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TOPIC: Newbie and need help!

Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71936

  • Sfergy
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Hi all, i'm new to the forum and for any replies please assume i am a complete novice when it comes to fish keeping.

I have had my 200L Fluval tank now for around 1 year and i decided to put some bigger fish in so it looked like there was something in there as my Plec, 2 x neons and swordtail just made it look empty.

I went to a local fish shop and after pointing at fish i thought looked good and the guy telling me they could go in my tank and together, i walked away with 2 x silver dollars (about 4in each) 1 x Angel (about 3in) and a baby albino Oscar (about 4in).

I quickly learnt that the Oscar did not like my old fish as he ate them all within the first 2 days, but he does get on with my other new fish and i learnt that my tank is probably to small as i am constantly battling with high nitrates.

So i need help. i'm at the point where i want to take the next step with this hobby and start taking it more seriously (we all start somewhere) after much negotiation i've managed to talk my wife into getting a bigger tank and i have found one that i like (more importantly she likes) and even better it fits perfectly.

so my first question is before i make any large purchases is - is a 500l tank adequate for keeping these fish for there life span as i do not want to have to upgrade again? This is the tank i am looking at www.shirleyaquatics.co.uk/aquarium-suppl...ab-white/awaazh1200w but not from that shop as i've managed to find it much cheaper.

My next question - The tank is a massive step up for me as i currently use an internal filter and heater and this new one comes with a sump and everything which is what is drawing me to it as i do not want to have to spend extra money on extra things. Are sumps good? Are they easy to maintain? Is this tank worth the money?

Thank you in advance for any help with this.
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71937

  • toom
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Hello

From me a clear "no". The volume is on an adult Oscar with Silver dollars and some side stock that may get eaten in the Future on the absolut bare minimum but the dimentions are not adequate for larger fish. There is no room for big fish to get along.

This setup would be ok for a group of 6 to 12 Angel fish with 30 to 60 Neon fish, maybe some Maroni or other smaller cichlids with your plecos (if they are not commen ones or species that grow larger than lets say between 7 to max 10 inches) but not for big cichlids.

The length and deep of the tank is basicly the absolute minimum for an single Oscar and the hight is not that important until it's not below 50 cm for them. If you want big fish long and deep is the way to go like something in the 6 x 2 x 2 or 6.5 x 2 x 2 region.
We need to stop talking about the people as if they were the crown of creation.
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71941

  • Rob167
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that tank in the pic is also going to be very hard to clean substrate so deep.
for oscars you want at least 6 feet long- 125 Gallon min.. especially with anything added.

i have 4 Silver dollars, and oscar and a pleco in a 180, but thats with two large canister filters, two large HOB filters and 80% water change every saturday.

deep tanks like that look great- not sop easy to clean. I had a deep 56G tall tank and it was a pain to clean.

if $$ is an issue, spend time on whatever craigslist/ebay programs near you. amazing deals show up all the time.
180 oscar/silver $$s/pleco
75 female JD
125 Malawi
29 Serpae / danios/ angel
10g dwarf gaurami / Neon tetras

98 lb Irish cream Labrador retriever
200 year old miserable jack Russell rat thing ( came with wife)- RIP 6/11/17
2 english bulldogs
9 year old- for sale- doesn't do chores-
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71943

  • Oscarmon
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+1
On tank dimensions. It will definitely be hard to reach the solid discharge from the fish al the way at the bottom. And, as toom said, it should be longer.

Sumps would probably be better/worse depending on the media in them and the quality. I've heard of sumps that break and flood (without check valves and/or reverse siphoning). All of which can be prevented. Did it say the gph on the sump? I go by the 10x turnover rule, so it should be at least 1000 gallons per hour. Otherwise I wouldn't go for it. I recommend canister filters because, as far as I know, they're easier to maintain.
And if the aquarium seems to be too big for one canister filter you can use two or even three before it becomes out of hand.
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71944

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You've already been given good advice. As mentioned by others, for Oscars you want to keep the nitrates at 20ppm or below to optimize their life expectancy. My experience is that a 125 gallon (475 liters) enables that without having to change 80%+ water every 2-3 days. Volume isn't the only important consideration when deciding on a tank, width is also important. Oscars benefit from lots of width in which to swim. I think 6 feet (180 cm) or wider is optimal.....all of this for a single Oscar.

Some successfully keep Oscars is smaller tanks but, in my opinion, anything under 75g (285 liters) isn't allowing your Oscar to reach it's potential....even then it'll require lots of attention.

I suggest using canister filters supplemented by hang on the back style filters. Although I've never implemented one, I've researched sumps quite a bit, IMO they are a lot to bite off until the fishkeeper feels like they're no longer a newbie fishkeeper. You also need to take a lot of care to ensure your sump doesn't overflow and not only cause a lot of physical damage but also create a lot of issues with your wife.
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71946

  • Ernie14
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I have 2 12inch Oscars in a 5x2x2 150 gallon and could not imagine them in anything smaller.
Another consideration would be power consumption on a bigger tank. A couple of canister filters or 1 large one, maybe a couple of hob filters two 300 watt heaters, a larger light, air pump it all starts to add up.
Then there is your time commitment, I spend over an hour on Saturday doing a fin level water change plus tank and filter maintenance.
Not trying to talk you out of a bigger tank but preparing you for the commitment and cost you will incur.
As always we are here to help and can guide you if needed.
150 gallon 2x Tiger Oscars
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71948

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Thank you to you all for the replies and for your advise.

It has definitely opened my eyes into how much work the Oscar can be.

One of the reasons i chose the tank in my post was due to the LFS doing credit which made it easier to spend that much on a tank and set up by paying monthly. After reading your comments and looking on their store the closest the provide is the same tank at 150cm (foot). but as you have advised that is still on the smaller spectrum required and it is still a deep tank. so i am going to have to try and find a shop that will do credit and sell the tank required and scan through my local for sale sites also.

My issue is i foolishly already have the fish. i feel like the LFS set me up to fail, i wont be going back to that one. Now i have the fish ideally i would like to keep them as my chose was the Oscar as i liked its personality but to get that i had to compromise on "prettier fish" so if i had to get rid of any it would be the Oscar and i would ideally like to keep it and accommodate it. Also space is an issue 120cm (4 foot) was my max allowed length before i start to cover up windows. i can move the tanks position but i will have to work on my wife as it means changing the room around. but once i start saying to her fish health, longevity, ect i'm sure she will cave.
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 4 weeks ago #71950

  • Oscarmon
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Look out if you're looking for a "pretty fish" tankmate. If you go out and buy some random peacock cichlid ( for example) There will probably be aggression issues.
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 3 weeks ago #71974

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keeping a tank with nothing but one oscar is not boring.
while several tanks in my house are full,, and lots of fish.. the personality of an oscar is like a dog in a hot tub.. they know who you are and care you are there.
very rewarding.
180 oscar/silver $$s/pleco
75 female JD
125 Malawi
29 Serpae / danios/ angel
10g dwarf gaurami / Neon tetras

98 lb Irish cream Labrador retriever
200 year old miserable jack Russell rat thing ( came with wife)- RIP 6/11/17
2 english bulldogs
9 year old- for sale- doesn't do chores-
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Newbie and need help! 3 months 3 weeks ago #71975

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So true. My O is all alone and loves it! His only company are zebra snails (cleanup crew) which he likes to bully.
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