Ornate Eating Problems....

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Jack Dempsey
MFK Member
Sep 22, 2005
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Seattle Area
3 months ago I stocked my 180gallon with the following fish all between 4-6".....(Red Devil, Butikoferi, 2-Mono Peacock Bass, Jardini Arowana, Marble Pim Catfish, Marble Horn Pleco and Ornate Bichir. Even though i will eventually need to thin things out as they all grow to adulthood everything is working out great with no excessive fighting. My only problem is the Bichir, he wont eat and is not at all aggressive during feeding time like the others so when his food is dropped he is in no hurry to eat it until its too late and someone else eats it. I have researched other post and have come to realize that bichirs are very lazy and laid back when it comes to feeding. When i first got it i would put alot of feeder goldfish in the tank and eventually one would swin down in front of the bichir and he would grab it. Now as soon as the goldfish hits the tank the arowana and the peacock bass eat them all in seconds so the bichir has no chance. I also tried beefheart by letting it soak a bit and laying it right in front of the bichir but then the catfish or the RD will come up and grab it but not until it sits there for about a minute. I also tried sinking carnivore pellets that the catfish absolutely loves but the bichir wont touch them. I have had some luck with soaking krill in warm water then putting it at the bottom of the tank but the bichir will eat a few peices sparingly. I fear that unless this guy starts eating and growing he will either starve to death or be eaten by the catfish who is growing rapidly along with all the other occupants. So what can i do ? I'm probably going to trade him in at my lfs if he doesn't start eating more soon.
 

XRAYZ

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Oct 23, 2005
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Tucson, AZ
as the ornate gets more hungry so should its aggresiveness ate feeding time. one method that could work for you is target feeding. put one end of long plastic tube slowly in font of the ornate and put your food in the top end. the food will sink right in front of the bichir giving it first shot at it :thumbsup:
 

beblondie

In Loving Memory
Mar 31, 2005
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chicagoland
See the above.Also when young ornates tend to be very nocturnal try feeding after the lights go out-Anne

for future refenence the jardini when it matures will probably need its own tank they are prone to be very territorial.
 

cougar579

Candiru
MFK Member
May 11, 2005
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Bicirs can go a long time without eating. I had a ornate doit for two months.
 

Burbotman

Goliath Tigerfish
MFK Member
Feb 16, 2006
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Canada
This topic has come up a few times with Bichers being out competed for food by their tank mates. The feed at night is a great suggestion, one that has worked for me is a feeding "cave" set up in the corner of the tank. It is designed so that the bichers can go in and get food dropped down to them, while keeping aggressive tank mates away. Use a feeding tube to drop the food down, soon the bicher will hang out in there at meal time.

This worked great for me until my Jag got big enough to disrupt the cave

2005 pictures 068.jpg

2006 Pictures 019.jpg
 

vanimate

Blue Tier VIP
MFK Member
Jun 3, 2005
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Chicago ŅŞ
:iagree:
Go to the LFS and get a long airlift tube for 2 bucks. Keep feeding him in the same spot and he'll catch on. I had a feeding tube permanently in the back corner on one of my tanks specifically just for my juruense.
 

gl7

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Apr 7, 2006
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malaysia
yeah, my young ornate also shy to come out from the cave when feed time, only move the head out abit to smell on the ground outside but seldom got food passes by...
 
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