Oscar Fish "Bullying" Other Oscar! Help!

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oscarloveralex created the topic: Oscar Fish "Bullying" Other Oscar! Help!

Hello, I have two Oscar fish (one tiger albino, one tiger) that me and my family purchased about a couple months ago. The albino, who's name is Ivory, is about 3-4 inches long. The tiger, who's name is Umber, is about 4-5 inches long now. He also changes color a lot! :P. When we got them they both started out at about the same size. At first they liked their new home, which is I believe 65 gallons. (I know I need a bigger tank in the future.) All of the water levels seem normal. After a while, the albino started to "bully?" the other Oscar by chasing it around the tank and scaring it away from food and such all of the time. After a while, the tiger Oscar decided to "man up," (I guess, haha!) and start fighting back. The tiger started eating most, if not all of the food we'd put in, and the albino wouldn't get very much because the tiger ate it all. The albino still gets food, but it hasn't grown very much and the other one is probably a couple inches longer now.

Now the albino always hides because I'm pretty sure it's terrified for it's life. It gets food, just not a lot. They've lip locked a few times, too. We tried moving the log decoration we have inside the tank around so it wouldn't hide behind the spot the tiger always forced it into, and it seemed to work... For a while, at least. The tiger then forced it into another crevice that the log has, so it just hides there basically all day long. We covered the area it hid in again with some rocks, and it can't go there now. Recently, the tiger has damaged the scales of the albino by chasing it around almost constantly. I don't think the fins are damaged, but the scales look a bit torn up.

I feel so bad for the little guy/girl. I can't separate them because we can only fit one tank in our house unless we did some serious moving around which I don't know if my parents would agree with or not. The poor thing is just hiding behind a plant decoration at the moment, when it's usually a very adventurous, and energetic fish. I don't want it to live like this and be stressed out and sad because of it. I put some Melafix in the tank to see if it helps to heal the albino's scales. Should I get a tank separator? Will the tiger kill the albino? We're going on vacation in about a week. I'm really worried and don't know what to do. I want them both to live a long, happy life. I don't know very much about Oscars, as these are my first pair.

If you guys know how to help me or how I can stop this behavior before something bad happens, please let me know! I hope I've provided you all with plenty of details. Thank you for reading! If you would like me to provide current pictures of the Oscars, let me know! Once again, thanks so much! :)

Here is a picture of the albino (taken before all of this started happening): imgur.com/VhpfBdi

Here is a picture of the tiger (taken before all of this started happening): imgur.com/alYKS6Y
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oscarloveralex replied the topic: Oscar Fish "Bullying" Other Oscar! Help!

Update: I went to check on the albino, and it's hiding between the filter and the heater because that's the only place the tiger can't get it! Help! :(
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OFL replied the topic: Oscar Fish "Bullying" Other Oscar! Help!

Welcome to our community.

It's not uncommon for Oscars to pick on each other like this, especially if one is slightly bigger. Unfortunately the problems are often made worse because the tank is big enough. I know that it's not something you want to hear, but the only way you're going to resolve the situation is by rehoming one of the Oscar and just having the one Oscar. 65 gallons is nowhere near big enough to maintain two adult Oscars, believe me they will grow quickly.

I know that's not what you probably want to hear, but that's the only advice I can give you based on your situation at the moment. Keeping two large Oscars in a small tank very rarely works out.

I may not always be right, but I am always the BOSS :-)
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Suprd71 replied the topic: Oscar Fish "Bullying" Other Oscar! Help!

This scenario lends itself to a couple of pieces of common and quite old advice. 1.. stock any tank to the adult size of the resident fish. 2.. cichlid compatibility is never guaranteed, and Oscars are among the most difficult to keep together. You have to remove one fish, a divider will not solve any problem. Its a temp solution that will protect the bullied fish, but will induce stress in both fish by limiting living space. Also be well aware that the tank you have will one day be too small for even 1 large Oscar.


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