Discus Escapades, Trials, and Tribulations

Slug
  • #1
First off for those that don't know, i'm Slug...or Matt, and I am currently working exclusively with discus. My main goal is to not only provide myself with another notch on the cane of breeding cichlids but to also experience the rewarding and challenging world of breeding discus. Discus are a fish that have a very unique breeding style, or fry raising style I should say. They carry their fry on their bodies letting them feed off the parent slime coat on the skin. This is what I am most looking forward to seeing in person. My ultimate goal is to be able to provide people with the confidence and knowledge to keep discus, and to show its not as hard as books make it out to be. At the same time I will strive to produce the highest quality home grown USA bred discus possible. Not for profit, but to strengthen this corner of the hobby.

With that being said my setup goes as follows currently:
  • 55gal - Growout/pairing tank
  • 40Br - Growout/pairing tank
  • 30gal - Growout/pairing tank
  • 20gal - Breeding tank
  • 20gal - Breeding tank
  • 20gal - Breeding tank

I have 16 discus currently with a proven pair lined up and should arrive the 4th of Oct bringing my total to 18 Discus. All are Adults or Sub-adults. All of my fish and breeding stock come from Germany and Malaysia. Here is a list of strains I currently have:

  • Cobalt
  • Blue Diamond
  • Brilliant Turquoise
  • Penang Eruption
  • White Butterfly "throwback"
  • Alenquer
  • Marlboro Red

The proven pair is a Gold Melon female and Rose Red Intermediate male.

The purpose of this thread is to give an overview of the operation, pairings, and breedings going on. I will make separate threads for each pair I get and update their individual progress there. Now, if only the fish would cooperate and pair up.
 
Shawnie
  • #2
matt, I'm so glad you are a member here...I know ive said it before, but my appologies again for jumping you that day on your discus pics of bare tanks etc...but I want you to know I so appreciate you sharing all your knowledge and taking the time to type it all out for us to have...from your pic taking skills to every bit of advice you give us all...
 
Dino
  • #3
Looking forward to watching this project progress.
 
mrsmuffin
  • #4
I am very interested to learn from your experiences. I remember how proud my brother was of his discus tanks when we were teenagers, but I have thought it was too hard for me. Maybe seeing how you do it will give me the confidence to do it myself!
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
Thanks all.

I guess I'll kick things off with a growth picture of my Alenquer. One of my favorites in the tank.
BEFORE (When I first got it)

543.jpg

245.jpg

AFTER (Now)

246.jpg

247.jpg
 
Christian Patti
  • #6
You have awesome discus. Their one of the fish I would really like to keep someday. Just quick question though. I have heard barebottom tanks are better for discus because their growth isn't stunted and its easier to keep clean but I thought discus like a lot of hiding spots. Thanks

And I can't wait to see more pics.
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
I go by the thought that if you give the fish a place to hide, it will. I take away all hiding spots and they just get used to things going on around them. Discus are naturally shy and skiddish, but why play into that? That's like giving a person with lung cancer a cigarette. You just feed the behavior.

Also I find that a lot of unhealthy fish will hide constantly. A healthy discus should actually rush to the glass or top when you walk up thinking you are going to feed them. If you saw it in person you would know the difference, its like night and day.

In the wild discus live amongst submerged roots and branches, this is where their natural instinct to hide comes from. They try to isolate themselves from everything else like predators by getting into places nothing can see them. A tank raised discus should be out in the open.

Just my philosophy though, others might disagree.
 
Christian Patti
  • #8
Thanks for he explanation, even if they disagree it still works good for you and others. I was thinking about doing a discus tank someday with a bare bottom and just a few potted plants
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
I will say this though. If the fish comes from a non bare tank, or is just generally stressed from shipping it might take them a little bit to get used to your bare tank. Some fish have trouble picking food off the bottom of a bare tank (that's why I like to paint the bottom of my tank or put something under it), and some just won't be used to your lighting since its different in every tank. You should be able to acclimate them to your tank just fine, but it might not look right at first.
 
Allie
  • #10
Love the discus Matt. We are getting into them as soon as we get some more big tanks for our breeding projects.
Which types do you recommend? I love the blue diamond, cobalts but have heard they are more aggressive than others. Is this true?
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
Thanks Allie. I have not heard of or seen them being more aggressive then others. The blues generally seem to take a bit longer to mature then the others, they'll grow just fine but won't start breeding before the others (usually), though. Most strains will do well for you, its mostly just a matter of taste in color/pattern.

