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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have noticed something over the years about large rhoms, that was re-enforced lately by my Venezuelan rhom. There have been many of my large rhoms in the past that have gone through phases where they eat very little or nothing at all for extended periods of time. Often they will not eat for a week, sometimes even two weeks or more. Recently, my Ven. rhom just went through a phase like this, and I thought I would share my observations.

My Venezuelan rhom is about 12-13", and I have had him about a year now. The first several months that I had him, I was really impressed with how aggressively he ate. Anytime I would enter the room, he would charge the front of the tank, and then come to the surface to immediately engulf the food as soon as it hit the water. He also would eat large quantities at each feeding, more so than what I would have expected from a fish this size. However, that would soon change.

After about six months of being a very enjoyable fish, my rhom went through a period where he changed dramatically. He became very inactive, and would also refuse eating about three out of four feedings. The water parameters were the same and the diet was the same, but he just didn't want anything, no matter what I offered him. When he finally would eat (which at the beginning was about every two to three weeks), he would eat very little. In fact it averaged about 1/3 of what he used to eat per meal, and afterwards he would again refuse his food for another two to three weeks. At first, having owned quite a few large rhoms in the past and knowing that this was not uncommon for these fish, I was not too concerned. However, after this went on for about four months, I began to be concerned about the fish's health.

About a eight weeks ago, after no change in water parameters or diet, my rhom decided that it was time to start packing it on again. He began eating like crazy, and also is now extremely active in his tank. He again greets me whenever I walk in the room, hoping that it is feeding time. He has increased the amount that he eats like in the beginning, and for all practical purposes seems to be the same as he was when I first got him. I am no longer at all concerned that his health was ever in danger, and have come to the conclusion that this seems to be a normal behavior pattern for some large rhoms.

The reason I am posting this is because I have seen a lot of new rhom owners get very stressed over their fish not eating. I don't think we realize just how long a healthy fish can go without eating, providing that he is not malnutritioned before he decides to start his fasting period. I also believe that this behavior could be universal for many other piranha species as well, since a similar thing happened with Wayne's large manuelli. And I have seen it happen with large solitary kept pygos, but do not think it is common for pygos that are kept in a shoal.

In short, I hope this information can be an source of encouragement for individuals who may be concerned about a finicky piranha.
 

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That's a nice piece of info, John (good to see you again, btw.
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Probably answering a lot of questions that may have been troubling others, or comforting them that their picky fish probably is all right.

btw: any chance that that "vasting period" coincides with the dry season in S. America?
 

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The ASSMAN
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I wonder if this has to do with the different seasons and because he is a recently wild caught fish....was he preparing for the dry season by packing on some extra weight, and when that season is over he is content about the abundance of food....hence the non-interest....just a thought.
 

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my sister is #1 best prostitute
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i recently got a 7.5 inch RHOM, he was eating when i picked him up from georges, very agresively eating, but he had a big chin bump removed and moved to my tank so i expected a period of shock and adjustment.. well its been a month and he hasnt been eating at all..

can anyone suggest some enticing treats to try to get him eating? or how to present the food. should i try silver sides on a string so i can move it around the tank or will he find it if i just let it sit on the bottom of the tank?

i think when he gets hungry enough he will eat what ever is presented but maybe there is something i havent tried yet..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes, I thought about the possibilities of seasonal feeding patterns too. I guess it would make sense, but who can really tell for sure if that is what it is. Since it doesn't seem to be temperature or water perimeter related, that guess is as good as any.

Nismo, if it were my rhom, I wouldn't worry about enticing him to eat. As long as he doesn't look emancipated, just offer him some catfish fillets (the one food I have found that all of my piranhas will readily eat) every couple of evenings and if he doesn't eat it before morning than take it out.
 

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DOC#003162
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grosse gurke said:
I wonder if this has to do with the different seasons and because he is a recently wild caught fish....was he preparing for the dry season by packing on some extra weight, and when that season is over he is content about the abundance of food....hence the non-interest....just a thought.
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that was my first thought to this
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
mr.freez said:
:laugh: were not used to seein knifeman around
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Ouch, I think I've just been slammed!


Seriously, I do wish I was around to post more. I miss the fish stuff, but for now I am buried deeply in breeding rottweilers, which I have done since 1981. Anyone get bored and want to check out some of my new and past dogs, click HERE
 
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