Electric Blue Jack Dempsey / Black Upside Down Catfish : NEED ADVICE
Hello Fish Peeps,
I am hoping someone can help me - I am a bit stressed out with this.
A friend of mine had a fish aquarium that she wanted to get rid of and was not caring for, I took a list of all the fish, looked them thought about the commitment and decided it was a good fit for my family and I. It is a 65 gallon tank with a large common catfish, a leopard catfish (small-ish), a cichlid (small-ish), a large electric blue Jack Dempsey (we call him Patrick Dempsey; sure you have all heard that before..) and a large black Asian Upside down catfish. Another draw for me was that these fish have all lived together an upwards of 3 years at this point. So, it being an established tank I was not expecting any issues. My problem is Patrick Dempsey seems to be harassing the heck out of the upside down catfish. When we first put the tank up the upside catfish was activly swimming having a fantastic seeming time and the big blue one would hide - now it is almost reversed and the black upside down catfish is just swimming vertically in the back corner behind this fake plant I have and some bubbles. I don't think he looks very happy. The Patrick Dempsey swims over to him and seems like he is biting him and then swims away. The black catfish was really reactive at first and now he just stays there until the Jack Dempsey leaves. I tried building more caves and the Jack just claims them all ; I tried blocking his site line to the Upside down catfish so now he has taken to rearranging all the rocks under the upside down catfish and laying under him. I tried putting a new "cave" on the other side of the tank to hopefully coax him over there to no avail. I contacted my friend about their behavior previously and she said what I was describing is what they have always done... but I sit and watch them hours at a time (I have OCD and it bothers me the black catfish seems unhappy) I think when we took the tank down and moved it to our house and put the rocks and coral back in it changed the territories and I do not know how to even the playing field again. I have taken to feeding them more which has helped, I was going to add another large cave today... but maybe some live plants? One site I read suggested to stock the tank more, one site said I should have at least 3 upside down catfish (seems like a lot they are big). There was another fish in there when it was at my friends house - it was very large he died last year. I don't know what to get that the Jack won't kill and then won't attacking this poor upside catfish. I would love to coax him out of the corner. He does eat a lot when I feed them - just he stays in his spot. If I had to room I would get another tank and take the Upside down cat out to chill somewhere else but we do not have the room and I hate to give away pets....
Any advice is greatly appreciated.