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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone my friend is selling his standard 4 foot 75 gallon fish tank with a built in sump. He wants to know if I'm interested in it, but I would really like to make it into a discus tank. First I have a few questions...

1) How many discus could I fit in this size tank, I know they like height more than length, so would this limit how many I could have?

2) I have seen a lot of plants and other things in some discus tanks on this and other sites. What kind of plants go best and look the best in discus tanks. Also do I need a special light for these plants?

3) What other types of fish could I get along with the discus in this size tank? I'm not a huge fan of the normal community fish like tetras and stuff, so maybe rams or something? I have no knowledge of American cichlids haha

4) Maybe show me some pics of a discus set up you have that has been successful for you.

5) What hardness and pH do they like? And I think they like higher temps is that right?

Thanks for any help.
 

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a 75g with a sump can be a great choice for a first time Discus tank. Are you thinking of buying youngsters? or adult Discus?

You could likely have a group of 8, or a mated (proven) pair with pretty good success. Personally, I would go with barebottom to grow out a group of 8... it's a ton of fun to watch these little things grow and mature and the barebottom tank allows for a nice warm tank that you can keep pristine!

Don't do plants and Discus unless you've done both prior... my 2 cents.

As for the hardness of the water (please ignore pH), match the water as closely as you can from wherever the Discus were bred. Get your fish from a local breeder if you can... ask him/her what the fish were grown out in and match it! :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm thinking of getting them a fry and growing them out, and I was a little worried about the plants so I guess I'll just cross those off the list haha. And you think just the 8 will be good? All of the same species as well? And I have Africans and they have specific male/female ratios, same with discus or different?

I wanted to get maybe a bushynose pleco along with some corys and maybe something else? Or would you recommend just the discus?

Thanks for the help so far! :D
 

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Don't mean to highjack the thread, but how many do you guys think would work well in a 55 gallon? Heavily planted, no other fish? I was thinking 6, but I am probably wrong :/
 

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mattawan_cichlid
Rift lake cichlids do NOT have specific male/female ratios... such conventional "wisdom" saves the fish owner on the aggression side but costs the owner in ways they don't even know.

Discus are truly a pair bonding cichlid... during non-breeding times, they normally congregate in the wild in large family "pods" and then sneak off with their mate when it's time to breed. You can mimic this in a longer aquarium, but not in a 4 footer IME. You can get close though, so in a 75g tank, I'd have nothing but driftwood and a group of Discus... place a breeding cone at a far end of the tank behind some driftwood once they grow up and see if a pair forms from the 8.

I've paid as much as $30 per Discus, and as cheap as $10.

scarhbar, I'm very tempted to start another Discus tank and do a 55g tank with 7 Discus on a two tier stand with a 55g tank as a sump. It would allow for huge 50% water changes with zero disruption to the Discus... ideal!

Do NOT do plants with a 1st try at Discus... unless you are a planted tank guru...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well the mbuna I have need 1 male, with at least 4 females usually. So I was just wondering but thanks for all the help Numer6!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Another question, would I just get 8 of the same discus, or should i get half one species, half another. Or would they crossbreed. Also Number6 maybe send me a PM as to where you get ur discus at such a cheap price, cuz my LFS has some crappy ones for 65 bucks haha
 

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Most folks now agree that there is only 1 species of Discus. Do you mean breed? If so, your choice... They are simply line bred.
 

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number6 is in florida. where the local fish breeding tends to be pretty high. large supply plus a lower demand means better prices for him. if your serious about discus i suggest posting an add on your local craigslist or even this forum. typically can save a lot of money getting specimens from local guys. also getting them as juvies and growing them out. isnt the best idea. for the first 4 inches of growth discus can be VERY sensitive. this is where you would typically see a lot of die off. go from there and just dont be afraid to do LOTS of reading. dont believe it all but routine water changes and stable water conditions will allow them to thrive. try not messing with things too much. GL to ya
 

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Depends. Do you want a display tank or attempt to breed discus?

If it's a display tank, buy what ever you think is pretty. If you want to breed discus, you will have a lot of reading and learning to do, and will need a decent amount of cash to start out with.

Keeping discus is nothing like keeping mbuna or keeping quite a few of the other SA cichlids for that matter. You can start by visiting a site called SimplyDiscus. Read most of the articles in the library section there before jumping on the message boards and asking questions.
 

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mattawan_cichlid said:
I mean the types, snakeskin, pigeon blood, etc. Should I stick with one type or different or what?
those are breeds, like dog breeds. Your choice... I'm going to second the suggestion of the articles here on cichlids forum and other quality sites like simply discus.com
 

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Number6 If you are interested in Blue Diamond or pidgeon bloods which are used to normal hard florida water i can connect you with a local breeder over here in Kissimmee with some great prices. i bought from him a year ago and have had zero problems as a first time discus keeper. His prices are extremely low, breeding for him is more like an insane hobby(his entire 2 car garage is devoted to it.)

I keep my six in a 90 gal(w 40 gal sump) planted tank. They love it. They came right up to the glass for feeding on day one. I do a big(75%) water change once every three weeks and a minor(I empty the sump and turn the return pump off, takes about 15 minutes) once a week. Since I got them locally, I use straight tap water with dechlorinator.
 

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blue tang i did the exact same thing. theyre all loving it. was a prexisiting plant setup so maybe that helps with the nitrate blooms and such. overall i couldnt be happier.
 
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