Jul

12

Hey folks,

Good news, the bleach method worked! And within 12 hours actually! So for anybody that wants to get rid of or remove that stupid stain color in their aquarium silicone due to using fish medicine like ick clear, quick cure, etc. then do what I did. It took nearly 90% of the color out of the silicone in the fish tank and you can hardly (if at all) tell it was ever stained in the first place.

Removing Stain from Aquarium Silicone Instructions:

1. Empty the tank out, and rinse it out. Replace any air tubing that might have got stained too.

2. Pour 2.5 cups (depending on size of tank, mine was a 29 gallon, adjust to close ratio of your tank size) of regular bleach into the tank. Then fill it up with water all the way to the top.

3. Let it sit over night.

4. Should be all clear now. Empty the tank out and rinse it all out.

5. Make sure you let it dry out for a couple days so the bleach can break down and not be toxic to your fish when you re-use the tank.

Voila, you’re all done. Did it help you out as it did me? I want to know, feel free to comment.

Sincerely,
James F.

Jul

2

Hey all,

Unfortunately, no eggs this morning so I didn’t beat any records. Besides that, someone told me on SimplyDiscus that Hans shipped some out and they were breeding in the bags during shipping. So yeah, no record for me!

However, they are still going at it strong, showing signs of breeding.. I gave them their first 50% water change today. Water slightly cooler, should give the overall tank a 2-3*F drop, may trigger something.

Will keep you posted.

Sincerely,
James F.

Jul

1

Discus Arrives in Mail

After a 38 total hour shipping time, all my worries about them being dead on arrival vanished when I eagerly opened up the box this morning! Yes. Both of them are alive and kicking. One was somewhat dazed from the trip (I could tell when I opened up his bag) but she is settling in nice now. [It's now about 7 hours since, they approach me when I sit in front of the tank, and have ate some food. The female is already sizing up the cone and taking long looks at it. Both of their tubes are down!]

Checking Bagged Discus Fish

The colors, beautiful red spots, and quality of fish are amazing! They have a very nice patterning and the colors will definitely brighten up as they get settled in and their stress bars go away.

Here are some pictures (these were when I first put them in the tank):

Discus First Time in TankDiscus Start Settling InDiscus Exploring The Aquarium For First Time

Here are some pictures of the fish after a couple hours (light is on, but colors not showing good yet until they total settle in):

Leopard Discus FishLeopard Breeding Pair ExploringDiscus Fish Exploring New HomeSome More Exploring DiscusSide by Side

Hope you enjoyed the pictures. I’ll keep everyone updated on breeding progress, hopefully on a daily basis (if not close).
I can send you an email every time I updated, just subscribe by sending your email address on the right.

Sincerely,
James F.

Jun

30

Discus Breeding Tank Setup

After a few hours of looking around from here and there, I finally came across a good deal on a 29 gallon. I bought it off a guy from Craigslist for $40! But it wasn’t just the tank; it was the hood with light, and (extra bonus) one side was already painted with a nice light blue. Perfect!

Anyways, so here’s the breakdown on what you need for setting up a breeding tank for discus fish:

WATER: (most important!)
I know it sounds really rookie, but make sure your tank is cycled. Meaning you have enough bacteria that can turn your ammonia into nitrates, more info here: http://www.firsttankguide.net/cycle.php. With this tank here; I took filter pads out of a running, established 55 gallon and squeezed it by where the sponge filter is running. I also used about 15 gallons of water from that 55 gallon tank as well. Added in some prime, and now I am ready for some discus fish to prance around in there.

aquarium-discus-heater

HEATER:
Honestly, I use a heater that I bought from Wal-Mart. I think it’s made by Tetra? It’s a submersible 200 watt. I have to stay on a budget with my hobby so I can’t always afford those $100 high-end heaters. However, I can say that I’ve owed a lot of these heaters and they have all worked fine for 5 years+; except one. But the great thing about Wal-Mart is; you can take it back! No hassles. Which is a good peace of mind to have.

TEMPERATURE:
I like to keep my discus fish at around 82*F for my breeders. For young grow outs; I would go higher maybe 85*F. I want the water to be warm enough for my discus fish to feel comfortable, but cool enough so bacteria/fungus/parasites don’t grow as fast since there will be eggs and young. I keep my water changing barrel at about 78*F, so when I do water changes, it drops the temperature of the tank down to about 80*F which helps trigger breeding.

