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Old 07-05-2006, 02:42 AM   #1
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big fish fight

My jack dempsey and my largest green terror got into a jaw lock a few times today...If course the jack dempsey won even though its smaller.

He ripped a good bit of skin/bone/teeth ect ect off the Terror...After if happened the terror looked like he was in a lot of pain, opening and closing his jaw franticly and scraping the ground.

The jack (only 4-5") even bit my 8" red tail tinfoil barb...took some scales off...and ate them.

Is he just very territorial? Should I get another smaller jack dempsey so he will have somebody in common throughout the community?



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Old 07-05-2006, 02:43 AM   #2
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size of tank? you might already be overstocked. which will cause alot of problems of fish fighting.
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Old 07-05-2006, 03:03 AM   #3
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A friend who is a big Cichlid man (I know nothing about them) once told me that aggresion in cichlids is usually caused by understocking. Apparently if you have enough of them they will not get territorial.

He was talking about oscars so I have no idea if the same is true for your fish, which by the way look really beautiful.
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Old 07-05-2006, 03:07 AM   #4
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It's in a 150 gallon tank thats pretty heavily planted (fake) and has some driftwood to hide in.

And thank you for the compliment. I really love the JD...beautiful fish...Huge mouth, very aggressive.
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Old 07-05-2006, 11:03 AM   #5
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NOOOOOOO!! dont get another JD... thats asking 4 trouble... a pair of mean fish thay'd be thinking...

Thats creepy
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Old 07-05-2006, 02:41 PM   #6
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~moved to the Cichlid Forum~

You need to read up on the fish you have before deciding if adding more is right for your tank. Overstocking Mbuna is often recommended to cut down on territory disputes, but I don’t know how well it works with Central and South American cichlids. With Mbuna, once a pecking order is established, the mouth locking fights are few and far between useless you have two fish that constantly via for the top position. The terror and JD may not fight again any time soon since the terror was the clear loser. The biting of the other fish is cause for concern since that fish does not have the same instincts and would never fight to be “top” fish.
Just looking at the mouth/head structure of the JD will tell you what it evolved for. There is great information on Mongabay and within that link there is a link for Ciclasoma cichlids. Mixing Central and South American cichlids is generally considered safe, but some cichlids simply will not get along with any fish.
The only experience I have with JDs was bad. A LFS employee told me they could live with Mbuna (what the heck did I know then?) and the JD did well for 6 months or so. That little bugger hit sexual maturity and it started going after my adult Mbuna. After it stressed my favorite fish to death, the JD was scooped up and promptly given to the first store that would take it.
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Old 07-05-2006, 03:22 PM   #7
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Often Dempseys are hit or miss. Some will live well with tank mates and others will never no matter what. Did you introduce him to your tank first, or last?
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Old 07-05-2006, 06:41 PM   #8
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do you feed them live fish too?

mine is picky now and doesnt really take to the pellets or anything till i throw some live feeders in there then he will go nuts..
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Old 07-05-2006, 11:11 PM   #9
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I feed them small red goldies every once in a while. But the only ones who eat them are the Oscars. The JD doesn't like them. I feed a variety of Cichlid sticks, Oscar Grow, Tetramin crisps, bloodwors, giant krill, freeze dried baby shrimp, and every once in a while live feeders and shrimp.
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Old 07-06-2006, 06:08 AM   #10
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Continue feeding all except any live food. Feeding live ultimately increases aggression. Overstocking new world cichlids will lead to a spread aggression, similar to what I hear about the african population. All I keep is CA/SA cichlids and learned quickly that the mainainence resulting from the overstock is well worth the keep. DO NOT add another JD, however I may consider adding a male blood parrot (if you find a good size one at 4-5+"), for the simple fact that this "freak fish" will put the JD in it's place. Keep in mind whatever happens in this tank is a direct result of your stocking, feeding, and maintainence habits. There's minimal factors influencing a fish's survival insticts. I have seen 2 male tinfoil barbs and 1 female in a 30g long at my LFS and the employees didn't even know that the 2 big males were fighting! The damage on one was so bad that it looked like it had a type of mouth rot, but it was clearly body damage from the other's constant pounding. Was the tank overstocked?, probably, but the little irridescent sharks didnt seem to care!

When you do your next water change I would completely rearrange the tank so that the territories are destroyed.

What are the exact species and size of the fish in this tank, to give me a better idea of potential addition(s).
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Old 07-07-2006, 04:27 AM   #11
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Overstocking chichlid tanks with all males I think it was, was the going myth in the mid 90's

I had a co-worker that did the same bull and told me it was the way to go!!! Her tank had issues that year
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