I have a 75 gallon tank with a 30 gallon sump. i attempted to do african cichlids in the tank but my rocks are making this a problem. i plan on taking the tank down and getting rid of the rock. i have done many planted tanks before so i figure ill step up my fish experience level. i have done research but everything i find says to have a PH from 6.4ish-8.4? i though they liked it higher like the africans did. also how many discus could i fit in a tank this size? i have also read on some sites that they do not like tank mates(tetra, cat fish, hatchet fish)? i have s bristle nose that i paid a decent amount of money for for my african tank, would i be able to keep him around or will he eat my plants?
Discus are a very difficult fish to keep, as they are more picky about water parameters than most. I'm not sure where you were looking for information on them, but they are South American Cichlids, and not African. Therefore, they need soft, acidic water.
Ideal water for them is actually extremely soft water (under 2 dGH), with very low pH (in the 5's). They can do okay in a little harder, more basic (but still acidic) water if, and only if, they were bred that way. A 75 gallon tank would be the minimum, and you need at least 5 Discus. They can be kept with other fish, but you have to be careful on which ones. Discus are slow and sedate, so you need other fish like that and none can be fin nippers. I would read the profile of them here, just click on the shaded name.
Bristlenose Pleco are fine with plants, but they require driftwood.
If the fish are tank raised as opposed to wild caught, then they could adapt more easily to your tapwater assuming it isn't rock hard.
The warm temps that Discus need is not suited for very many fishes but there are a few, that could work with these fishes.
Ok thank you for that insight. I don't know why I thought they needed a high PH, I just knew they were picky with water quality. As for the bristlenose, I don't think I want to keep him in that tank. Would otto cats be able to surivive the warmer temps? I've had much luck with them before and love them as algae eaters
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Otocinclus prefer water temps not much higher than 78 degrees F, Ditto for Bristlenose.
I once had a not so nice discussion on a forum dedictaed to Discus, when I mentioned that I found it odd that folks who place such high esteem on Discus and proper care,,,,seemed not to mind that many of the other fishes they kept with them were accustomed to much cooler water.:roll:
they must be hardcore and the discus are the main priority in their tank.it makes sense though discus can be very very expensive and hard to keep for beginners but not that hard once you know the basic.
although one should not put one creature above another it does happen.people give priority to the things they like.it's human nature.
I am curios to know why you have issue with Rocks for the Africans, it is their natural habitat. I have over 300lb's of rocks in my tanks.
Discus are best suited to a well established tank and not ideal fish for a new tank, they are very intolerant of bad water parameters.
the rocks i was using were not smooth rocks. they had a lot of holes in them. i had the same issue in the african tank as i had with my saltwater with the same rocks. high ammonia, high nitrite and high nitrate. i came to the conclusion that because the rocks had alot of holes and gaps that there was so much ditritus inside the rocks that it was killing my water quality. i moved a power head over the rocks and sure enough, tons off poop and excess came flying out. so im dont with the rocks. not worth the effort to keep them clean.
You need a lot of filtration with Africans, at least 10-15 times the tank volume per hour. The rocks provide shelter for stressed fish and somewhere to sleep at night. The rocks also help to break up sight lines so as to help stem aggression as well.
The Africans would not mind the current flow from a few powerheads. I have 2 maxijet 1200's running in circulation mode in my 75g tank and had 4 in the 180g tank. The 75g tank I have has a Rena XP4 and Fluval FX5 on it for filtration.
I really would stay away from looking to keep discus until you can keep the tank water pristine clean. Any "bad" stuff in the water for Discus and they can get stressed, sick or die quick. They absolutely need crystal clear water with extremely low Nitrates.
It can take almost a year to mature a tank enough to be able to keep Discus in, it is totally irrelevant if you do not have the right water out your tap to start off with to keep them. There is a lot of work in maintaining water parameters for Discus and many people will kill fish simply on the fact you have to be dedicated to keeping the water near perfect for them.
At the end of the day though it is your personal choice and we will help out as much as we can.
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