Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

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Chris-gashead created the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

Hi Guys,

What is the growth rate of the average JD? I have a pair in a (L)120cmx(W)40cmx(H)55cm, 260 litre aquarium at the moment, and both are around the 3.5" mark. I have had them for about 4 months and both have probably grown about 0.5 of an inch. Is this normal growth rate? They are breeding like rabbits which suggests everything is fine for them in terms of conditions and nutrition, but they are barely getting any bigger. I expected (was hoping) maybe 2 inches growth by now!

How big should I expect them to be within the year? How long does it take them to reach their full adult size?

Also, I am feeding them both Hikari cichlid gold pellets mostly, with the occasional frozen brine shrimp and krill...I also tried garden peas with them for the first time the other day and they seemed to enjoy them. Anything else you can recommend to feed them to give them a good balanced diet?

I do water changes for them at least 2 times a week, generally around a third each time (two thirds water change per week). I have a fluval 305 for them at the moment. Would you say this a strong enough filter for when they are adults?

Any advice on this, and any other matters regarding JD's would be appreciated. It is the first time I have kept a pair and love watching them together :)
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Suprd71 replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

I have a 3yr old male around 9ins, a 21 month male close to 7. They grow slow. Curious as to why you only do 1/3 at each w/c? While you are already there, take it down to 50% or more. Nothing but benefit for the fish. The tank may be a bit on the small side for a pair of adults, say 6+ins and the filter could use a big hob to help it with mechanical. Diet is good, keep a varied offering.


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Chris-gashead replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

Suprd71 wrote: I have a 3yr old male around 9ins, a 21 month male close to 7. They grow slow. Curious as to why you only do 1/3 at each w/c? While you are already there, take it down to 50% or more. Nothing but benefit for the fish. The tank may be a bit on the small side for a pair of adults, say 6+ins and the filter could use a big hob to help it with mechanical. Diet is good, keep a varied offering.


I do sometimes take it down to 50% or more, but only when they have been particularly messy.... They get a little stressed out when I do big water changes for some reason so I try to get it over and done with as quickly as possible. I don't mind doing water changes though, and in fact enjoy doing that as much as keeping the fish in the first place. I have a 6 foot Malawi set up that I do 50-75% water changes on weekly and a 2x2x2 Tanganyika tank with shell dwellers where I do about a third water change weekly as well, so big water bills for me :ohmy:

I was hoping I could house them permanently in this tank (it's almost a 70 US gallon tank) but it wouldn't be a problem for me to upgrade the tank in say a year or so anyway so that's cool.

I feed them small amounts (2 pellets each) three times a day. Does that sound excessive, or about right? Should I also try them with garden worms, spiders etc? Anything to help them grow faster :) I tend to appreciate bigger fish more
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Suprd71 replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

I underestimated 2 things.. my 21mo male is far closer to 6in than 7, and I was thinking your tank was more in the 55g range. Should hold them for quite a while yet, being around 70. By stressed, you mean hiding out? Thats a JD thing, they pout more than Oscars. More clean water will be far more beneficial than hurting their feelings. More filtration is in order though. Throw an Aquaclear 110 on there and yer all set for the long run. Outside worms are ok if you can be absolutely positive they have not been in contact with pesticides of fertilizer. Hit a bait shop and be certain of what you get. Spiders, no. Not sure where you live, but many spiders carry venom. Quick tip.. to grow cichlids big, quicker and more colorful, clean water is the key.


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Darth Nandopsis replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

Just an addendum......fish secrete a growth inhibiting hormone into the water via their urine......although JD's grow fairly slow, doing frequent large scale water changes will help them achieve their full potential.

Can you shoot a video of them? (I miss it?) JD's are one of my personal faves.

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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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Poseidon2.0 replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

Darth Nandopsis wrote: JD's are one of my personal faves.


Seriously a great fish. I kept them when I was a teen and loved them. The more I hang out on this site, the more I fear (or is it hope?) that I am going to end up with 10+ aquariums like in the old days. Ha ha. No space, but who needs a couch for guests or bookshelves for reading material when you can have a couple of 6 foot aquariums; right?
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Chris-gashead replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

Awesome, yeah its bigger than you would think. The height gives it more volume than your typical 4 foot aquarium. Yes they seem to dash for cover as soon as I put my gravel cleaner in the tank. So do you recommend 100% water changes per week then? Or more even? I could do 2 50% no problem :)

I was thinking of upgrading the filter to a large external anyway some time next year so I will get on that ASAP.... whats the best filter for this sized tank for the money? I like fluval as they are easy to maintain. I used to have Eheim, but I pretty much had to manually get it going every time I cleaned it, which got annoying so I changed it. I will look for some worms when I get a spare moment. Would maggots from a fish tackle shop do them any good? I live in the UK and thankfully we don't have any dangerous spiders here, though I am sure they all have some venom, but would it effect the fish? I would like to give them a decent variety of foods as I know I would hate to eat the same thing day in day out!
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Chris-gashead replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

I have a video of them that I shot the other day. Unfortunately it was a night time shot (dimmed lighting) when they were eating their peas for the first time. I will try to get a better video up on here soon :) I only just uploaded it so it might take a while to be approved. They are sporting their breeding colours right now as well, which doesn't help

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Chris-gashead replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

Poseidon2.0 wrote:

Darth Nandopsis wrote: JD's are one of my personal faves.


Seriously a great fish. I kept them when I was a teen and loved them. The more I hang out on this site, the more I fear (or is it hope?) that I am going to end up with 10+ aquariums like in the old days. Ha ha. No space, but who needs a couch for guests or bookshelves for reading material when you can have a couple of 6 foot aquariums; right?


haha, I currently have 3 aquariums (used to be four but I took down the marine tank as it was costing the earth to maintain it) plus a large pond in the garden with shubumpkins (spelling??). Not sure I can find anymore space, but if I do manage to find a gap somewhere, I will stick another tank in it :woohoo:
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Darth Nandopsis replied the topic: Rocio Octofasciata (Jack Dempsey) Growth rate, and some info

1st off....that's a helluva good looking pair o' JD's. Shame your across the pond, because I wouldn't mind getting some juvies off of that pair.

As far as WC's go, let's put it this way....I literally just got done doing a 90% WC on my 125GL Jag tank.....& I just did one last Saturday. While your fish are obviously in great shape, if ya want to put some size on them, do big WC's as often as the mood strikes you, along w/ a thorough gravel vacuuming. Absolutely the best thing in the world for your fish.

I have a question.....how do you cultivate that algae on those rocks? I take it no pleco in there..... :whistle: I can't get that stuff to grow, & I like the look of it.

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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