PH and GH:
To be honest, my pH out the tap is 7.7 to 7.8, but I’ve kept and bred discus for years in that water. As long as you keep it STABLE, and GH is soft enough (for male’s sperm to be able penetrate the eggs) you should have no problems. I haven’t had any with mine. I, however, am lucky I get soft water out the tap at around 85GH.  It’s weird, cause pH and GH are normally associated if one is up, the other is too. Some may say to lower the pH too or the eggs won’t fertilize, but I have had luck at this pH with previous pairs. I can tell you that if you have really hard water, you may want to mix it with RO (reverse osmosis) and etc. to soften it up a bit or the egg wall’s will be too hard to accept any sperm from the male during fertilization. So you’ll have a bunch of white eggs, you can learn more about softening water here: http://www.aquariumadvice.com/forums/f12/how-do-i-lower-hardness-gh-114391.html

Discus Tank Sponge Filter

FILTER:
I use a sponge filter. Not sure what size or type, I don’t even remember how I got it honestly. Lol. However, a sponge filter is huge with area for holding bio media, and it provides good aeration for the tank. It’s also gentle and low flow enough to not disrupt the breeding pair and fry. It’s powered by an air pump from Wal-Mart; not sure of the company as I don’t have access to the package, but it’s shaped like a UFO. It’s pretty good in my opinion. Plus if it ever breaks, etc.; I’ll just take it back!

and at last, but not least..

Discus Breeding Cone

BREEDING CONE:
I got this a few years back from another local breeder. It’s made of clay from someone who was making these especially for discus. It is about 10-12″ high and has a little tray type lip around the bottom for when eggs or fry may fall. It will just collect there, and the parents can just pick them up; no worrying about the fry or eggs getting stuck underneath.

That’s all I can think of for right now; but that about summarizes for the most part my new tank that I just set up. If you can think of more, or any questions, shoot me an email: james@discusfishy.com

Hope this article helped!

Sincerely,
James F.

Jun

30

Seems like a fairly easy question to answer: most seasoned vets (even I) suggest and use the standard 29 gallon (30″ x 12″ x 18″). However, the 20 gallon highs (24″ x 12″ x 16″) will work fine as well. But let’s take a further look into why the 29 gallon is deemed the best:

HEIGHT vs. WIDTH vs. DEPTH:
In my experience, the tank needs to be at least 24″ wide and 12″ deep so it gives the discus pair some room to swim around and engage each other. However, I also found that any tank not being tall enough will not motivate discus to spawn. If your breeding cone is almost coming out the water or you only have about 3-4″ clearance from the cone’s tip to the water surface; many times the discus will not breed.

I could never get mine to breed in a 20 gallon long (30″ x 12″ x 12″), but as soon as I got them into a 20 gallon tall, they would start laying eggs like crazy. So my suggestion is have a minimum of 16″ in height.

So the tank dimensions of (24″ x 12″ x 16″) (20 gallon high) will work as an absolute minimum footage size for discus fish breeding pairs.

FOR FRY:
With anything bigger than a 29 gallon, your fry are going to work harder to find the parents once they go into free swimming stage. They need to attach and stay with the parents for the slim coat within 24-36 hours; it is pretty crucial this happens.

With anything smaller than a 29 gallon, your fry won’t have much room to grow. Of course, if you artificially raise the eggs, you can get away with this. But for the most part, if you let the parents raise the fry for the first month, then the fry will get about dime size before they need to move into their own grow out tank. Imagine 50+ fry plus the parents swimming around for a month in a 20 gallon aquarium. That extra 9-10 gallons will make a difference.

Hope that helps and good luck!

Seasoned vet breeders, what do you think? Do you agree or disagree?

Sincerely,
James F.

Jun

29

Yup,

I will be getting back into the discus hobby. I kept them for awhile for about 4 years, and then tried to keep them throughout college, but could never keep them for more than a year at a time because of busy schedules. But now I have graduated, and have a more stable lifestyle and more time on my hands to get back into keeping discus!

It also helps that I have a little bit more money than I did in high school too to help support my discus fish hobby. My goal is to have a breeding pair give me a nice set for a 55 gallon planted tank, and the other spawns will be sold to support my future addiction.

It seems people jump in, and jump out of the hobby in 3-4 year spurts.

DOES THIS APPLY TO YOU TOO?

WHAT SPARKS YOUR INTEREST TO GET BACK INTO THE HOBBY?


Sincerely,
James F.

Jun

29

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Sincerely,
James F.