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Hello all,

I adopted a Jack Dempsey today. I don't know anything about these fish except some rather vague info I've been able to google (preferable water temp, feed a 'variety' of foods, etc). He's about 6 or 7 inches long. I assume he needed a home because he was aggressive or too big for the tank, the people at the store didn't know.

He's in a 50 gallon tank and is the only fish. The tank has all relevant accoutrements.

I'm trying to get some more info so that I can take the best care of him that I can. The people at the store sold me Hikari staple cichlid pellets and frozen krill (they said to give a little krill 2x a week). They did not know what he was eating before.

Are the hikari pellets ok? What size is best for a fish this size? I got the mini pellet. How much should he eat per day? I've never had a fish this large so I have no idea and don't want to overfeed. The bag says 2-3 times per day as much as he'll eat in a few minutes. Well, that's what all the fish food says and if I fed that much to a beta or a goldfish they'd die so I assume that's the same for a cichlid? He didn't seem to see the food when I put it in, I don't know if he ate any of it. I have a floating ring to keep it from scattering about.

Advice would be appreciated, thanks.
 

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What is the foot print on the tank? The pellets are good. I use all of the hikari pellets with my jds for variety. Since your jack is mature you can feed once every other day. Once a day maybe twice. I recommend getting the bigger pellets and if your jack can't eat them (unlikely) crush them in to smaller pieces. How long has the jack been in your tank? If he is new give him time to adjust, fish can go weeks without eating so just keep an eye out. I suggest feeding and watching from a distance. If your jack still doesn't eat try blood worms , I have never seen a jd turn its nose up at blood worms. Good luck
 

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I he or she (if you post a pic we can tell you) is goin to be the only fish in the tank, than you have plenty space, so as long as you have an adequate sized filter and one or two hiding places (caves) it should be plenty happy. You could try and find it a mate at your LFS (local fish store) then you could get fry. If this dosent interest you, you could get some dither fish and maybe a small pleco.
They do get aggresive so make sure if you put a female its a similar size or if you put other fish that they are small enough to not attract aggression and are not themselves aggresive (dumb enough to fight a JD.)

I have 6 JD's (3 are 3.5-4 inches and 3 are 2.5-3 inches) in a 55 gal tank with two 60 gal rated filters running. I feed them a small amount of omega one cichlid pellets three to four times a week and frozen brine with spirulina once a week and I have live java moss if they want to nibble on that. The only reason I have so many JD's in one tank is Im waiting for them to pair up. Once I get a pair Ill remove the others as they begin to get aggressive.

I know that was way more info than you wanted but took me several months to find out so hopefully it helps. Good luck JD's are awesome some will even eat from your hand.
 

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Cichlids are a smarter than goldfish in that I doubt they would eat too much and die. The Hikari pellets are fine, thats my food of choice for my fish as well. Mini pellets are a bit small for a JD that size though, he'll still eat them but medium or large pellets would probably work better for him. Feeding him once a day would be plenty, as far as him not eating, he's still adjusting to your tank so give him a little while and once he gets comfortable he'll start eating.

Also give him places to hide, JDs and cichlids in general like cover, makes them feel safer. So add some artificial plants, caves, or clay flowerpots for him to hide in.
 
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