Discus in a 10 gallon? TEMPORARILY
Recently I saw some discus in my local pet store and fell in love with them! They are only about 2"-3", and cluster around the front of the glass to look at you. They are on sale, and I don't think the store has them very often. Would it be all right to put them in a 10 gallon for now, then move them into a new 55 gallon I'm getting in a couple of months? I have been doing some research, and several sites say young discus do better slightly overcrowded. If I follow the general rule of 1" of fish per gallon, that is slightly overcrowded. I have a pleco and two BGKs (still juvenile) in my tank that I will also be moving to the 55 gallon. I have everything I will need to feed them (I will buy discus pellets) and know what it takes to care for them. Does it sound alright to keep them in a 10 gallon for now?
I THINK, that they like to be in groups as well, each fish requiring 10 gallons to themselves, so I would say not to keep them in a 10g for a few months. I wanted to get some really bad myself, but after hours of research I didn't even want to make them suffer in my 29g tank.
No you may not keep Discus in a ten gallon tank. Each fish requires ten gallons and juvenile fish, such as those you saw ,need to be fed several SMALL feedings each day to achieve their potential and a ten gallon tank ,will be too difficult to maintain the water quality =zero ammonia,zero,nitrites and nitrAtes under twenty. Discus also appreciate warmer temperatures than many fish with 82 degrees being about as cool as They like. Due to the frequent feedings mentioned for juvenile fish and subsequent frequent water changes needed to maintain the water quality,,, I would wait until I had the 55 gall up and running with mature biological filter before I considered the Discus. This would allow you ample time to research all you can find on their care. Your fish store may be able to order the Discus for you when you can provide proper enviornment.
I would not keep more than a small group of Tetras in a ten gallon tank. And then only for a few weeks ,to ensure that they were healthy before placing them in my display tank.
Still... I thought that only adult discus needed 10 gallon each. Good point on the water quality, though.
You should be cautious if your pleco is a common pleco... they will grow far too big for a 55g (think more like... a 155g!) and are poop-factories on top of that. I guess you can see the dilemma about keeping a very expensive, sensitive fish with a fish that will overstock a 55g on it's own :s
In an earlier post you mentioned two BGK which I am assuming are Black Ghost Knifefish. A 55g is too small a tank for these. They grow to 20 inches or more, and most sites recommend a minimum 4-foot tank for young fish.
Keeping a potentially large fish in a small tank negatively affects its growth. And unlike humans, most fish continue to "grow" throughout their lives. But, this is not a benign process that results in a miniature version of the adult just because it is in a small space. What occurs is termed "stunting" which involves numerous health problems as the fish develops (grows). A defective immune system is one common result of stunting, which results in the fish contracting diseases and issues that it would otherwise be able to fight off. In addition to the physical size limitation of the small tank which causes considerable stress to the fish, there is a problem with the water chemistry in a small space; the fish is literally being slowly poisoned by not having sufficient water.
Young fish must be transferred regularly to larger and larger aquaria as they grow to allow for normal development. This can be an expensive proposition. Providing the maximum size needed at the start is preferable. But either way, one has to be prepared to provide adequate housing throughout the fish's expected lifespan.
This is why 1077 correctly advised that a 10g is inadequate for discus, in addition to the issues over a group and feeding, etc.
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