frozen foods (brine srimp and beef heart, though oscar quickly
got too big to bother with then brine shrimp), and the Tetra floating
food sticks for cichlids (I think they were DoroMin and DoroGreen). My
oscar was not at all picky. He ate everything with gusto, though
individual fish may differ in that regard. So all in all, unless you
go all out with store bought live foods, it shouldn't be all that
expensive to feed an oscar (though that's relative I guess). 

All I can say is don't scrimp on getting large tank for the oscar with
lots of filtration. They're messy eaters as well as ravenous. 

But oscars are IMHO, the most interesting of all fish. Enjoy.
Bill Konrad 

Tankmates for an Oscar?

by (KUTTY)
Date: 13 Dec 91
Newsgroup: rec.aquaria

In article <>, (Bill Konrad) writes...

>cichlids. However, I don't know about compatibility and am looking for
>suggestions. Geophagus juripari seems to be very interesting. Or some
>Cichlasoma species such as the chocolate, firemouth, or convict. 

Most of these fish make OK companions for Oscars. Chocolates and
Severums are probably the best. They all have roughly the same 
temprament. Juruparis are too peaceful to be housed with Oscars,
especially a mean one.
>How would angelfish fare with the oscar (and possible others)? Seems

Very poorly.

>How many cichlids of these types/sizes could comfortably fit in the
>aquaria I'm interested in? I realize, that eventually the oscar could
>grow large enough to take a 29g alone, but that would be a ways down
>the road.

Nope that wouldnt be way down the road. A 2" Oscar can ourgrow a
29-gal. tank in 2 months if well fed. This tank is WAY TOO SMALL for
Oscars. Convicts will probably be OK. FIremouths too.

>Any suggestions??
Yes. With cichlids, think BIG tank, few fish, hiding places and
lotsa water changes.

>Bill Konrad

                                       Vinny Kutty

Oscar Cichlid:

by (Grant Gussie)
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 1995
Newsgroup: alt.aquaria

In article <3tb3t2$>, (COV )

> Hi,
> I have been reading so much about the Oscar Cichlid lately.  These fish
> seem to be the one that I might fall in love with.  I can find
> inforamtion on them, but no real facts that tell me how to take proper
> care of them.
There are books on oscars, but no recent ones that I have seen, and the
ones that I have seen are not so great really.

> What type of water tempature do they like, I have read anywhere from
> 75-83 Degrees Ferenhight.  Also, what type of PH water tempature do
> they like?  I have herd that t hey cannot stand water under 7.0 PH and
> it makes there fins rot!  So should I keep it up higher?
Oscars are very adaptable since they have been bred in captivity for dozens
of generations. Any reasonable pH from 6.5 to 8.3 is fine, as is any
reasonably low to mildly high hardness. Water chemistry is simply not an
issue with them as long as it is stable. Soft acidic conditions are however
susceptible to sudden pH drops when dealing with big messy fish like
Oscars, so the soft water areas require closer attention to water changes
and bigger filters than one can get away with in more alkaline areas. Any
temperature in the quoted range (or a little lower) is fine.

> I called the pet store small Oscars sell for around $10 a piece, Larger
> Oscars fo for $15 and up to $60.

That seems awfully high for a small oscar...about $5 for a tiger small
oscar to $30 for a small albino is what I would tend to see.

> I have genereal ideas but I can't find any books that gives you a
> concise recommendation to all of the needs of the great Oscar.
Provide at least 50 to 70 gallons of water per pair. But putting two
strange oscars together often results in the death of one, so keeping them
in pairs is difficult. It is much better to raise the fish together from
babyhood. If you want to be reasonably certain of getting a mating pair,
you'll need about 6 oscars though, which means a big tank. A 100+ gallon
tank with six small oscars is best if you are serious about raising them,
but you should still expect to lose at least one to fighting. A school of
tinfoil barbs or other large barbs or large silver dollars are good as tank
mates if you have enough room. A large pl*co or Ancistrus is also required.

> With the things I read about this fish I am suprised that everyone
> dosn't own an Oscar!
Err...are you serious? I love oscars, but they are 1) huge 2) feisty 3)
swimming bulldosers. The question is why would anyone still find them
appealing given their anti-social tendencies.

> I have made up my mind about my fish tank Oscar I will get, the only
> thing I hate is that I can't get any plants for the tank.
Donkey fertiliser. You can (and I have) succesfully kept large cichlids
with plants. Cichlid tanks benefit from plants as much as any other. Just
bury an eggcrate just below the surface of the gravel, and use a strongly
rooted tough plant like anubius or valisneria. Putting the plants in
terra-cotta pots is also a good idea. Both annubius and valisneria require
bright light (> 2 watts per gallon) so some floating cover plants like
riccia is also a good idea. Provide valisneria thickets and a large piece
of driftwood for cover and a school of dither fish (such as tinfoil barbs)
and everyone will be reasonably happy. Once valisneria is well established,
you can use silver dollars as tank mates since even though they are plant
eaters they dont eat val as fast as it can grow.

> I do need to get some PH keeper stuff though sot hat the water never
> drops below 7.0 PH.  

Do NOT do this. Ph stabilisers contain phosphates and should be avoided.
ALL chemicals (except decholrinators and salt) should be kept as far away
from you aquarium as possible. Keep your mechanical filter clean and change
about 50% of the water weekly and you'll be fine. Get an automatic water
changer since you are talking about a lot of water. Don't worry too much
about chlorine, oscars are tough...just add some dechlorinator directly to
the tank if your water is highly chlorinated. Otherwise, rely on the
organics in the water to bind the chlorine added with the water changes.

> See I have four nice size pieces of driftwood in
> the tank, one guy say I should leave them in to give the oscar a sense
> of territory and another says I should take them out, so Oscar can get
> his full size.  What do you suggest?
Leave them in. Your pl*co needs them to hide in during the day and will
chew on them.

internet email:
www home page:


by "J. Michael Foster" <>
Date: Mon, 25 Nov 1996 05:03:24 -0800

The whole set of pages on Oscars was entertaining.  The only thing is,
Oscar can be taught to eat anything (whether it moves or not) I prefer
to feed mine beefheart, trout pellets and small fish as a treat.  If
convinced it's his diet, Oscar will eat primarily trout pellets which
are quite a bit cheaper than any other form of food.  

I've raised these tank-busters since 1975 and have a varying degree of
sucess or failure with them.  Most Oscars are best kept with fish either
smaller and more vicious or larger and more placid fish.  This year I
have only one Oscar who is being a pain in my "ear" and can only be kept
with a medium-to-large Jack Dempsey and a very large Pacu.  When the
Oscar gets too pushy, I put him in "jail" (a very small tank) to punish
him and when the Dempsey gets too overbearing I do the same to him.  The
only fish that doesn't like the caves I built (shale glued together with
silicone) is the Pacu.

Oscars love to be talked to and can tell when you are talking to them
from across the room.  Give him a pet-name and he'll respond quite

I've built special tanks specially for breeding purposes for these guys
in excess of 400 gallons and the only trouble I had with plants and
rocks was figuring out how to anchor them down.

As far as jumping out of the tank, well that is very common for an oscar
especially when he thinks it's feeding time and you've got him some

J. Michael Foster

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