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What Do Oscar Fish Eat? (Feeding Guide for Beginners)

What Do Oscar Fish Eat? (Feeding Guide for Beginners)

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This post is written to the author's best knowledge and is not intended to be used in place of veterinary advice. In addition, this post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Oscar fish are a very popular type of pet fish. People enjoy caring for them because they can be so much fun to own.

They have great personalities and they’re also fairly easy to care for overall. Even beginners can have a simple time caring for these fish.

As beginner-friendly fish, it makes sense that they’ve become so popular. Hardy fish still need to be cared for properly to survive, though.

If you’re new to caring for Oscars, it’s important to learn about their care requirements. Feeding the fish is one of the things you should focus on the most.

What do Oscar fish eat? Do you need to be strict about what you feed them to keep them in good health?

Read on to learn everything that you need to know about feeding Oscars. You’ll get the answers to many common questions so you can have the best experience caring for these fish.

Best Food for Oscar Fish

You’re going to feed Oscar fish many different things to keep them healthy. Oscars are omnivores that need to eat both meaty foods and veggies to thrive.

Typically, you’ll feed Oscars cichlid flakes that are specially formulated to give them the right nutrients. This is the type of food that you’ll be giving to Oscars each day.

You might also give the Oscars some type of nutritional pellet. Pellets are easy to find at the pet store and you can get pellets that are perfect for large cichlids such as Oscars.

Aside from flakes and pellets, you’ll also likely want to feed Oscars live food from time to time. You can feed Oscars many different types of meaty foods.

Of course, you don’t necessarily need to give Oscars food that’s truly alive. There are various freeze-dried options that will work just as well.

Below, you’ll continue to learn about various types of Oscar fish food. This will give you the answers to many questions that people have about feeding Oscar fish.

How Often Do You Feed Oscar Fish?

It’s best to feed your Oscar fish each day. Daily feeding sessions will ensure that the Oscars get the nutrients that they need to stay healthy.

Juvenile Oscar fish need to eat more than adult Oscars. If you’re caring for a juvenile fish, you should feed it three times per day.

When feeding an adult Oscar fish, it’s better to feed it twice per day. Feeding the fish one large meal per day is generally not recommended.

Make sure that you feed your fish consistently. It’s likely better to keep a consistent schedule than it is to feed your fish at random times each day.

How Much to Feed Oscar Fish

How much to feed your fish will depend on what you’re feeding it. If you’re feeding the Oscars nutritional pellets, you should only feed it three or four at a time.

You don’t want to feed the fish too much. Be careful and try not to go overboard.

It’s better to feed the fish multiple times per day and give it smaller meals each time. Two meals for an adult Oscar will be perfect.

Since juvenile Oscars need a bit more food, you’ll feed them three times per day. It’s still best not to feed the fish too much at once.

Oscar Fish Feeding Time

The feeding time of the Oscar fish should be consistent. It’s best to set a schedule and try to stick to it.

When caring for adult Oscars, it might be best to feed the fish in the morning before you go to work. Then you can feed the fish again when you return home from work.

If you have a standard 9-5 schedule, it’ll be easy to maintain this feeding schedule. Juvenile Oscars should be fed three times per day, so it’d be better to feed them in the early morning hours, the afternoon, and the early evening hours.

Spacing things out like this is for the best. It helps to keep the Oscars in good health.

Can Oscar Fish Overeat?

It’s very easy to overfeed an Oscar fish. These fish will not stop eating when they’re starting to get full.

The Oscars are very messy eaters, too. It could wind up making your tank rather dirty if you feed them too much.

Aside from this, Oscars might eat so much food that they will become constipated. When this happens, Oscars will experience issues with their swim bladders.

The swim bladder is an organ that controls buoyancy. When the swim bladder malfunctions, it’s going to make it impossible for the fish to swim around normally.

It often leads to fish swimming upside down. Fish will have a hard time getting around when they’re in such a state.

To alleviate constipation, feed the Oscars boiled peas. It should keep their digestive tract moving and they will return to normal.

You don’t want to allow the Oscars to overeat, though. Do your best to feed these fish small meals to avoid constipation issues.

Can Oscars Eat Fruit?

It’s normal for Oscars to eat fruit. These fish will enjoy being fed fruit, but you should cut the fruit up before giving it to them.

Also, you must make sure that you remove any seeds that might be contained in the fruit. There are all sorts of fruit options that you can look into.

Many Oscar fish owners give their fish pieces of watermelon. So long as you’re careful to remove the seeds, this can be a good treat for the fish.

Oranges and cantaloupes will be good fruits to give to Oscar fish, too. Bananas are another popular option because of how easy it is to slice bits off to give to the fish.

Overall, giving Oscar fish different types of fruits can be a good experience. You can make this an occasional treat for your Oscars.

Can Oscar Fish Eat Apples?

Apples are a fine fruit to give to Oscar fish. Just cut the apples up first and your fish will enjoy the snack.