Some blues in a planted tank would look great.
 
Allie
  • #12
Thanks Allie. I have not heard of or seen them being more aggressive then others. The blues generally seem to take a bit longer to mature then the others, they'll grow just fine but won't start breeding before the others (usually), though. Most strains will do well for you, its mostly just a matter of taste in color/pattern.

Some blues in a planted tank would look great.
Thanks. I really like the wild looking ones. I have the book Exotic Discus of the World. There is a strain in there I love, wild royal blue discus. They are amazing!!
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Yes wilds look great. I'm looking forward to owning some, some day.

I am about to get a proven pair where the Male is very wild type looking. Almost like a type of wild blue. Supposedly the pair will throw 50% of the female color and 50% of the male color. I'm sure Eric won't mind if I use his photos to show you, this is the pair he is selling me. Small pictures but best I can do hehe.

Male not in breeding dress

293.jpg
Male in breeding dress, on left. Female on right.

294.jpg
Female on left:

295.jpg
Both

296.jpg

I will have this pair October 4th, at least that's the plan right now. They just spawned again in his tank yesterday, so I hope I can catch some of that luck with this pair.
 
Allie
  • #14
NICE!!! They are awesome!!! So orange! Lucky you.
He almost looks like the one in the book...which has the blue hue.
 
MissMTS
  • #15
Beautiful discus. I can't wait to hear about all of your progress with the breeding. I really admire people who dedicate themselves to one type of fish, and become experts on that breed. I feel like I am too ADD and I change my mind too often to have the kind of dedication
 
Allie
  • #16
Beautiful discus. I can't wait to hear about all of your progress with the breeding. I really admire people who dedicate themselves to one type of fish, and become experts on that breed. I feel like I am too ADD and I change my mind too often to have the kind of dedication
My bf is like that with the 120g. He chooses once species of fish to learn about. Where I am the one with 9 tanks lol. ops:
We have kept MalawI cichlids the longest but I am interested in seeing how all species are in person.
 
MissMTS
  • #17
That's how I feel too. Any time I see a new fish at the LFS or even pictures of a different set up that I like on the internet, I always want to have it in my house Too bad I don't live in a mansion where I could have as many tanks as I wanted, lol
 
Allie
  • #18
That's how I feel too. Any time I see a new fish at the LFS or even pictures of a different set up that I like on the internet, I always want to have it in my house Too bad I don't live in a mansion where I could have as many tanks as I wanted, lol
My little fish room is getting shelves for more tanks for betta. I am focusing on just betta or trying to right now.
I want huge finished basement when we get a house. Dedicated to fish tanks...oh and a laundry room.
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
Don't want to be the bad guy but this topic is for the discus.
 
MissMTS
  • #20
Ooops! Sorry
 
Allie
  • #21
Hey Matt check out AB
 
Jess
  • #22
HI Matt, very interesting how the male colors up, "breeding dress" as you said. I'll be watching to see how things progress.
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #23
Hey Matt check out AB

Nice wilds. I only wish I had room for a large planted tank. I'm a sucker for the Wild Greens mostly though, Tefe type.

It is pretty cool Jess. Its so the fry have something to go to in the tank. The darkness attracts the fry in a lighter tank so that they know where the parents are and can attach to their slime coat easy.
 
Jess
  • #24
Does that mean the dad does most of the care or feeding? They do eventually find mom too don't they?
 
Martinismommy
  • #25
I LOVE these fish! They are absolutely gorgeous and you should be very proud of each and everyone of them...
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #26
Both care for the young, the male is just of a strain that shows changes in color. A lot of domestic strains these days are bred to show their color all the time, even during periods of stress or breeding.
 
Jess
  • #27
In a way that's too bad. When the color is off on my fish I know something is up for sure.
 
Slug
  • Thread Starter
  • #28
I agree. However, thankfully there are other behaviors, at least with discus that can be signs.

For the most part it seems to be just the red strains that have this constant color.
 
Jess
  • #29
That makes sense from what I've observed.
 

Similar Aquarium Threads

  • Locked
Replies
15
Views
926
86 ssinit
  • Locked
Replies
14
Views
5K
Lucyn
  • Locked
Replies
8
Views
1K
joshua 74
Replies
21
Views
2K
Nart
  • Question
Replies
8
Views
718
Dkapp
Top Bottom