My friend just got a Jack Dempsy and I'm looking for answers - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 5 Old 07-19-2009, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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My friend just got a Jack Dempsy and I'm looking for answers

My friend and I are kinda in on this fish thing together. Although she's paying for it all but I'm the one with aquarium experience so I'm helping a lot.

I am new to the Cichlid family tho.

She got her fish from the local pet store. Now I'm more of a dog person, and in the dog world buying a dog from the pet store is a HUGE taboo, because of genetic health issues. Is it different in the fish world?

She got her Jack last week along with a brand new 26 G aquarium (she was told this will be big enough, is it?)

Today she went to the pet store again and picked up a couple of minnow "feeder fish" for her Jack. she put them in the tank when she got home and he ate one within 10 minutes. In the dog world it is considered a good thing to get raw fresh food, is it ok for the Jack? She is also going to be gone for 3 days next week. I suggested buying a bunch of those feeder fish so he can snack while she's gone. Is this a safe idea?

Here is a picture of the little guy
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File Type: jpg JackDempsy.jpg (23.4 KB, 33 views)

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post #2 of 5 Old 07-19-2009, 08:52 PM
no, 26gal is not enough for a dempsey,it looks a little young yet so it might work out for a couple of months. jack dempsey's get about 10 inches, it'll work out better in at least a 55gal. you shouldn't feed him any kind of cold water feeders, there fat/amino acids are difficult for tropical fish to diegest. try using guppies,tetras, or ohter small tropical fish. i would advise not getting them for your lfs, the way they crowd them in the tanks and their turn over rate, all it would take is the feeder tank have a parasite or illness and you bring it home to your fish.if you still want to give feeders, i suggest that you get a smaller tank and raise you own like guppies, they breed like rabbits. only use feeders as a snack, his main diet should be a good stable pellet, you can also give as a snack/treat some fruits/veggies (don't give corn - can't diegest) with no skins or seeds. hopes this helps. as far as being gone for a few days, you pet store should sell what is called weekend feeders, it's a cube of food you put in the tank and it disolves/breaks up slowly letting the fish eat.
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post #3 of 5 Old 07-19-2009, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
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Ya I remember useing those cubes for vacation feeding I just wasn't sure if those were made for Cichlids, we used them on our platys and tetras. HOw fast do the Dempseys grow? I've heard they will get anywhere from 8" to 15"

we used to have a Pacostomas and it took about 3 years to reach a foot long.

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post #4 of 5 Old 07-19-2009, 09:58 PM
i got my dempsey almost 2 yrs ago and he was like 2 1/2 in and now he's around the 8in range. most of the dempsey's that i've came accross topped out around 10 inches but i've also seen a few (males) that were closer to 1 ft.
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post #5 of 5 Old 07-20-2009, 06:28 AM
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One thing with your friend going away for a few days...............I wouldnt worry about the fish not eating for 3 days, it will be fine.........Just feed them a healthy diet the day or 2 before they leave (but dont overfeed) and the Jack will be fine.....IMO, those vacation feeder blocks will do more harm than good, i think they mess the water quality up to much to be used (thats just my opinion).......I agree with Buzz, the 26 gallon wont work for long, maybe a few months, but your friend is gonna have to get a bigger tank or rehome the Jack........I lost my male Jack about 6 months ago after having him for 7 years............He was 11 and half inches long and had a healthy pair of shoulders........He was a very great fish with a wonderful personality.........Hope your friends does well for them!
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