Главная 7 Aquarium fish 7 Astronotus fishes

Astronotus fishes

maintenance, care, compatibility

In nature, these fish are omnivores, they eat a variety of food, including: insects, larvae, zooplankton, plants and algae, fish, invertebrates and amphibians.

In an aquarium, this is extremely unpretentious in feeding fish, although it is preferable to give them animal feed. It is best to feed with artificial high-quality food for large cichlids – pellets, granules, tablets. The benefit of them is now a wide choice, from Chinese to European manufacturers.

Additionally, give live or frozen food. They love earthworms and crawls, but also eat crickets, shrimps, fish fillets, mussels, tadpoles, grasshoppers and other large food.

Naturally, they are given fish and small ones, for example, guppies or veiltails, but this is best done only if you are completely sure that the fish are healthy and will not carry the disease.

Astronotuses are very greedy and insatiable fish, so it is important not to overfeed them, otherwise diseases and death are possible.

At one time, the cichlid was fed meat of mammals, but now it must be avoided. The fact is that due to the high content of protein and fat in such meat, it is poorly digested by fish, leading to obesity and dystrophy of internal organs.

It is better to feed with the same beef heart once a week in order not to overload the fish.

Astronotuses belong to the Cichl family, which is also called the “sea dog” for their amazing ability to recognize their owner, eat from their hands and allow them to iron themselves. Astronotus got its name from the Greek language, where “aster” means “ray”, and “notus” means “back”.

This aquarium fish is often referred to as “oscar”, “peacock eye”, “velveteen cichlid”, “water buffalo”.

The fish received the name “ocellular or ocellarus” due to spots on the body that resemble eyes. All types of astronotus are beautiful and original, have an extraordinary bright appearance and solid size.

The breeding and maintenance of the astronotus does not present great difficulties, due to which the fish has become a popular guest of aquariums.


The reproduction of astronotus is recommended to achieve the achievement of their age of two years in a separate spawning. Breeding astronotus requires the joint maintenance of several fish, so manufacturers will be able to choose their own pair. In order for the reproduction of fish to proceed comfortably, it is necessary to place 5-6 pieces in an aquarium per 300 liters and ensure good filtration in it.

Presence of soil is undesirable.

The spawning of astronotus proceeds by the darkening of the color of the fish, spotted divorces on the body become red. It is possible to breed fish in the general aquarium, but during this period the fish become aggressive and dangerous for their neighbors.

Propagation is stimulated using a variety of feeding, and the substitution of water with boiled water with a temperature increase of 3 ° C. The remaining water parameters remain the same.

In the spawning aquarium, you should install several large stones on which the fish will lay their eggs. How many eggs astronotuses are able to postpone, depends on the conditions of their maintenance, usually females give up to 1000 eggs and are distinguished by special parental care.

Astronotus protects caviar, fanning it with its fins, drives away other fish and removes unviable eggs. Fry begin to swim to day 10 and feed on the parental epithelial secret. Then they can be fed with small cyclops, egg yolk, chopped pipemaker, nematodes and live dust.

Young fish is painted black with white specks.

Astronotuses get along well with other fish at a younger age. After reaching puberty, they show aggression and fight even with their relatives, so it is better to keep the astronotus in pairs in a separate aquarium. Astronotuses should not coexist with small fish that can become food for them.

Good compatibility will be with large cichlids, mail catfish, chromis, but all these fish are fighting for personal space. If the owner does not know what to do in such cases, then it is recommended to plant them all at the same time in the aquarium.

Astronotuses belong to the most demanded aquarium fish, despite their dimensions. Intelligent behavior and unique habits turn the content of these fish into an exciting movie with the participation of the owner.

Breeding these fish is also an entertaining process in which astronotus show their best qualities as caring parents.

Astronotus (Astronotus ocellatus), also known as Velvet cichlids or peacock fish, are large fish that live long enough (8-12 years) and grow to impressive size. For astronotus is characterized not only beauty, but also the mind, which can not be said about many other aquarium fish.

With good care, astronotus wakes up even a peculiar attachment to the owner of the aquarium, which in the first place, has a beneficial effect on him.

In order for astronotus to live comfortably in an aquarium, they need to provide warm, clean water and good food. The water temperature should not be below 23 degrees and should not exceed 27 degrees. To maintain these parameters, the aquarist will need a thermostat.

If the fish hold for some time in the water with low temperature, then their immune system will suffer, and this means that their body will lose resistance to various diseases.

