Tips and Tricks
When adding Discus to an aquarium - open the bag, add some of your tank water, wait ten minutes, net the fish and introduce it. Traditional floating of the bag is a poor idea with Discus as they flop over causing the fish to panic. Keep the aquarium lights on. The reason is simple, if you were in a dark box, frightened and then suddenly released, no doubt you would like to see what you are about to bang into...think about it.
When buying Discus, insist on the fish being bagged individually if over 10cm and oxygen added. If not available, then buy elsewhere. Never open the box and take a peep on the way home. Correctly packed Discus are ok for 48 hours. Large Discus will often lay on their sides in the bag, and also when first put in tank. Do not panic. Gently encourage the fish to swim. This can take a while. In extreme cases add an extra air stone to ensure plenty of water movement.
Newly introduced fish, big and small can be very nervous for a day or many weeks, there is no set period. Be patient, when the fish are content they will settle. Often newly purchased Adult Discus will not eat for along time, sometimes for several weeks. Be patient, offer food twice daily - trust me on this when they are ready, they will eat as if they had never stopped.
At night with the tank lights off, Discus will often lean over towards the room light - this is most disconcerting the first time you see it. Avoid startling the fish by turning the lights on. Fitting a small moon light is a good idea.
Plain mutations, and white Discus will turn orange or red if fed too much Brine shrimp and processed foods!
If two Discus are put together to spawn and the eggs end up on the glass and not the cone, there is a very good chance that both fish are females.
Always feed fry freshly hatch Brine shrimp - day old shrimp may of developed a shell that could choke Discus Fry.
Position heaterstates horizontally to achieve an even temperature
If you use a sump, draw the water from the tank to the sump from the bottom of the tank. The water here is at its coolest and will have a lower even if very minimal oxygen content.
In the extremes of summer, aquarium water will often get warmer than is ideal for the species kept in it. It is a good idea to add additional aeration to keep oxygen levels high.
Feeding - little and often remains the best way to feed Discus.
Medications - keep locked away unless 100% sure they are needed.
Water - Keep the water tip top and the fish will look after themselves.
Discus - Look long and hard at all available before deciding what you want. Avoid where ever possible mixing fish from differing sources.
Correct Equipment - provide it all before purchasing the fish. You will be amazed at the number of fish keepers who buy the fish, then the equipment, usually they then have to buy the fish again too.
Never allow maintenance to become a chore, if you do you will lose interest and your Discus will suffer.
Use small pumps and siphons to shift water to drain and to refill the aquarium, especially if its in the living room on the new carpet!
Fish competent vets are not difficult to locate and their input is valuable. Try to get a phone number and keep it safe.