"Inactive" Jack Dempsey? Help

  1. stiglitz Well Known Member Member

    I have two jack dempsy's one is quite old and is around 10 inches long by far the biggest cichlid in my tank.. i wish i could see him more but the problem is i have this really big decoration and basically all day he sits in it and doesn't do a lot.. he'll occasionally come out but not for more than 10 minutes.. is this normal behavior? p.s i have another JD and he's about 5 inches long and he always stick around with the larger one in the decoration as well..
     
  2. Jeffcameron Member Member

    Yes this can be normal. JD's can be quite territorial so once they find a spot they like they can stay there. The JD I have in my 180G stays inside the sunken ship a lot of the time even though he has plenty of space.
     

  3. stiglitz Well Known Member Member

    Alright. I just figured out why he's acting like this. It's because he doesn't really like humans. I noticed whenever i come downstairs to check on him, hes always out and about, but as soon as i walk past the tank he retreats back into the ornament. When i sit still for about 10 minutes, after he's determined that nothing will walk past the tank, he'll come out again. So basically, whenever someone walks past the tank, he goes and hides. Is this normal?
     

  4. Jeffcameron Member Member

    Yes it can be. It takes fish a while to get use to humans. My breeding pair always hide from me too but I've only had them 6 months or so. The JD in my display tank is very personable. Some take longer than others and some can be timid for a long time.

    You can almost train them not to be scared if you put a tiny bit of food in the tank often. Careful that you don't over do it. This can train the fish to think of food when people are seen rather than to see a threat.
     

  5. stiglitz Well Known Member Member

    okay, that makes sense. yes i guess it will take him a while to get used to me, my two JD's as well as my 5 other fish were all bought off of a previous owner that basically had them for about 10 years. im not sure if he had the JD's and the rest of the cichlid's for 10 years, but he told me the pleco's were of that age. they're huge, both about 13 inches :) i've only had this "fish family" for less than a week, so hopefully they'll become more comfortable as time goes on.