Need Help With Jack Dempsey Tankmates

  • #1
Hello all,

I have a year old Jack Dempsey (3-4") and a bn pleco in a 65 gallon. There is also a single australian rainbowfish (2-2.5") in the tank. I am trying to find tank mates to restock my aquarium. It looks very bare with the JD in his cave coming out now and then and the lone rainbow fish circling. The JD leaves the rainbow fish and pleco alone completely. There is no aggression. So I bought 6 giant danios but had to return them a week later because the JD ate two. I believe it was because they were too small when I got them, but that is the problem. Petsmart, Petco (the only places I can get fish from, other than online) supply fish that are too small for the JD. That is why I hesitate to just resupply the rainbowfish school, I would have to buy them around an inch or less.

I don't believe this is a problem of aggression, but it could be. I searched for fish online, but my parents won't let me spend any more than $40 max, and I know that's tough because of shipping and all. I previously looked at giant danios, australian rainbowfish, tiger barbs, but they are all too small in store and expensive online. An alternative option would be to sell the Jack, because it is annoying maintaining a tank that you barely enjoy.

My question is what tank mates would you suggest, and where could I get them from? Do you think selling the JD and starting fresh would be a better option based on the circumstances? I would prefer to stick with the JD, but it might not be possible if I want to have more fish.

Thank you
  • #2
JD are far from community fish and can reach almost a foot in size. You’re going to have major problems if you keep trying to add docile fish, even Barbs.
  • #3
I have a JD and a BP. The BP is more aggressive than the JD. At one point I had 18 columbian tetras and a Severum. About a month ago I only had 13 tetras left and a dead Severum.

When I removed the Tetras and the dead Severum they hid. They would hide like 23 hours of the day and come out for food.

They were so used to having more tank mates they were fine. So I restocked and placed a starry night, green terror and a firemouth into the tank. I also have a T-Bar and a convict in QT. All the new fish are aggressive.

This far they seem to be doing quite well right now. I also added more hiding spots as well.

So maybe consider getting more aggressive tank mates that can hold their own.
  • #4
JDs are not really aggressive in my experience compared to some of the other Central Americans I keep.
For example among these I keep, JD tend to be the least aggressive
1) Texas
2) Jaguars
3) Flowerhorns
4) Red Devils
5) Midas
6) Trimacs

In fact I have a female JD living happily with a group of juvenile Uarus. But again individual fish's temperament would vary.

But I believe even the mails should do okay with Oscars, Green Terrors and Blood Parrots...
  • #5
Well you just listed the most aggressive SA Cichlids Trust me, I’ve seen them get real nasty. Hence why they’re named after a Boxer.
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  • #6
Based on your replies, I feel like selling the JD would prevent the risk of more fish dying and allows me to safely stock the tank. But I have no idea how I'm going to sell the JD, let alone give it somewhere because my local fish stores don't take any fish, even for free.

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