An introduction to Discus: Part I

Jul 22, 2006
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#28
FishBoy, you make it seem like taking care of any Discus fishies would be a major engery drain on all of us. Every day water change? Are you serious?! Could they be happy with weekly change with excessive filters? Lets just say that I get one of Emperor 400, will that be enough for weekly water change? How about two of Emperor 400, will that be enough for weekly water change or every two weeks? How about I add the UGF with thin gravels? Seriously, a bare tank is ugly. If they must have a bare tank, can they accept under 2 inch of gravel? What kinda gravel? Do they need real plants or will accept fake plants? Do they prefer driftwoods or rocks or just plants? Are you saying to have two heaters working at once, settings to be at 85? If the temperature is going to be that high, then UGF is a must to increase oxygen in the water. You say that it is best to get an adult Discus. How do I know which is an adult? How fast do they grow to become an adult? Most importantly, do they attack humans? Do they have teeth?

Thunder
 

Luca

Large Fish
Jun 9, 2003
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#29
Hi Thunder lol no they won't bite you, they're not as territorial as some other bigger cichlids.

It's a good idea to have two heaters, but not necessary, personally I don't do it and haven't had any problems *touchwood*.

Discus reach adult hood at 18 months, they continue to colour up until then which is awesome, so fun to grow them out from young, which means yes a barebottom (BB) tank and daily, twice daily, every second day water changes, the more the better. You don't "have" to, but they grow much better and don't get stunted if you do. A stunted discus is one with a big eye, it's out of proportion and doesn't look as good as one with a small eye. Overfiltration isn't as good as daily water changes, because filters alone do not remove nitrate. Nitrate (basically fish waste) is believed to be growth inhibiting (hence the need for daily water changes to remove nitrate).

Real plants are best because they help remove bad toxins from the water, like ammonia and nitrate. Discus prefer more driftwood than rocks or plants, because this resembles their natural habitat more realistically. The odd rock is found in the wild however.

A BB tank doesn't look as nice as a planted, but I have found the best of both worlds by weighing some normal plants down in a BB tank. It's easy to clean AND looks great. I will post some pics when I get my camera arriving soon to show you what I mean.

HTH :)
 

Luca

Large Fish
Jun 9, 2003
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#31
Hi Thunder, UGF isn't recommended for planted tanks because the roots get caught up in it (trust me I know from experience!). I recommend a HOB (hang on the back) filter. Cut a hole in a sponge and slip it over the intake, this is a prefilter, very easy to slip off and rinse, keeps the water conditions top notches, especially when combined with daily water changes.

If you want you can do weekly water changes, have gravel, and have cories. It's up to you, but you won't get huge show quality discus. They'll still be happy. I'm not familiar with raphaels sorry someone else might be able to help. Cories are great at cleaning up. In the wild discus do live with other fish, so this is natural too.

Cheers
 

Jul 22, 2006
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#32
Luca, I did a post about Striped Raphaels. I love having them. I currently have 2 and they are growing. Yeah, no UGF for the Discus. I will use the HOB Emperor 400 and possibly a canister too. When I put the sponge in the intake tube, how much far down should i insert it? How often should I clean it or replace it? I wonder if the filter will suck up the sponge to the rotating parts.

I'm not setting anything up now. I am learning first, before I start anything. It will take me a while to get it all set up, unless I choose to temporary work the full time hours at HellMart.

Luca, do you know Bill? lmao

Thunder
 

Pure

Elite Fish
Nov 1, 2005
3,216
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Jacksonville, FL
#33
Striped Raphaels actually look to be a good tank mate for discus. So are zebra plecos.

IMHO I wouldn't put a prefilter sponge on the HOB. It will prevent the HOB from pulling most of the gunk from the tank into the filter. And IME it's next to impossible to remove these without having a cloud of crap knocked loose into your water. It's much easier to allow the filter to do it's job and pull the detritus into the filter. The filter can then be turned off for cleanings helping to keep the waste out of your water.

No the filter won't suck up the sponge. They are normally made out of plastic and rarely fall apart.
 

Mar 15, 2007
15
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Guilderland, New York
#38
A monster is born

I made the mistake of showing my wife a discus and she immediatly decided that we needed it for "our" tank. Now when i go to my LFS she immediatly looks for the discus. The first one she purchased is about 4" and is basically orange with electric blue markings on the body which come and go depending on the orientation of the fish and very light vertical lines. The new one is about 2 1/2 inches and can't seem to decide if it wants to be blue, green or grey. It is supposed to be an ocean green variant. The currently reside in a 95 gallon wave tank with moderate planting and a host of other denisons. I have a distinct feeiling that I am going to have to bring the 55 inside and set that up as a discus habitat. Oh yeah I'm hooked!:rolleyes:
 

Jul 9, 2003
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Columbia, SC
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#39
I made the mistake of showing my wife a discus and she immediatly decided that we needed it for "our" tank. Now when i go to my LFS she immediatly looks for the discus. The first one she purchased is about 4" and is basically orange with electric blue markings on the body which come and go depending on the orientation of the fish and very light vertical lines. The new one is about 2 1/2 inches and can't seem to decide if it wants to be blue, green or grey. It is supposed to be an ocean green variant. The currently reside in a 95 gallon wave tank with moderate planting and a host of other denisons. I have a distinct feeiling that I am going to have to bring the 55 inside and set that up as a discus habitat. Oh yeah I'm hooked!:rolleyes:
Haha nice, thats how it goes. I finally broke the discus addiction....well the cost broke me. ;) But i hope to return to keeping them day later on in my life.
 

shorty

Medium Fish
Mar 18, 2003
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#40
i have three discus. can anyone tell me why one of them is so timid and just hides away in the corner all day every day when the others, even the newest bought one is perfectly happy to be swimming around the tank. Would you suggest getting anothr one perhaps?