Posted: Thu Mar 02, 2006 5:24 pm Post subject: Tips to convert Discus tank into a Planted Discus Tank
I have a Discus tank at home for over a year now and is quite stable with all fishes healthy. It has always been my dream to have a beautiful planted tank with Discus in them. Not sure if I should have started with Plants first and then introduce Discus later. Now that I have these beautiful creatures alreay enjoying their setup, I am little skeptical to alter the setup. Hence asking for suggestions to convert it into a planted tank in a safe manner.
Thanks Mitul & Aquascapes.
Looks like I did not make myself very clear. I have visited many sites that explain how to setup planted discus tanks and I know the basics (theory only so far). Normally for a planted tank, first the tank is setup only with plants and when it is stable looks like they introduce fish. Am I wrong in making this assumption ? My main concern is that, I am not very sure if I can add fertilizers, macros, micros, CO2, etc., without having any effect on the discus out there. If I have to ask it differently, should I transfer the Discus fishes to a different aquarium 1st and then convert into a planted tank? Or can I go ahead and introduce plants, fertilizers etc., directly while the fishes are around?
i would never do it..i have kept discus both in planted and bare bottom tanks and they have never looked more happier than they do in a bare bottom setup...the daily large water changes and clean water do them a world of good.Having plants and stuff there is a possibility of having food stuff getting stuck which cannot be removed during water changes thus spoiling the water quality.Also plants require high lighting which discus somehow dont appreciate..
Why dont you instead have a large piece of drift wood in the center with annubias and java fern and some java moss on it.Maybe even some floating plants.
Iam no expert on discus its just my observation on keeping them.
Joined: Jul 04, 2003 Posts: 1133 Location: Coimbatore, India
Posted: Thu Mar 02, 2006 7:33 pm Post subject:
Your idea is a cool one, and will surely work. Only thing is that your discus should be adults. Thats the answer to your question. Young discus cannot take the wide fluctuations, and chemicals in a planted tank, as they are growing then.
This is how you would need to do it. Start a tank where you want the final planted setup. A planted tank takes 100 days in my opinion to mature. If you really want to use the tank that you have housed your discus now, to be the planted tank, get a tank that would hold your discus for these 100 days. You could get a second hand tank from your LFS on an agreement that they wil take it back, in about 3 to 4 months.
Now, setup your planted tank. Use a sustrate heating cable. This helps in gentle water movement through the substrate. You will have to use a pressurized CO2 setup[cylinder, needle valve, and solenoid], with the solenoid connected parallel to your Metal Halide lighting. I would suggest a pH controller, as it helps reduce major pH swings and fluctuations. You can plant all the plants that you lay your hands on. Once the growth starts off, you could slowly change over to the slow growing plants and all the exotic plants that you want. You could introduce your algae crew[ottocinclus are great, SAEs are cool too], in the second week. You could start CO2 in the second week, and also start off dosing and regular water changes from the 2nd or 3rd week.
All this will take off well, you will see an algae attack, and you will resolve it, and you will be able to sit back and enjoy your tank on the 100th day.
That is when you can introduce your discus. At this time, everything is do finetuned that you are dosing the right amount of macros and micros, and correct amount of CO2, and correct photoperiod, so theres never an imbalance in your tank.
Believe me, your discus will be much happier in this tank, as the water as always sparkling clean, and full of oxygen.
Toomanyfish, try keeping discus in a proper planted tank, and you will see them displaying much better color, and will be a lot healthier!
Have kept them in a planted tank maybe my tank was just not good enough then...
How would you feed beefheart in a planted tank?As far as i have read and i may be wrong that the plants and decor is only for us does not really matter to the fish if its there or not..
Thanks Nitin for your encouraging words and the useful tips. I definitely want to give it a try and will keep you posted on the progress.
Having driftwood & few Anubias, Ferns & Moss is also a good suggestion (from Toomanyfish) and I might just start with this suggestion before considering a full scale planted tank.
Regards comments about BHM, I am not very keen growing my discus very quickly and hence I've not fed them BHM so far. So far I am just feeding them frozen bloodworms & brine shrimps alternatively twice a day and they seem to enjoy this diet!!!
Thanks for the caution. To be frank ... though I have spent quite sometime reading about planted tanks, I was ignorant of CO2 poisoning aspect so far. I just did a quick search on the web now and there seems to be enough info on this subject. Will read and try to understand more. Thanks again.
anand if i were you i would never tinker with a set discus tank...you just dont know how your fish might react to their new envioment..and they would never grow to their full potential in a planted tank..
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