Blue Oscar Fish Species Profile – How to Care Blue Oscar Fish

The Blue Oscar Fish has a characteristic black lateral stripe running from the eye to the base of the tail. The background color is greenish with dark blotches that are outlined in blue or gold. Some specimens show iridescence on most surfaces, whereas others are dull overall.

Blue Oscar Fish Characteristics:

Blue Oscar Fish Species Profile – How to Care Blue Oscar Fish

One of the most popular cichlids of all time is the Oscar fish. It has a characteristic black lateral stripe running from the eye to the base of the tail. The background color is greenish with dark blotches that are outlined in blue or gold, some specimens show iridescence on most surfaces whereas others are dull overall.

Blue Oscar have more vivid coloring on their face and fins then normal Oscar. Some breeder claim that these traits come through selective breeding but this is not true since it can be found wild too where they are more common. Blue Oscar do look very pretty though!

Blue Oscar Fish Origin:

Blue Oscar are selectively bred result of many years of efforts made by breeders. They come from wild stock of Oscar fish, naturally found in the Paraguayan waters of the Paraná River basin.

Blue Oscar Fish Size:

The average adult size for this species is about 16 inches (40 cm) long, but they have been known to grow up to 20.5″ (52 cm) in length and weigh more then 4 pounds (1.8 kg). [In captivity expect around 18 inches (~45 cm)]. A 120 L aquarium can house a single specimen very comfortably while a 180 L tank is needed for a pair or a small group. If you plan on keeping a larger number of Oscar, they will need an even larger tank, with at least L being recommended for 6 specimens.

Blue Oscar Fish PH:

Oscar are quite adaptable to a range of pH values, but the best results are achieved in slightly hard water with around pH 7-7.5 or even up to 8 if you wish. They do not require any specific GH (general hardness) levels as they live in water that is typically found in most parts of the Amazon basin which has no particular GH needs.

Blue Oscar Fish Colors and Markings:

Blue Oscar (and albino Oscar as well as other color forms) come from selective breeding where breeders were trying for new colors and markings. Thus many different types of Oscar can be found including white, yellow, orange and red specimens. The most popular of these are the orange/red Oscar Fish that can be found in very limited numbers on color forms.

Blue Oscar Fish Aquarium:

Blue Oscar have stout, cigar-shaped bodies with a back somewhat arched when fully grown and an upturned mouth ideal for browsing on algae growing on rocks or tank walls. They show some parental care for their young fry, even involving them in cleaning activities after they reach about 1 inch (2 cm) in length.

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Blue Oscar Fish Tankmates:

The size of your Oscar tank mates should be carefully chosen to avoid being eaten by them once they get too large for your aquarium, since aggression is extremely common this species. When starting out with a single OSCAR, it is safest to keep it in a 55-75 L (13-20 gallon) tank until it reaches about 12 inches (30 cm). That way you will only need to worry about the space requirements of your Oscar and not those of its tank mates as well.

Blue Oscar Fish Care:

Blue Oscar do quite well in most community tanks as long as some basic rules are followed:

Oscar should be introduced into established tanks with plenty of hiding places, preferably rock structures for this species. Rocks should also be arranged so that there is no open space between rocks and bogwood or plants where an oscar could get stuck and setup camp over several days time, thus inviting aggression from other tankmates. Make sure to remove any bogwood or live plants from a tank if you plan on introducing an oscar as they will attempt to dig around and uproot them, making a mess in the process.

While these fish are relatively peaceful with others of their own species during initial introduction, once established Oscar become very aggressive towards similar looking fish that enter their territory, including members of their own species. This is true even when both types of fish have been together for many months without problems occurring until one day the Oscar suddenly attacks its tankmate just because it somehow feels threatened by it. In general other cichlids should be avoided as tankmates since Oscar do not get along well with these either despite often being sold as such.

Blue Oscar Fish Lifespan:

Oscar are not particularly long-lived aquarium species, with 5-6 years being about average for this species in captivity. There are reports of specimens living long lives in the right conditions, but don’t expect your blue or albino Oscar to live longer than 8 years max under the most optimal of circumstances. Some reports indicate that they can live even beyong age 10 when kept properly. Only experience will tell how long yours will last before passing on.

Blue Oscar Fish Diet and Feeding:

Blue Oscar are omnivorous bottom feeders that require a varied diet consisting of both meaty items like brine shrimp and bloodworms as well as algae based flakes and pellets. To keep them in the best health make sure to feed them a varied diet including greenstuffs and other vegetables in order to cover their natural need for plant matter. When in doubt about what food you should offer, flakes and pellets are always safe choices since they contain algae and spirulina based ingredients that will provide your fish with all the nutrients it needs.

Blue Oscar Fish Differences:

Blue Oscar (both albino and blue forms) are very similar when young but become quite different as they mature:

Albino Oscar have orange markings when young which changes to white when adults. They also have dark blackish/brown eyes compared to the bluish eyes of blue Oscar.

Albino Oscar also have a yellowish and heavily spotted ventral area and more intense coloration overall.

Blue Oscar have bright red markings when young which changes to blue as adults. They also have dark black eyes compared to the bluish/whitish eyes of albino Oscar. Blue Oscar also lack the intense coloration found on albinos of this species, with an extremely faded or white ventral area that is sometimes covered in brown spots instead.

Blue Oscar Fish Breeding:

Oscar are not particularly easy breeders for most aquarists since they require very specific water parameters in order to successfully reproduce, necessitating advanced equipment and regular water changes throughout their breeding period. Even when set up optimally, Oscar are relatively difficult to breed since they can eat their fry if given the chance instead of protecting them as other cichlids do.

Conclusion:

Overall blue Oscar are not an ideal choice for beginner aquarists due to their need for precise water conditions that often require more advanced setups than the average hobbyist would have available. They are also generally rather large and become very territorial as adults, making them quite a challenge to own whether you plan on breeding or simply keeping one in your tank for decoration purposes.