Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Corey 05-19-2008 09:44 AM

Oscar tank requirements?

I have read that its ok to keep a singel oscar in nothing smaller then a 55 gallon is this true?

Thank you.

1077 05-19-2008 09:53 AM

I believe a 55 gal. to be the smallest tank suitable for an oscar. They get very large and would not be happy in anything smaller. Think about sleeping in the closet as opposed to your bedroom. That is what it would be like for your oscar after it began approaching the size they are capable of reaching. 75 to 100 gal.would be needed for it to be comfortable. :wink:

Gump 05-19-2008 01:38 PM

I've always said 75 gal min for a mid sized to full grown oscar.

Cody 05-19-2008 06:43 PM


Originally Posted by Gump
I've always said 75 gal min for a mid sized to full grown oscar.

+1. 75G, minimum. They are huge waste producers and can reach up to 14-16" long. How can one turn around in a tank that is only 12" deep? They need the space, and the proper care to see the best out of them.

herefishy 05-19-2008 07:40 PM

I don't believe that upgrading from a 55g to a 70g-75g will make that much difference. Tank size has very little to do with processing the wastes of these fish. No mater the tank size, 55g-90g, upgrading filtration is of the essence. Utilizing multiple types of filtration, layers, is highly suggested. By using power filters, both internal and external, power heads(to either provide flow to ugf's or power sponge filters), and canisters are the types I would suggest.

1077 05-20-2008 03:46 AM

herefishy, surely you have seen a pleco or an oscar for that matter that has long ago outgrown it's surroundings. op expressly inquired as to minimum size tank needed. while proper filtration IS very important, It is much easier to upgrade the filtration as opposed to upgrading the size of aquarium depending on finances not to mention labor of tearing down and setting up the new or used larger tank. would you not agree?

Gump 05-20-2008 10:11 AM

My reason has nothing to do with waste produced. Standard 55 gallon is 12" wide and a standard 75 is 18" wide. So an oscar that was housed correctly while growing should easily be longer than the width of a 55 gallon tank.

herefishy 05-20-2008 11:19 AM

While the tank size is important, and I do agree that a 55g tank is too small as is the 75g/90g, filtration is most key for keeping oscars. You can always upgrade. Financially it will be a burden, but if you want to "hear the music, you must pay the band". Same is for fish keeping, if you want to keep fish, be prepared to fund your hobby.

I know both plecs and oscars get large, if not huge. Large plecs, however, seem to get very lazy. I once had one that was over 20". I had to poke him from time to time, usually when cleaning the tank, just to see if he was alive. He became more of an ornament than a part of the cleaning crew. Oscars on the other hand remain relatively active. If I were to suggest a tank for an adult oscar, it would be no smaller than the foot print of a 300g and heavily filtered. But, we all cannot afford to have such a tank, either financially or due to space constraints.

1077 05-20-2008 12:11 PM

I agree with you. If everyone took into consideration the adult size fish are capable of reaching when purchasing these fish as well as others, There would be much happier fish. For example most would not consider putting two or three goldfish in a bowl yet on the inside of the backcover of the July issue of Aquarium fish International it depicts just such a scene. People then ignorantly assume that it must be ok. Tank size must meet the needs of the fish . :x

bf2king 05-20-2008 03:09 PM

I myself have kept a fully grown oscar in a 55 gallon. I would NOT sujest this to anyone. The Oscar seemed happy enough and would regularly beg for food. In fact since we didnt have a lid for the tank my dad put 2 2x4's on it. He would splash through the 2x4's at oncomers to tell u he wanted more food. This though was when i knew nothing of the hobby. But we have since lost the oscar. We lost him thanks to a power outage while we were away. His filtration and air pumps gave out. We lost him by the time we got back and the people feeding him didnt notice :(

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