Are Discus fish for me? You must inquire yourself this question more so than for any other form of fish generally found in aquaria. Discus have a recognition as being fussy eaters, prone to disease and hard to keep. This is both true and fake. Discus might be fussy: for example if you feed them frozen blood worms as their only food, they may accept this for at one time, then refuse to consume it. This might be avoided by multiplicity in feeding.
Prone to disease?
Yes, if you never clean your tanks, do not do sufficient water changes and usually neglect your fish, they will get sick. On the other hand I have fish that have never been sick even a day in their entire lives.
Difficult to keep?
Yes, more complicated than, mention, a Convict Cichlid (Archocentrus nigrofasciatum), but well within most fishkeepers’ capability, provided certain criteria are met.
Are Discus fish for me?
Well, if your life is so full of activity that you wouldn’t have time to do fifteen minutes of maintenance day after day and an hour or so every week, also plus time to feeding the fish, then the answer should be NOPE!. If you have time to invest and you are keen to succeed in keeping Discus, then the answer should be YES!, and you will have numerous pleasurable experiences in store.
Keeping or breeding
Assuming your respond to the preceding question was YES!, then what is your aim? Keeping Discus in a display tank or breeding? This question does not need a certain answer like the preceding question, but it is worth asking anyway. For me the answer was breeding and it was not until I had bred Discus and raised their fry to adults that I undoubtedly kept Discus in a planted display tank. If keeping a display tank is your ambition, then your job is a small easier, but no less pleasurable. If you need to breed them, you must think of numerous factors, such as placement of your tanks, storing and conditioning water etc., and one notably important advantage that you will require is… patience.
When buying Discus, whether from a shop or a private fishkeeper, it is critical to be cautious and selective. Purchase the amount of fish, type and size that suit your needs. My philosophy has systematically been that it fees just as much to feed and house bad fish as it does to keep good quality fish. By this I do not mean that you should keep Turquoise Discus and not keep Brown Discus. I am saying you should strive to keep nicely shaped, large and good quality fish, be they Browns, Cobalts, Turquoise or anything. This is where shopping around and being selective is notably important.
Size, quality and colour all relate to cost. principally, you get what you buy, or do you? When purchasing small fish you must trust the seller. This is where being cautious comes in. a couple of shops may misrepresent what they are offering, though this is infrequent. More generally they could not know what they are offering. Even with these difficulties this is yet the most recommended way to buy Discus.
So how numerous Discus should I buy? This relies on what your ambition is. If you wish your fish for display purposes, then the number relies on how trmendous your tank is. If you are going to establish a 5′ x 2′ x 2′ tank with good filtration, you can house 8 to 10 adult Discus, some less if you are going to have catfish and tetras likewise. The size of the fish you will pay for will decide the amount of fish you require. If you can afford adults, then pay for your 8 to 10 fish, but pay for them some at a time, in order to not overload the tank. And quarantine all new arrivals before placing them in with the existing fish. If, like different of as, you cannot afford to pay for adult fish, then you can principally buy fish as babies or as juveniles. Babies (the body around the size of a 50 cent piece), are the cheapest alternative to buy your fish.
At this size they do not show much colour and just look like Brown Discus, even though they are if truth be told Turquoise Discus. do not worry if babies colour up notably late, as a couple of varieties do not colour until they are twelve months of age or later. If purchasing small fish, pay for more than you require or wish as adults. do not expect to get 8 to 10 adults from the same number of babies. My experience has shown, that out of the 10 babies you resolved to grow up to adults, one will die, one or two is not going to grow notably well, and two just don’t come to the grade. These findings are based on my strict feeding program and my fussy choosing of display fish. If your ambition is different, then adjust your number of fish accordingly.
If you pay for juvenile fish (tennis ball diameter size) they are half grown and a couple of of the stressing work has previously been done for you. You have the virtue that by this age (around 6 months) they should be showing a couple of adult colouration. for you to get an idea of what they may seem like when they are fully grown. The disadvantage is that you will buy the additional size possibly one third to half the price of an adult rather than one eighth of the price as a baby.
If you intend to breed Discus, it is absolute to pay for young fish and grow them up. enable 6 to 7 fish to get one pair and 8 to ten fish to get two pairs as it is better to have too numerous fish than not sufficient, specifically when you invest 12 to 18 months raising them. And do not sell your “spare” fish until the pairs have proved themselves by raising fry.