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How Long do Oscar Fish Live in Captivity?

Depending the care of their owners, Oscars can have a lifespan of 10 to 20 years. This is why it is important to do your best when it comes to diet, tank conditions and stress management. If you want your fish to be around for longer, you need to do your homework and learn more about his needs.

There are many factors that determine how long your Oscar is going to live. The good news is that the control over their lifespan is almost completely in your hands. Learning more about the fish you keep at home is what will make you an experienced fish keeper.

Of course, people always make mistakes and it is understandable especially if you are a beginner fish keeper. That is why we are here, to explain you how to take proper care of your precious pet. You can start doing things right with your Oscar just by reading this article.

Without further ado, let’s go through all the needs you need to meet in order to extend the lifespan of your Oscar fish!

How to Extend the Longevity of Your Oscar?

As we mentioned, the overall health of any fish species depends on the care of the owner. We have prepared a list for you that summarizes all the different ways you can ensure a long and healthy life for your pet.

As long as you do your best to satisfy all these needs every day, your Oscar is going to feel great. This list also allows you to realize the things you did wrong all along. If you are already doing all these things, you can be sure that your Oscar will live nearly 20 years.

Good and variety of food

We can’t stress it enough how important it is to feed your Oscar high-quality foods. There are indeed many cheap commercial foods available in the pet store. However, looking at the price is a pretty bad way to go about it.

What you need to check is the different kinds of nutrition that fish food provides. Also, feeding your Oscar the same food every day is not a healthy option. This species needs a variety of fruits, vegetables, insect larvae, feeder fish and other meat-based foods.

You can make their lives longer just by introducing variety and quality into their diet.

Good water parameters

Every fish species prefers specific water parameters. Oscars thrive the most in a water temperature of 74-81 degrees Fahrenheit. They prefer the acidity to be 6-8 pH and the water hardness should be 5-20KH. Moreover, you can largely contribute to your Oscar’s well-being just by keeping the water clean.

This can be achieved with proper filtration and frequent water changes. By installing a filter and removing leftover foods from the tank, you can minimize ammonia and nitrite levels too. If the water parameters frequently deviate from the abovementioned values, it can cause a lot of stress to your Oscar.

Reduce stress

There are many health problems related to stress. Not to mention that being under stress all the time can shorten the lifespan of your Oscar in of itself. First off, try to position your tank somewhere where sudden movements near the tank are minimized.

Children, other pets or house guests can scare your Oscar if they happen to move around the tank too often. Also, if you keep your Oscar fish with tank mates, make sure each of them has enough space. Overcrowding is a huge stressor too.

In case there are other aggressive fish around your Oscar, it always helps to break their line of sight. You can do so by using plants, rocks, caves, driftwood or other decoration.

Treat disease quickly

If your Oscar fish seems lethargic or barely wants to move or eat, it might be a sign that he is sick. The same applies if you see some lesions on his body. If you notice any unusual behavior or change in appearance, it is best to suppose that your fish has a disease.

Not sure what is the problem? Then call the veterinarian as soon as possible and he will help you find it out. The quicker you treat the disease, the less time there is for it to do long-lasting harm.

How Long do Oscars Live in the Wild?

Out in the wild, Oscars don’t live nearly as long as the ones people keep in a home aquarium. You can hardly even compare the two because there are just too many factors that keeps their health at risk. Some of them are even life-threatening.

There are diseases, predators lurking, birds looking for their prey, water pollution and deviations from ideal water parameters. Because of this pure chaos, they only live 1 to 3 years in their natural habitat.

Do Oscar Fish Grow Until They Die?

Oscar fish reach their full size and become adults relatively fast. They grow as much as 1 inch every single month. Approximately at one years of age, they reach their full size. This is also why it is dangerous to let them grow up with smaller fish in the same tank.

One day, they are going to be big enough to eat their smaller tank mates.

Wrapping Up

We can conclude that Oscars can live a long life if you take good care of them. It all depends on how well you feed them and the way you take care of their aquarium environment overall. In captivity, they have the luxury of living an incredibly long life compared to how long they live out in the wild.

Keeping your fish healthy is important and not only because you can make their life longer. Healthy food, decent water parameters and good conditions in general can make life less stressful for them. Hopefully, this article has helped you learn more about how to keep your Oscar fish happy and healthy.

Most of what you have learned from this article is going to help you take good care of most other fish species as well.

avatar I’m Julia, and I used to work in a fish store for over 5 years. On this blog I help beginners care for their cichlids and share my experience and research on various fishkeeping related topics.

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