The Latin name of the discus fish is Symphysodon fasciitis and it belongs to the cichlid family (Cichlidae). This fish makes high demands on its living situation, it is therefore not a suitable beginner fish.
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- Origin: Amazon region
- Length: 20 centimeters
- Age: 14 years
- Sex recognition: difficult, but in the mating season the male can be recognized by the more pointed genital papilla.
The discus fish needs a larger aquarium, from at least 120 centimeters. Its height should be at least 50 centimeters because it is a large fish. Because he has quite a few requirements, this fish, which is not suitable for beginners, is usually kept in a special aquarium. He likes a soft (sandy) bottom and he likes to have enough swimming space.
Make sure the aquarium is in a quiet place, as they are quite sensitive to stress. There should not be too much current in the water, which is provided with rhizomes, large-leaved plants, and floating greenery. The discus fish is usually in the middle water layer.
The discus fish is a peaceful fish. He feels good in a group, but he is not a schooling fish. Pairs may be formed in the group, which will then remain together for the rest of their lives. Because this calm fish prefers not to be disturbed too much, it is a good idea not to keep other fish with it. If you still want to do this, it is best to keep neon and cardinal tetras. Remember that they get together at a very young age, so that the discus gets used to this company, otherwise, it will eat them later. Angelfish can also be placed with discus fish.
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The discus fish is a very sensitive fish, which places high demands on the water composition. It needs heat, so there must be a minimum temperature of 27 degrees Celsius. A higher temperature (29-30 degrees) is even better. The pH value is between 5 and 7 and the water should be as soft as possible (not harder than 4). Peat is filtered and because they are sensitive to contamination of the water, it must be changed regularly.
The discus fish is a picky eater. They sometimes accept dry food, but that should not count as a complete menu. They must be fed very varied to prevent diseases. They prefer to eat live food such as brine shrimp, mosquito larvae, and tubifex. It’s not a bad idea to freeze this first so it’s free of parasites.
If you keep a group of discus fish, pairs can form. However, this may not happen, as they are quite picky about choosing a mate. When there is a pair, the female will lay hundreds of eggs on rocks and plants in good conditions. These eggs are guarded by both parents until they hatch. When the young are there, they live close to their parents for the first time, because they have to eat the skin secretion of their mucus layer. So the parents are absolutely necessary to raise the young. Only after a longer period of time will they start eating independently.