In general, the content of astronotus in captivity is not a super-complicated matter, but still requires care and observance of certain features. For example, for the maintenance of astronotus you need to buy a large aquarium, as the fish itself is large and likes to swim plenty. Associated equipment for filtering water and lighting will also be required.

Water in a large aquarium must be filtered with a powerful filter, since the content of astronotus in the polluted water is impossible.

In the process of vital activity, aquarium astronotuses produce a large amount of waste, therefore, in addition to filtering the water, it is necessary to replace it by 30 percent every week.

When feeding you need to consider that aquarium astronotus need protein, as they are predators. In nature, almost all types of astronotus most often eat other small fish.

A special “predation” tiger astronotus is different, which will never give up live food, so you need to carefully select your neighbors in the aquarium. Self feeding astronotus need to perform once or twice a day. Raw fish pieces, earthworms, squids, etc. are perfect for feeding.

And the fry of the astronotus must be fed with artemia, daphnia and small cyclops.

It is worth remembering that some astronotus diseases can develop due to dirty water, so you need to throw enough food so that the fish can cope with it in 2 minutes. As for the treatment of diseases of astronotus, arising due to poor-quality water, then it should be started with the replacement of this water, and then you can begin the use of drugs.

It is better to slightly reduce the portion for feeding astronotus, than to treat them later.

Adults are not afraid to spawn next to other fish, due to their decisive character. As a rule, astronotus multiplication begins with the laying of eggs on a flat rock in a secluded place.

It is not necessary to apply a lot of effort to reproduction, as the fish will do everything themselves. That is, the reproduction of astronotus must proceed, as in natural conditions.

When astronotus fry are born, parents constantly keep close to them. In nature, parenting is beneficial for fry of an astronotus, since there is a secret on their skin that the fry with pleasure feed on.

In conditions of captivity, this type of feeding of young animals is observed quite rarely, but still it takes place.

Unfortunately, representatives of this type of fish get along far not with any aquarium inhabitants. Nevertheless, there are such types of fish with which they are able to lead a normal and relaxed lifestyle, namely, with tsikhlazomami, pterygopliche and synodontis.

The maintenance of astronotus with other fishes is quite a simple matter, they can be companied in an aquarium with Central and South American cichlids of a moderate nature, not aggressive, but not too calm. In this case, both of these representatives of the underwater kingdom must get into the aquarium at the same time, otherwise they will recapture the territory.

Many wonder what to do if astronotics fight? In this case, you can either lower the temperature of the water, or remove one representative for a while.

Despite the fact that astronotus’s compatibility with other fish is not very great, nevertheless, their neighbors can also become: arovan, shark catfish (Siamese pangasius), Indian knifefish, parrot cichlid, shark bal, barley-shaped, hoplosternum beige as well as porous perigopolis.

Deciding to have such a fish in yourself, be prepared for the fact that you will not be able to live the wonderful living corner with a lot of plants. Since this “harmful” fish will either eat algae, or simply dig them up. They love to turn everything upside down, move it from one place to another, stir up the soil.

Therefore, it is better to purchase ordinary artificial plants, massive snags and large heavy stones for decoration.

For the maintenance of astrotonus in an aquarium as a pair, they will need a “lodge” with a volume of not less than 100 liters, with good filtration and the lid must be closed, otherwise the fish will be able to jump out of the aquarium. Water temperature can vary from 18 to 28 degrees.

Feed these amazing and intelligent fish can be insects, larvae, worms, tadpoles, meat 1-2 times a day. If you give them due attention, you can feed the astronotus from your hands and even stroke it.

Tiger astronotus, Oscar (lat. Astronotus ocellatus) is a freshwater fish of the family Cichlids, which hails from South American waters. This fish was first described in the 1930s.

Artificially this species was introduced to other regions: North America, Australia and Asia, where it acclimatized well. Wild Astronotus eats crustaceans, small fish, insects and worms.

The contents of the aquarium astronotus will give a person a lot of joy. This is a smart and smart little fish that recognizes its owner, allows itself to be stroked, can take food from the hands.

However, it may bite. Wild tiger astronotus can be found on the market, but many color forms have been developed that attract customers.

You should also take into account the fact that the content of this species in the aquarium does not cause trouble.

The content of tiger aquarium astronotus is simple even for beginning aquarists. But it is very important to monitor the purity of the water – these fish are sensitive to impurities of ammonia and nitrite.

