Is Oscar Fish Good For Arowana? (Answered)

Lauren Kiekbusch
Is Oscar Good For Arowana?

Is Oscar good for Arowana? As someone who has spent considerable time observing and caring for a variety of fish in home aquariums, I understand the complexities and joys of creating a harmonious aquatic environment.

Arowanas and Oscars are among the most popular fish for aquarium enthusiasts, each known for their unique characteristics and behaviors. But when it comes to sharing a tank, not all fish are compatible. This article aims to shed light on whether these two species can coexist peacefully and what factors you need to consider before introducing them into the same aquarium.

Is Oscar Good For Arowana?

No, Oscar fish are generally not recommended as tank mates for Arowana due to compatibility issues. While both Arowana and Oscar fish are popular choices among aquarium enthusiasts, they differ significantly in temperament and environmental needs. Arowanas, known for their size and unique swimming patterns, require ample space and a peaceful environment.

Compatibility Factors

Here are the compatibility factors of Arowana and Oscar fish;

Size and Space Requirements

Arowanas and Oscars vary greatly in size, which is a crucial factor in their compatibility. Arowanas can grow up to 3 feet, requiring a large tank with plenty of swimming space. Oscars, while smaller, still grow to a substantial size of about 12 inches.

This size disparity means that a large tank is essential to accommodate both species comfortably. Adequate space is not just a matter of comfort; it’s vital for the health and well-being of these fish. In a cramped environment, stress and aggression can escalate, leading to health issues.

Temperament and Behavior

The behavioral traits of Arowanas and Oscars present another compatibility challenge. Arowanas are generally more peaceful but can be territorial. Oscars, known for their intelligence, are often more aggressive and can exhibit territorial behavior, especially in confined spaces.

This difference in temperament can lead to stress and conflict when these species share a tank. It’s crucial to consider these behavioral aspects to prevent potential aggression, which can harm both fish.

Dietary Needs

When it comes to dietary needs, Arowanas and Oscars have both similarities and differences. Arowanas are carnivorous, preferring a diet of meaty foods like shrimp and small fish, while Oscars are omnivores, eating a mix of meat and plant-based foods.

Although there’s some overlap in their diets, the feeding habits and nutritional requirements differ, which can complicate feeding routines in a shared tank. Ensuring each species receives its specific dietary needs without competition or conflict is essential for their health and compatibility in a shared habitat.

Potential Challenges in Cohabitation

The following are the potential challenges intending fishkeepers of Oscar fish and Arowana fish should keep in mind;

Aggression and Territory Issues

The cohabitation of Arowanas and Oscars often leads to aggression and territory disputes. Arowanas, while generally peaceful, can become territorial, especially in confined spaces.

Oscars, known for their assertive demeanor, may provoke or respond aggressively to Arowanas. To mitigate these conflicts, aquarists can provide ample space, hiding spots, and visual barriers in the tank to help each fish establish its territory without encroaching on the other’s space.

Health and Stress Considerations

Incompatibility between Arowana and Oscars can cause stress, leading to health issues like weakened immune systems and increased susceptibility to diseases. Signs of stress in these fish include changes in eating habits, lethargy, and abnormal swimming patterns. Monitoring their behavior closely and ensuring a well-maintained, stress-free environment is crucial for their well-being.

arowana fish

Expert Opinions

Aquarists and fish experts generally advise against keeping Arowanas and Oscars together, citing their differing needs and temperaments. Case studies and real-world experiences often highlight the challenges and rare successes in such cohabitations. These insights emphasize the importance of understanding each species’ specific needs and behaviors before attempting to house them together.

Suitable Tank Mates for Arowana And Oscar

There are several tank mate alternatives for both Arowana fish and Oscar fish and they are as follows;


Arowanas are best paired with fish that share similar size and temperament traits. Suitable tank mates include larger catfish species, Plecostomus, and some types of larger barbs. When introducing new tank mates to Arowanas, it’s important to:

  1. Gradually acclimate the new fish to the tank environment.
  2. Monitor interactions closely for any signs of aggression.
  3. Ensure the tank is spacious enough to allow each fish its own territory.


Oscars can coexist with several species that can match their size and temperament. Good companions include other cichlids of similar size, larger tetras, and Silver Dollars. When introducing new tank mates to Oscars, consider the following:

  1. Introduce the new fish when the Oscars are young to improve acceptance.
  2. Observe their interactions regularly to ensure peaceful coexistence.
  3. Provide enough hiding places and space to reduce stress and territorial behavior.
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