Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

  • Marz
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Marz created the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

Hi, just joined!

I have two small juvenile Oscars and a juvenile Red Tailed Shark all in a 10 gal tank. I'm aware of ammonia levels being extraordinarily high because of tank parameters, but it is temporary. One of the Oscars will be donated soon and I will be upgrading to a 75 gal in a few days. I've read mixed reviews of keeping Red Tailed Sharks with Oscars. That's why when my girlfriend bought one thinking it was a rainbow shark at our local pet-smart, I agreed to take him off her hands when she realized she didn't really want him and try my luck.

My question is for anyone who has had a RTBS with their Oscar. How can I know for sure that he is eating properly? If he is a bottom feeder, he should scavenge the leftovers off of the floor, correct? Therefore his diet should consist of tropical fish flakes, freeze dried brine, and sinking algae wafers and whatever algae that's growing on the rocks. Yet, I don't think I've seen him eat and I've had him for about four days now.

Besides not eating he seems to be well adjusted. My albino is a bit territorial and chases him every now and then but he's usually swimming about the tank happily and he has plenty of places to hide. I've just never seen him swim up to get flakes I guess. :dry:

Any help, critique, warnings would be well appreciated. I know from what I've read on the forum that this is where the pro's are. So tear into me lol.
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Suprd71 replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

Hello and welcome to OFL. RTBS would likely become a lunch for Oscar once Oscar can fit it into its mouth. A 75g is what we recommend as the MINIMAL size tank to raise a single Oscar. No tankmates. As you seem aware, your 75 g tank must arrive VERY soon. I would concentrate on a single Oscar in the new 75, have substantial filtration, keep the water clean and you should enjoy your new fish.


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tehmole replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

hi and welcome.....suprd got you covered.....

let's see that picture...
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  • Darth Nandopsis
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Darth Nandopsis replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

"Besides not eating he seems to be well adjusted..."

That's probably from high ammonia and/or being bullied by the Oscar.

What's your definition of temporary? A 10Gl tank is beyond insufficient for an Oscar for any length of time.

Just a note on RTBS...I had one in a 90GL w/ a small pair of Festae.....while a beautiful fish, RTBS's are HIGHLY territorial, especially as they gain size.....they will fight incessantly w/ other fish when they grab a territory, & defend it against all comers. I had to remove the RTBS I had due to the fact he had bitten off more than he could chew, & would have wound up dead.

RTBS are poor scavengers, & will also compete w/ other fish in tank for food. (Just note that "bottom feeders" need to be fed as well...they will not do well eating the scraps from other fishes) They do grow to about 10", but if you want to keep an Oscar & a RTBS, you will need a far bigger aquarium than 75GL, more on the order of a 6' tank, minimum 125GL.

I would highly recommend you return these fish to the point of purchase ASAP, get the biggest tank you can afford, cycle the filters (get a canister & a large HOB like an Aquaclear 110), & then worry about stocking the tank. Keeping an Oscar in the confines of a 10GL tank for any length of time in poor water quality will make them susceptible not only to ammonia/nitrite poisoning but also to stunting & HITH. I would also recommend you obtain a book on keeping large cichlids & what that will entail.....Oscars are decidedly NOT a "beginner's fish", & you are not equipped to keep one (nor a RTBS) @ this juncture.

THOSE WHO REFUSE KNOWLEDGE ARE DOOMED TO FAIL.

WATER CHANGES ARE THE LIFEBLOOD OF THIS HOBBY. IF YOU DON'T BELIEVE SO OR SIMPLY DON'T FEEL LIKE DOING THEM, RE-HOME YOUR FISH, SELL YOUR AQUARIUM & FIND ANOTHER HOBBY, AS YOU WILL FAIL UTTERLY, COMPLETELY, & MISERABLY.
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DBLN8 replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

Welcome.

You don't mention filtration in your post, if you don't have a cycled filter to put on your new 75 I would advise against cycling it with a young Oscar. There not the best fish to use for a fish in cycle.
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G6DDS replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

I had a juvenile rainbow shark with my juvenile Oscar in a 100 gal tank. The rainbow nipped the hell out of my oscar, now my oscar has 100 gal all to himself.
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  • Marz
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Marz replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

Okay! Thanks for the info!

I'll go out tonight or tomorrow to my local pet shop and see if they can hold my fish until I can get a tank that size. They're nice guys. If not though, I'll donate them.

I read somewhere that the min tank size for an adult Oscar was 50 and for the RTBS, 20. Hence why I thought a 75 would be sufficient. I had no idea they required that much space. Right now in the 10 gal I have an overhanging 15 gal filter, bubble wand, plenty of hiding spaces, have been doing water changes every couple of days, added biozyme, and have been netting out fecal matter. I've also tried my best to feed my Oscars a varied diet.

I'll do a lot more research before starting over however. I don't want these Oscars growing up stunted or to be poisoned. :(

EDIT: Was planning on buying the 75 in about a week by the way.
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jmunroe replied the topic: Re:Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

Most will say 50 or 55 gallons for an oscar but that's a bit tight after the fish has reached adult size after a year. A 12 inch wide tank and a 12 inch long fish does to work very well and the water volume is a bit small as well.

Go do a water change - the solution to pollution is dilution.
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DMD123 replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

If you want to make the hobby enjoyable and easier on yourself dont get anything that meets 'minimum', always go bigger or better. This applies to the tank for sure. Yes a 55g will work but a 75g would be a much better choice, and bigger is even better. Buy filters rated for much bigger than your tank and look to try and get at least a 10x turnover rate. Getting the right things set up really makes it easier to maintain and have fun.
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DMD123 replied the topic: Red Tailed Black Shark with Tiger Oscar Pair

Oops, I forgot something :blush:

Welcome to the forum! :lol:
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