Worried about my Oscar

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ernie replied the topic: Worried about my Oscar

Your Oscar is suffering from hole in the head disease which is mainly caused by poor water conditions. There are a number of articles on the site that you should be reading. Your water change schedule should be increased to 3 x 75% weekly and using a conditioner like Prime. You have some work to do if you wish to save your Oscar.
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jmunroe replied the topic: Re:Worried about my Oscar

trendsetter56 wrote: 4 tbls as I don't like to use too much

How often have you been doing this? If you add 4 tbls every time then remove 25% of the water, you removing only one tbls. Then if you add 4 more you now have 7 tbls in your tank. Before long you have a marine tank. But as the others said, your tank has some serious issues that need to be addressed. Overstocking, mixing of wrong cichlids and lack of maintenance being the biggies.

Go do a water change - the solution to pollution is dilution.
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UNC-CH replied the topic: Worried about my Oscar

You have a big decision to make. You'll either have to make a drastic change in the care given to this oscar, or the HITH will get worse and kill the fish. I'd recommend getting a 75 gallon tank for the oscar, so he won't have the stress of being in an overstocked tank. Then he'll need water changes of 75% every 2-3 days. There are also vitamin supplements and advice that can be given if you ask.

If you're not ready or are unable to give him the attention needed, instead of letting the fish suffer you might consider putting him down. Here's an article on how to humanely put down an oscar.

www.oscarfishlover.com/euthanise-your-oscar
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  • trendsetter56
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trendsetter56 replied the topic: Worried about my Oscar

Regarding your previous answer I do understand how to balance the salt I am putting in the tank. I have been taking care of fish for over 10 years I think you misunderstood me. My Oscar is now in a hospital tank of 120 gallon and is being treated with medication. I did consult a friend who has been keeping aquariums for over 30 years and has been involved with many marine life facilities all over the world. He did agree that it is HITH I think I am on the right track to help my Oscar recover. I also know how to euthanize a fish but I have no intention of doing that to my Oscar until all else fails. FYI there is a huge debate in the aquarium world regarding mixing SA Cichlids with African. A lot of people have done it and not had a problem as most fish adapt to their environment. I am not saying that is the ultimate best way but I have had this mix ongoing for over 10 years. The problem I am having now is a result of my filters blowing and in term causing all my air bubblers to quit. I am not sure for how long but it caused a 1/3 of the water in one tank to flood my basement and turned a perfectly good echo system into havok. The fish were doing fine before then now I have to help them get better. According to my friend most marine facilities keep their tanks largely stocked with fish it prevents territorial issues as they are too busy watching their own butts. As long as continous water changes are taking place and the new water being replaced with the appropriate chemicals there should not be a problem If you go by rule of them and stock your tank with 1" of fish per gallon of water it should be fine. I have two 150 gallon tanks with approx 19 fish averaging 5" in each tank so in my opinion that should fit into the rule of thumb!!! I am sure you are pretty knowledgeable in the fish world and I thank you for all your help......
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Goranothos replied the topic: Worried about my Oscar

The 1 inch of fish per gallon rule of thumb only applies to planted community tanks with smaller fish. Large Cichlids, such as Oscars, Sevs, etc. need, minimum, 55 gallons per fish, and frequent large water changes. I urge you to listen to the members of this forum who have, collectively, many decades of experience with how to properly keep Oscars and other cichlids. Good luck to you and your O. I'm going to let the more experienced forum members attempt to help you now.

“Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the face.” -Mike Tyson
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Darth Nandopsis replied the topic: Worried about my Oscar

The reason your fish has HITH has been outlined to you several times by very knowledgeable fish-keepers. It was caused by overcrowding & poor water quality, bottom line. Continually adding salt is unnecessary in a freshwater aquarium, & will only accomplish one thing.....making a brackish or marine aquarium. No knowledgeable cichlid keeper would mix species from different regions, & overcrowding an aquarium is just that...overcrowding an aquarium, with all the resultant water quality & health issues associated w/ that, which you & your fish are now experiencing. The 1" rule of fish applies to tetra, barbs, & other small fish...NEVER TO CICHLIDS, especially large SA/CA species. Overcrowding also causes stress to fish, which inhibits their ability to produce slime coat, which is the 1st line of defense against parasites & pathogens. Also, HITH does NOT happen overnight...it takes months of improper care for this to happen. The best thing you could do for that fish is change the water every day, 75% or better, & feed it a vitamin enriched diet....meds can be harsh, & w/ such an advanced case, meds will probably do more harm than good to an already stressed out & very sick fish. If you wish to listen to your friend & whomever else is advising you, that is your prerogative.....but having kept & bred several dozen species of SA/CA/African Rift lake species in my 43+ years of fish-keeping, both as a hobby & professionally, I can assure you it was their horrible advice & your lack of being willing to listen to exactly what caused this is why your Oscar in in the shape it is, & while we are always willing to help you, if you don't wish to listen to the decades of advice available here, I'm not quite sure why you joined this forum & I'm not sure what we can do to help you.

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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UNC-CH replied the topic: Worried about my Oscar

Why didn't you notice the HITH developing months ago before it reached this point?

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jmunroe replied the topic: Re:Worried about my Oscar

trendsetter56 wrote: FYI there is a huge debate in the aquarium world regarding mixing SA Cichlids with African. A lot of people have done it and not had a problem as most fish adapt to their environment. If you go by rule of them and stock your tank with 1" of fish per gallon of water it should be fine. I have two 150 gallon tanks with approx 19 fish averaging 5" in each tank so in my opinion that should fit into the rule of thumb!!! ......


There's no debate in the aquarium world about mixing of SA/CA with Africans. There are those that know better and those that don't know any better and because the suffering fish don't show symptoms right away, all is believed to be well by the people that don't know any better. There are rivers of Africa that have soft water similar to SA fish requirements but there is also diet to think of. You may possibly be able to mix these if water temp and diet as well fall into range. The 1 inch per gallon is for small tetras as mentioned. You wouldn't put 12 or 13 foot long oscars in a 150 gallon would you? Your 150 gallon tanks are overstocked and will eventually lead to serious problems down the road. Especially since your water changes are grossly inadequate. Just giving you some facts to help out, sorry if they are blunt responses. Don't subject that poor Oscar to meds, just give him lots of clean water. He has been suffering for a looooooong time.

Go do a water change - the solution to pollution is dilution.
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