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TOPIC: Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal?

Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69209

  • coreilly1
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I have had my Oscar for two weeks now and it appears that he is shy/afraid of me. Any suggestions? He is eating and coloring looks good.
Thanks for any help in advance.
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69211

  • bloodmourn
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What are you water parameters? Ammonia? Nitrite? Nitrate?

How did you cycle the tank? What size is the tank?
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69212

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Parameters are normal. 54 gallon tank. And this had been a community tank. Drained cleaned and left media balls in the wet/dry filter for good bacteria.
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69214

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:welcome:

parameters normal means nothing to us. We prefer numbers

What are your ammonia, nitrite and nitrate numbers? What kind of filtration do you use? What temp do you keep it at?

Oscars are known sulkers, they can sulk up to a month.
65 gallon
2 yellow tail aceis
1 male cobue peacock
3 female cobue peacocks
1 male blood dragon
2 Synodontis lucipinnis

5.5 Gallon
Delta tail betta

The psych meter has gone from sane to insane.
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69215

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coreilly1 wrote:
Parameters are normal. 54 gallon tank. And this had been a community tank. Drained cleaned and left media balls in the wet/dry filter for good bacteria.

Did you test with a liquid test? Or did you test with strips? Strips are not really accurate.
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69217

  • toom
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How big is the fish?

Small Oscars are known to act shy and hiding alot until they eat what dissapear till they grow out and get used to there tank.

It is also possible that your fish just don't adjust to your tank size. A 54G is very small for a big fish and depending on the fishs personality it is possible he becomes very aggressive or shy if there is for example a very small terretory or nothing to hide propper.

Other points after water parameters could be anything from tank placements, vibrations from a wooden floor and so on.
I has for example once a construction side right infront of my house as they renewed the Street lightings. FoR this they opened the side walk with an sledge hammer on an excavator. My Snakeheads in this times was going nuts by hiding or try to jumping out the tanks. After the workers stpped at 5 PM they clamed down and after the next day it was going on till the construction side was around 60 feet away up the street.
We need to stop talking about the people as if they were the crown of creation.
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69222

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Tested water via liquid tests. ph was at 6.5 so I added some ph up, nitrite was perfect at 0ppm, ammonia was high at .50ppm and nitrate was off the charts. For the ammonia and nitrate levels I used a double dose of Prime. Will do a partial water change asap. The tank is a 54 gallon with a wet/dry filter. Water temp currently at 76.3.
Thanks for adding me to the group and for your advice.
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69223

  • Northstar5
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Do not alter Ph with chemicals. 6.5 is bang on perfect for Oscars. Prime has no effect on nitrate, nitrate is managed via water changes. Change enough volume and a frequency to keep well under 20ppm. In 54g you will have to hit it twice a week. Oscar will outgrow the tank in about 6 months. Boost your temp up to 80-82 over the next few days. Mid 70's is a bit cool for Amazon based cichlids
1600gals of South and Central American cichlids. Some with just a "wee" bit of attitude!
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69236

  • beretta96
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To expand on what Northstar5 suggested.....

For the sake of illustration, let's say your nitrate is at 100ppm. If you do an 80% water change and your tap water contains 0ppm nitrate, you'll have 20ppm nitrate immediately after your water change. If you immediately do another 80% water change, you'll then have 4ppm nitrate. Another immediate 80% water change will leave you with .8ppm nitrate.....make sense? Remember to always use Prime or some other type of water conditioner whenever you add tap water to the tank.

What is your water change schedule? Why I ask is to guard against the possibility of your fish suffering from osmoregulatory shock. Osmoregulatory shock is a condition where your fish's body has become accustomed to a certain amount of toxicity in the water. Exposing them to clean water all of a sudden can throw their body into shock. It's not unlike what humans can experience if they go from being in ~100* temperatures for an extended time and then immediately go into 50-60* water....it can easily throw your body into shock. It's the same concept but for fish and toxic water.

If your fish has been in the toxic water you've described for an extended period of time, I'd slowly work into large water changes. Start by doing a 30-40% water change every 2-3 days for a week or so, then move to 40-60% water changes every 2-3 days for another week or so, then you can go to an 80%+ water change moving forward - doing water changes at an interval to keep the nitrates at 20ppm or less.

I know toom asked you how big your Oscar is. I don't recall seeing your response. I've got a ~11-12" Oscar as the lone occupant of a 125g tank. I change 95% of the water every 5 days to keep nitrates in the 10-20ppm range. That said, there's more reason to frequently change a lot of water than just nitrate management. Once your fish isn't in danger of osmoregulatory shock, you can never give your fish too much clean water. It's like humans getting clean air to breathe....the cleaner, the better.

Have you tested your tap water for ammonia and nitrate? Your ammonia reading concerns me.
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Shy Oscar. It's been 2 weeks. Is this normal? 8 months 1 week ago #69243

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It's not just water parameters. It's a big change coming from a small tank with other baby oscars in a pet store, to a vast 54 gallon "ocean"

Try things like keeping the light off more or covering a side of your tank. As a baby, you should load your tank with hiding spots, but start removing them as he gets bigger.

Also try using dither fish; their interactions with an o are always fun to watch. Get about 8-10...
- Giant danios
- Large zebra danios
- black skirt / white skirt tetra


Tank mates: Instead of dithers, if you KNOW you can provide a larger tank in the future, get him some tank mates (avoid pairs)
- severums
- chocolate cichlids
- convicts
- firemouths
- silver dollars (need schools)
- blood parrots
- banded leporinus

- jack dempseys
- veija synspilums
- other oscars
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