Oscar fish | habitat, feed, Physical characteristics, Difficulties

The Oscar fish (Astronotus Ocellatus) or also called the Oscar Tiger fish belongs to the family of cichlidsand are native to South America. They have a large size as well as very striking colors. They are considered very intelligent fish due to their behavior and personality.

When they are few months old they have a very small size but when they reach adulthood they can measure up to 35 cm . It is currently one of the most valued by aquarists.

He is considered one of the most intelligent fish but at the same time with greater character and aggressiveness.

In everyday life you will be surprised to see how these fish let you touch them. Many fans come to consider it as if it were a pet, such as a dog or a cat. You can give him food from your hand. Of course, be careful not to take a bite.

In recent years due to the fame and popularity that this species has reached, aquarium fans have raised I have introduced various varieties of this species.

Among these species are the albino Oscar, the blue Oscar, the gray Oscar and a multitude of varieties with different colors. All of them with spectacular tones and aspects.

All these types start from the Red Oscar, which has the body composed of red and orange tones.

Although they differ in appearance, they all require the same maintenance and power.

Luckily for all of us who like Oscars, the care they require is quite simple and is a recommended fish , even for beginners . The size that this type of fish reaches is the only handicap that can cause us to not keep it in our fish community.

Remember that its growth takes place very quickly and that you eat the rest of the fish that are smaller than him. Astronotus, like all large and omnivorous cichlids must live in an aquarium with capacity for more than 200 liters.

It is advisable to keep this fish without the company of other fish .

Natural habitat

Astronotus was first discovered in 1831 . It is native to South America , specifically the Amazon River basin, the Negro River, the Paraná River and the Paraguay River.

Coincidentally Oscar was introduced in China, Australia, Florida and Chile. Here it acclimatized quite quickly and extinguished much of the native marine fauna. It is considered an invasive fish.

Physical characteristics

Oscar has a bulky, oval body and a large head, with thick and large lips.

What size can it reach?

They have come to see specimens of up to 45 cm living in their natural habitat. In contrast, aquariumspecimens measure about 20 to 25 cm.

How much can you live?

They can live more than 10 years . Everything will depend on the living conditions of the fish.

What colors do you have?

The species that live in our aquariums have dark hues combined with orange and red spots on the back and gills. They have a large black dot with orange borders on the head. Due to this characteristic this fish was called astronotus ocellatus.

You will notice that the Oscars change color often when they are stressed, during fights or when they are protecting their territory.

Maintenance difficulties

Although Oscar is an intelligent and easy-to-care fish, we must keep in mind that the size and peaceful behavior during his childhood will not be the same during adulthood. During its juvenile time the fish will tell me about 3 cm and you can keep it with any other fish.

But as we have said before this cichlid grows very fast. Therefore, we must be careful that aquarium shares when it grows.

Another aspect that you should take into account before acquiring this species is that its food, like the same one that will be quite expensive for you economically.

Oscar fish feed

We are facing an omnivorous fish . In its natural habitat it feeds on both live food and plants. Insects, larvae, zooplacton, plants and algae as well as live fish are the basis of their daily diet.

In captivity you must feed in the same way you do in your natural environment.

It is recommended to give frozen live food . In this way we will prevent our sick animal due to bacteria.

We can give you earth worms, crickets, prawns, fish fillets, mussel meat, frog larvae, grasshoppers and large foods . You can also introduce other live fish such as guppies and goldfish, though, making sure before these fish are healthy. When we introduce live fish as food for Oscar we risk that if they have any disease they transmit it to our pet.


Here you have a video where this cichlid fish eats a mouse. It is therefore not advisable to put it with aquarium partners who can be easy prey for this majestic animal.

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