Sluggish Oscar

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fprefect created the topic: Sluggish Oscar

Over the past 2 or 3 weeks, my 11-12 month old (6 1/2 in) oscar has become very sluggish at times, even to the point of laying "flat" in the water for brief periods of time.

The fish is still eating, (Hikari Cichlid Gold pellets, TetraCichlid Cichlid Sticks and small quantities of of raw cod fillets, but only approx 25% of it's normal food intake.

No external markings whatsoever. I have raised Oscars before when in high school many years ago and have never experienced this type of problem. (if it is a problem)

Any thoughts as to what might be causing this type of behavior. The fish is only in a 40 gal tank for the time being but had planned to move to a 70 within the next 6 months or so.

F. Prefect
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  • OscarTheAstronaut
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OscarTheAstronaut replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

Well, figured I'd chime in. I know the first thing folks might say is that perhaps the 40g is a bit small, and he may just feel like he's got no space. The only time my Oscar ever laid flat like that was when the heater stopped working one time, and the water got colder. What's the tank temp? Fins look okay right? And I assume you keep up on water changes. A tank that size will need them since these guys are so dirty. I am, however, not one of the experts. Just thought I'd share my thoughts with ya.

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cotoandpaxi replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

this could be any number of things. your O might be stressed out due to the tank size, or maybe your water temp. is too low, or too high. My oscars do this only when they dont like something, not usually because they are sick. Oscars are very picky, and if something isnt right in there tank they will either try to change it, or throw a fit and act sluggish, and usually lay on its side.
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OrangeO replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

Like OscarTheAstronaut said, it is either because of the aquarium being too small or the water is too cold. Oscars are most active between 77-81 degrees Fahrenheit (25-27 degrees Celsius).

www.youtube.com/user/OrangeEverything

125 Gallon Aquarium

1 Tiger Oscar
1 Lutino Oscar
1 Common Pleco
1 Salvini
7 Silver Dollars
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OrangeO replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

I forgot to mention that a fish that lies on its side is often a sign that they are sick or not feeling well.

www.youtube.com/user/OrangeEverything

125 Gallon Aquarium

1 Tiger Oscar
1 Lutino Oscar
1 Common Pleco
1 Salvini
7 Silver Dollars
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OscarTheAstronaut replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

I think I would find a place for that 70g, instant cycle the thing with some water and substrate from the existing tank, and carefully re-locate the little guy into his new penthouse flat. You could make a day project out of it. Maybe even run the filter for the 40g for a few days int he new tank. If nothing changes, then you always have the 40g as a hospital tank to treat him if it's some type of illness.

If I'm going a little overboard, I apologize. It could be as simple as making sure the tank is something like 79, like OrangeO said. Maybe throw a few little goldfish in there to get him moving. Thing is, at 6.5-7 inches, in the 40, he'll probably kick up a hell of a lot of crap from the bottom if he starts chasing food around. :)

Personally, I'd go ahead and set up the bigger tank with the quickness. It'll be fun. He'll love it. And hopefully, so will you!

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fprefect replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

Water temp in high 70's and constant. No visable parasites or any other exteral irregularities. This is the first time I have had to use chorinated water and it's taken me a while to achieve clear water, but water appearance is now fine. Clean bottom every 3 or 4 days and change approx. 25% of water weekly. I have stopped feeding any live food, so perhaps it is only a bit bored.
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jjjohnston8623 replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

the chlorinated water might be doing it, if you didn't put any water conditioner in it.
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fprefect replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

I don't know. I was apparently not using enough dechlorinator which prevented any buildup of material in the biofilter (this is the first time I have EVER used a biofilter). Someone in this forum suggested using additional dechlorinator which appears to have worked as water is now crystal clear and have bacterial matter in the biofilter. As I stated previously, this is first time I have used chlorinated water and is a new experience.

A larger tank is probably the best answer if I can find a place to put the darn thing other than an unused bedroom. To be honest, I purchased this tank a a piece of furniture and had planned to buy neons, guppies etc. But had raised Oscars in my younger days and decided to buy one rather than the smaller tropicals. Upps.
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OscarTheAstronaut replied the topic: Re: Sluggish Oscar

Yeah he might be a bit bored for sure. :laugh:
Doubling up on the conditioner will probably help. My other thought was to wonder if you were trying to treat the water in any "balancer" or PH adjuster or something. That stuff is weird. Personally I just like to use something that removes the chlorine and sulfides and things like that, and let the tank and it's thousands of little bacteria do the balancing. I live in Michigan too though, and our tap water is full of chlorine, sulfur, iron, and fluoride. It's nasty. I don't even like drinking it. :blink: I treat it, and let it sit for while. I usually use Aquasafe products, since they're generally the most available around here, but to be honest, I haven't used many other types to test a difference. One of the true pros around here might know better.

Price check! Clean up, Aisle Six! Rotted body landsliiiiiiiide. And don't forget our special sale on every bone broken chickennnnn! Hurry! Enjoy our tasty hammer smashed face! Uh, Aisle Three.
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