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Old 03-25-2021, 01:13 PM   #1
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Oscar's scared of everything

So I have have 2 Oscar's in my 75 gallon tank for a few months and I keep on telling myself they will stop being scared soon but I'm not sure can anyone tell me anything that can help them
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Old 03-25-2021, 07:59 PM   #2
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Some people have found that keeping lights low or off for a few days will calm them until they adjust. Also approaching with food, let them know your hand is where their food comes from. Food - the friend maker.
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Old 03-25-2021, 10:27 PM   #3
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Is it that they run and hide when you approach or does it happen when a stranger approaches? The reason Oscars are so successful in life is because they are intelligent and weary of danger.
I suggest watching the fish from a distance and see how they behave when you are not in front of the tank. If they are happy go lucky, it means that they just are not secure with you yet. The feeding them trick should eventually work. If they are not happy go lucky and are just hiding or staying out of view, your setup is not to their liking so you should address the lighting and hiding areas ( rocks and wood) to make them feel more secure. Scaredy fish tend to stay out in the open more when they know they have a secure place to hide if danger approaches.
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Old 03-26-2021, 08:11 AM   #4
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Ok well I just added wood and I'm waiting for them to water log so its probably gonna be a bit till they act normal

Also I did notice the smaller one sticks around the bigger one just underneath like a magnet is that normalClick image for larger version

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Old 03-26-2021, 08:14 AM   #5
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They are ok will me not fully but my other family members they hide the thing is that the tank is in my room and no one goes in there often so I think that's maybe why
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Old 03-26-2021, 08:52 AM   #6
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I've had many Oscars through the years but usually alone since they grow like crazy eventually outgrowing the tank/s. As far as shyness, never met a shy Oscar, they are usually up front fish and usually looking for food. Just wonder if you are giving them too much food? The only time mine would slow down or hide was right after consuming a big meal. The hand feeding as suggested trick works. Lighting is an issue with a lot of fish, they don't "need" direct lighting but its nice to be able to see them. Do they react differently with the lights on vs off? Also as suggested, you might want to try keeping the lights off for a while and see what happens.
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Old 03-26-2021, 09:52 AM   #7
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"Also I did notice the smaller one sticks around the bigger one just underneath like a magnet"

Sure, I'd stick around my big brother for security in a big scary world, too. Safety in numbers.

Thanks for the picture, now we know what their setup looks like. You have a nice start there but it looks a little bare. I can see why they're afraid - too much open space, not enough hiding places. Do you plan on adding plants, fake or live? That will help them a lot, more comfort zones.

Think of it this way: if you were put into an almost bare room where giants could see you 24/7 and loom over you to watch your every move, wouldn't you feel a little bit paranoid? Like you just want to hide until they go away? Like you want some privacy sometimes? I've noticed the general rule seems to be that the more hiding places they have, the more they come out into the open spaces. Because they know they can always go find safety when they feel the need for it.
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Old 03-26-2021, 11:10 AM   #8
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Yeah I agree the sticks at top of the tank are for more shelter just gotta wait for the to water log I haven't thought too much about plants any suggestions
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Old 03-27-2021, 12:54 AM   #9
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Yeah I agree the sticks at top of the tank are for more shelter just gotta wait for the to water log I haven't thought too much about plants any suggestions
I wouldn't put too much money into plants because the fish will destroy them. ( Mine used to pick them up and move them around their tank. Thankfully, they were plastic plants. ) I'd go plastic or more wood and rock formations for hiding spots.
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Old 03-28-2021, 09:19 AM   #10
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Agree with Andy Sager on the plants, I quickly learned plants are irrelevant to anything in an Oscar tank. Rocks and other ornaments the same, they would just move them around and also became not safe as they would get scrapped against rocks and other ornaments. Their priority is feeding and being in front of the tank checking you out. Did you try the lighting? Even if you leave them without lights for a couple of days just to observe their behavior with/without.
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Old 03-30-2021, 12:15 PM   #11
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I have left the lights off for a week and they seem still a little scared but much better when I stay still I found the sticks in parks and I baked them so they should be good
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Old 03-30-2021, 12:17 PM   #12
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I dont know if any one noticed but it the left corner of the tank is some rocks and I have a pleco that hangs there I was think bout puting a bit of plants over there is it a good idea
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Old 03-30-2021, 09:48 PM   #13
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I dont know if any one noticed but it the left corner of the tank is some rocks and I have a pleco that hangs there I was think bout puting a bit of plants over there is it a good idea
If you are asking for opinions, I'd say you are wasting your money with any live plant. Feed the pleco algae wafers and build up the rock formation for the Oscars to be able to hide around now. The sticks, when they finally sink, will make a nice addition to the rock formation but until they get to that point, your fish are just scared in your tank and won't get past that until you give them a reason not to be scared. Oscars by nature are not open water fish and your tank as it is now, is 90% open water vs 10% covered. I doubt the fish will be happy until that changes to at least 50/50. Maybe make a nice formation taking up at least a third of the tank starting at a side and reaching towards the center. I say this because as these fish grow, a nice formation that expands from back to front is going to block off swimming space for a larger fish so if you did this in the center of the tank, you should not build it up to high whereas from the side, you can make it as wide as you want so the fish have a nice "hole" to reside in and open water to get their feeding done in. ( This btw, is how I set up all my Oscar tanks. At one point, I was breeding 13 pairs of Oscars so it must agree with them. ) You have to think like a fish.
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Old 04-01-2021, 11:26 AM   #14
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Ok I haven't made any changes yet but when I do should I remove them from the tank so they dont freak out or keep them
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Old 04-01-2021, 11:38 AM   #15
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Leave 'em. Just move slowly and gently (I talk to them too). They need to get used to da daddy coming in to make everything alright
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Old 04-01-2021, 01:27 PM   #16
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Lol ok didnt know that helps should I stop if they get a grey pail color
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Old 04-04-2021, 11:24 AM   #17
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Lol ok didnt know that helps should I stop if they get a grey pail color
They WILL get upset because of the disturbance in their world so you are going to have to monitor their behavior. Depending on how extensive your redesign is, imo you may need to remove them temporarily so that they don't crash into any surfaces that can injure them. ( If you put them in a bucket, make sure you have it covered so they don't jump out.) If you can redesign and the fish stay put in say, a corner, I'd leave them in. If they start to dash around the tank, I'd remove them. If removing them is not an option, I would add a couple pieces then stop and let them calm down then add more.
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Old 04-04-2021, 12:42 PM   #18
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Ok they actually do the dash often they will wake me up in middle of nights is it bad
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Old 04-05-2021, 12:12 PM   #19
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I dont know if they are fighting or if they are just spooked
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Old 04-05-2021, 09:53 PM   #20
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Ok they actually do the dash often they will wake me up in middle of nights is it bad. I dont know if they are fighting or if they are just spooked
There are a lot of possibilities. Do you have other pets that may be moving in your room while you are asleep? Are you a roller that spins in your bed and may be scaring the fish? Is there a window where maybe a car's headlights are coming into the room and hitting the tank at night?
If the lights are out and they are still dashing, it's probably not fighting but could be one hogging the best sleep spot and chasing the smaller one out. It could be the smaller one sneaking into the bigger one's hiding spot and freaking the bigger one out. Could be a bug or lizard falling into the tank and them eating it. Could be.................. etc.
Bottom line, a fixed/ properly set up aquarium for Oscars will probably solve a lot of these issues.
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