You’ll find that Oscar fish really love eating apples. It’s safe to give apples to Oscars so you don’t need to be wary.

There are other fruits that can be given to the fish as well. For instance, Oscars are known to enjoy eating mangoes.

Even grapes can make good snacks for these fish. There are so many fruit options to look into that it’d be difficult to mention them all.

What Vegetables Can Oscars Eat?

As you’d expect, Oscars will like eating vegetables. They like vegetables because they’re omnivores that are known to eat plant matter in the wild.

If you chop up common types of veggies, they can be fed to Oscar fish. Some of the most popular veggies to give to these fish are cucumbers and zucchini.

Both cucumbers and zucchini are easy to chop into small slices. You can then give them to the fish in small quantities so that they won’t overeat.

Peas are also going to be a good choice for the Oscars. Carrots and spinach are other common choices that people turn to when looking for veggies for their Oscar fish.

Don’t feed your Oscars veggies all the time. Use this as a supplement to the standard diet of the Oscars.

Give them veggies as snacks and feed them fish flakes or nutritional pellets daily. Don’t overfeed the fish since that can be detrimental.

Oscar Fish Live Food

Oscar fish love to eat live food. There are all sorts of options that you can choose from when looking to give your Oscars live food.

Live food is something that should be given to Oscars three or four times per week. You don’t want to feed your Oscars these meaty treats more than that.

This is important because too much protein can wind up being a bad thing. You need to give your Oscars a balanced diet.

Therefore, nutritional pellets and cichlid flakes should be the common daily food that Oscars eat. Live food will simply be supplemental food that you give to your fish sometimes.

Below, you’ll learn about different types of live food that you can give to the Oscars. Some options might be more appealing than others.

Can Oscars Eat Mice?

Technically, a large Oscar fish is capable of eating mice. This might seem like an odd food choice for a pet fish, but these fish are omnivores that can grow to be twelve inches long in captivity.

Before you toss mice into the fish tank, it’s important to make sure that your Oscar fish is large enough. The Oscar fish needs to be able to swallow the mouse without having issues.

If the Oscar struggles to consume the mouse, it could cause problems. Thus, it might not be wise to give mice to Oscars until they’re full-grown.

Of course, you can try to pick mice that are small enough that they can be used as treats for Oscars. Keep in mind that you don’t have to feed Oscars mice unless you want to.

There’s no reason to buy mice for Oscars unless you decide that it’d be an interesting thing to do. You can find many other meaty treats to give to these fish that will be easier overall.

Can Oscars Eat Crickets?

You might be surprised to hear that feeding crickets to Oscars isn’t unusual. Many fish owners choose to feed crickets to Oscar fish as snacks.

It’s fine to use crickets as an occasional treat for Oscars. You shouldn’t use crickets as the primary food for Oscars, though.

Stick to feeding your Oscars pellets or cichlid flakes most of the time. Crickets can be used as an occasional source of protein.

Feeding crickets to Oscars won’t be the best way to give these fish protein, though. There are superior options that you will want to look into.

Regardless, you don’t have to hesitate if you want to feed Oscars crickets. Small crickets usually work out best.

Can Oscars Eat Worms?

Yes, Oscars can eat worms and they actually eat worms commonly in the wild. Worms will be a superb source of protein for the fish.

In the wild, you might find Oscars munching on earthworms. These aren’t the only types of worms that they can eat, though.

Many types of worms will be good for Oscars to eat. It’s normal for these fish to consume worms as a source of protein, and you can buy worms to give to the fish from the pet store.

It’s common for Oscar fish owners to buy freeze-dried worms. Or you can thaw out frozen worms and then feed them to your fish.

Feeding the fish live worms will also be perfectly acceptable. Your Oscars will love getting to snack on worms.

Can Oscars Eat Superworms?

Superworms will be perfectly fine to feed to Oscars. Many people say that this is among the best sources of protein that you can give to Oscars.

One good aspect of buying superworms is that they aren’t too expensive. They’ll be a better option as a protein source than crickets.

You’ll find that just one of the superworms contains as much protein as up to twenty crickets. It’s easy to see why many people buy superworms for their Oscars.

It’s simple to find superworms, too. These can easily be purchased from most major pet stores that sell fish food products.

Can Oscars Eat Mealworms?

Mealworms are among the most common types of worms given to Oscars. You can easily find mealworms being sold at various pet stores.

This makes them a good food option for your Oscar fish. Mealworms will be a great addition to your Oscar fish’s diet.

Oscars will love to eat mealworms when they’re alive. You can also purchase them in freeze-dried form if you find that to be more convenient.

You’ll likely find that this will be among the most common types of live food that you’ll give to the Oscars. Don’t hesitate to add mealworms to your shopping list when buying Oscar fish food.

Can Oscars Eat Shrimp?

Shrimp is one of the common types of food that Oscars eat in the wild. Oscars love to eat small crustaceans and the most common type of small crustacean that they consume is shrimp.