Replace 20% of the water in the tank once a week, siphon the soil, removing the rest of the feed.

For a pair of adult individuals, you will need a reservoir with a capacity of 400-500 liters. If you plan to keep astronotus with other fish, you will have to choose an aquarium even more spacious.

It will protect all water pets, reduce the number of conflicts. Aeration is important because these cichlids love oxygen-rich water (O2).

See how the astronotuses fight.

Cichlids are smart fish, so it is easy for them to damage aquarium equipment. Heaters must have thermal protection, or they must be covered with large stones or other decorations. Fish can attack the scenery and this can lead to serious injuries.

So that it does not harm itself and the equipment, make sure that there are details in the aquarium that would distract the pet’s attention (plants, grottoes, tunnels, sand pumps, and other interesting decorations).

The bottom of the tank can be covered with sandy soil in which the fish will dig. You can plant plants with a strong root system, or pot species, otherwise the astronotus will dig them up and eat.

Anubias, aponogeton, cryptocoryne will survive in an environment where astronotus live. Recommended parameters of the aquatic environment for keeping fish: temperature 22-26 ° C, hardness 15-20o, acidity – 6.5-7.5 pH.

As for feeding, the Oscar astronotus is an omnivorous fish, which can be given different types of food. But it is better to feed with high-quality food – tablets, granules, flakes, live and frozen foods.

Oscar can feast on earthworms, crickets, shrimps, fish fillets, mussels, grasshoppers, tadpoles. It is possible to give food to small live fish, but purchased from trusted suppliers, so as not to carry diseases into the water.

Feeding portion – 2 times a day.

Astronotus is a freshwater fish that can be aggressive to other fish, has a territorial behavior. Is it possible to keep with other types of fish? Cichlids live better in pairs, in a large area, where no one bothers them.

Good compatibility with eight-band cychlasmas, large-sized plexostomus, managuan cichlazoms, arovanas, black pacos.

Astronotus is a freshwater fish of the Cichlow or Cichlid family. Their sizes are relatively large, so in the aquarium the feeding of astronotus must be complete and varied. The length of the aquarium instance can reach 25 cm.

As endemics of South American rivers, they prefer food rich in proteins, in particular, small fish and meat of small warm-blooded animals.

The astronotics in the aquarium behave like voracious fish, and the resulting food is digested for a long time – for 2 days. Wild astronotus can eat different foods – if not enough protein, can go to the plant. Coastal and aquatic plants, fruit falling in the river they love very much.

An adult and very hungry astronotical half-starving can grab a rodent from a tree and have a snack. Perhaps for this reason they grow large in nature – 45-47 cm in length.

Aquarium fish of this species eat everything that the owner gives, and if they are offended or smell the blood from the wound, they can bite the finger. Be careful when feeding from your hands.

Some razvodchiki keep at home mice, or other small rodents, even breed live-bearing fishes of the Peciliaceae family (guppies, swordtails, gourami). This is all to feed them to the astronotus.

Perhaps the spectacle is not for the faint of heart, but taste habits of such large cichlids. For a more saturated color scales, minced seafood can add a little red bell pepper, but do not overdo it, otherwise the food is not the fish do not eat.

Look at the feeding of the astronotus with goldfish.

Young animals can still eat “fish milk” glands, which are formed on the skin of their parents. Fry also need to be fed with nauplii of Artemia, Cyclops, Daphnia, as well as Tetra Cichlid pellets.

As the babies get older, in 2-4 months, transfer them to other foods – grated frozen squid, washed and chopped earthworms.

There is an opinion that astronotus needs constant feeding from chicken meat and beef heart. In fact, the meat of warm-blooded animals can be harmful to health. Animal fats clog up blood vessels, deform the organs of the gastrointestinal tract.

Sliced ​​beef heart can be given, but very rarely, so that the fish do not get used to it. But sea food, such as gammarus, they can be given without fear.

It is not recommended to give fish caught from rivers, lakes and other urban reservoirs. Also, you can not buy them store fish in a living form. Such products may infect the water.

In the spring, you can make blanks of grasshoppers, dragonflies, crickets, tadpoles, snails. Freeze them, and periodically give the fish. Astronotus can take vegetable food: lettuce, spinach, peas, sliced ​​cucumbers and zucchini.

When choosing branded feeds, it is important that they include astaxanthin – a necessary element in the diet, which has a beneficial effect on the health of the fish.

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