Discus fish are tropical creatures that come from the family Cichlidae. They are South American in origin, but are much loved additions to aquariums all over the planet. In nature these schooling fish are usually seen within streams, rivers and lakes. Discus fish are, for the most part, relaxed and calm tank residents.
About Discus Fish
Although discus fish are mostly pleasant in temperament, it is important for them to live within species tanks, and not in the company of other kinds of fish. They need elevated H20 temperatures in comparison to other fish -- think between 82 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Warm water is an absolute must for them, no two ways about it. Despite that, they can live successfully with other fish that, just like them, appreciate heat -- think clown loaches, as an example.
Feeding in Nature
Discus fish in wild environments consume many different types of sustenance. Blue discus fish (Symphysodon aequifasciatus), for example, dine on lots of bugs and bug larvae. Red or Heckel discus fish (Symphysodon discus), on the other hand, consume lots of plants, crustaceans and worms. They also eat insects frequently, just as with their blue counterparts.
Diet in Aquariums
In aquariums, discus fish eat lots of meaty meals, such as bloodworms, earthworms, brine shrimp, white worms and mosquito larvae. They also feed on cyanobacteria such as spirulina, which helps intensify their coloration. Discus fish generally consume flakes handily, but never make them the focus of their feeding plans. They also eat pellets.
In most cases, discus fish are rather easy to feed. They can occasionally be more demanding, however, but usually only if they're experiencing frustration of some sort. Never offer discus fish food in excess. Only offer them what you think they can realistically take in within several minutes. Although discus fish initially approach their food voraciously, this enthusiasm cools down quickly and they start casually munching, instead. Since discus fish are nowhere near aggressive about food, it isn't a good idea to put them in the same aquarium with other fish that are. This could result in discus fish failing to eat and suffering the consequences through malnourishment.
- Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images