There are many types of shrimp that you can give to Oscar fish. They’ll love eating red cherry shrimp and ghost shrimp.

It’s also common for people to feed Oscars cocktail shrimp. You can feed these fish frozen shrimp that you buy from the store so long as you thaw them first.

Shrimp will likely be one of the best live food options that you have. Oscars will love to eat the shrimp and it’ll be easy to obtain shrimp.

For some, feeding the fish frozen shrimp will be the best route to take. Oscars will enjoy eating either live shrimp or frozen shrimp so you can’t go wrong either way.

Can Oscars Eat Prawns?

What about feeding Oscars prawns? Will this be another healthy live food option for the fish?

Yes, prawns are a good type of live food to give to Oscar fish. If you want to purchase prawns to feed to your Oscars, it’ll be something that they’ll enjoy.

The Oscars will happily eat the prawns that you put in the tank. They’ll eat them up just as fast as they do shrimp.

Many Oscar fish owners give their fish prawns as a treat. This could be a good live food option when you want to mix things up.

What to Feed Baby Oscar Fish

Baby Oscar fish will be a bit different than adult Oscar fish. You see, Oscars are going to have smaller mouths when they’re very young.

Since they’ll have smaller mouths, they won’t be able to eat the same foods that adult Oscars eat. You’ll need to feed them specific things until they grow larger.

You can buy small-sized pellets that will fit in the mouths of the baby fish. Crushed-up cichlid flakes can also be a good option for the fish.

Make sure that whatever you’re feeding to the fish will fit in its mouth. You can find tiny shrimp to feed to baby Oscars and some also cut up veggies and fruits into small pieces for these fish.

What Do Oscar Fish Eat in the Wild?

Oscar fish will eat many different types of foods in the wild. As you’ve learned, Oscars are omnivores that will eat plants and various types of meat.

It’s common to see Oscars feasting upon water plants. They’ll also eat insects, shrimp, and other living things that are small enough to fit into their mouths.

Earlier, you learned that Oscars will sometimes eat earthworms in the wild. This is normal for Oscars and they will often come across worms that they can eat.

These fish will eat many things, but you don’t necessarily have to replicate the wild diet when caring for Oscars in a fish tank. It’s fine to feed the fish nutritional pellets or flakes while supplementing the diet with meaty foods.

Can Oscars Eat Fish Flakes?

Yes, fish flakes will be one of the most common things that you’ll feed Oscars. Typically, you’ll feed Oscars cichlid flakes daily.

Fish flakes don’t cost a lot of money. They’re easy to feed to fish and you’re able to purchase them at any pet stores that sell fish products.

You shouldn’t feed your fish just any kind of fish flakes. To give the Oscars the right nutrients, it’s necessary to give them cichlid flakes.

Oscars will likely happily eat other types of flakes. They will gobble up goldfish flakes and many other types of flakes.

However, these flakes aren’t formulated to give Oscars what they need. Therefore, other types of flakes shouldn’t be a regular part of an Oscar fish’s diet.

Oscar Fish Food for Fast Growth

You simply want to feed your Oscars well so that they will grow strong. Make sure that you’re feeding them regularly and that you’re giving them optimal foods.

As you’ve learned, Oscars should be fed cichlid flakes or nutritional pellets daily. These foods have the ideal blend of nutrients that large cichlids such as Oscars need to grow.

You’ll then supplement the diet with foods that contain protein. Feed Oscars foods such as shrimp, worms, crickets, and other types of meaty treats.

These meaty treats can be fed to Oscars three or four times per week. Otherwise, just give the fish the cichlid flakes or nutritional pellets.

Helping your fish to grow as fast as it can is about feeding it consistently. You don’t want to feed the fish too much, but you certainly want to feed it enough so it can stay very healthy.

Final Thoughts

You’ve learned everything that you need to know about feeding Oscars now. These fish need to be fed consistently so they can grow strong and stay healthy.

Juvenile Oscars must be fed three times per day. Adult Oscar fish can be fed twice per day.

Sticking to a consistent schedule is the best option. There are many things that you can feed these omnivorous cichlids.

They like to eat live foods such as shrimp, prawns, mealworms, earthworms, and superworms. It’s even okay to feed them crickets and mice under certain circumstances.

People also regularly feed Oscar fish fruits and veggies. You can give them apples, bananas, cantaloupes, and grapes when you want to feed the fish fruits.

Veggie options include peas, carrots, zucchini, and cucumbers. You just need to be sure to cut the food up into small pieces for the fish.

You should be feeding Oscar fish cichlid flakes or nutritional pellets each day. Other types of food should be supplemental.

Doing your best to avoid overfeeding the fish is imperative. Keep supplemental feeding sessions to three or four times per week.

So long as you follow this advice, it’ll be easy to get good results when caring for these fish. Your Oscars will surely grow fast and remain healthy if you’re doing things right.

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