Diary of Breeding Discus (photos)
Author: F6F (aquariumfarm, HK)
Translation: JoJo (aquariumfarm, HK)
Original thread in Chinese: http://aquariumfarm.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=54735
My discus had eggs several years ago, I recorded the breeding process. I hope it helps most of the fishkeepers who wants to breed discus.
Breed: a pair of Cobalt Blue Turquoise, which had the experiences of breeding several times.
Size of the aquarium: 15” x 19” x 16”
Water temperature: 30℃
Filter: AA (brand name) overtank external filter & sponge filter
Filter media: general white filter pads
Left: female / Right: male
Before breeding –
They were both placed in the same aquarium. They were cleaning the ceramic egg layer. It means that they were already to breed eggs. It is OK to feed before breeding. Do not to feed any food, which causes high water pollution.
breeding eggs –
Day 1: some of the fertilized eggs were brown in colour. The eggs which were not fertilized became white.
Important points of the percentages of successfully spawning eggs –
1. The percentage will be reduced if both of them do not have many breeding experiences.
2. Water temperature: I usually keep 30℃ – 32℃.
3. Water condition: Do not perform water-change at the moment. Stop using the filter to avoid the new-born discus fry getting sucked into the inlet. It is better to use sponge filter, which is safe for the babies.
4. Feels safety: It is important not to disturb, if they have had no breeding experience. They will probably eat the eggs when frightened. Do not touch anything in the tank, including water changes. It is OK to switch on the aquarium light, surrounding the aquarium with a piece of black cloth is recommended.
From the photos, you can see the difference between the colours of the fish before and after breeding. Their colours are darker after breeding because they secrete something like “milk” to feed their babies, until the new-born discus no longer needs it. The food of new-born discus and the other spicies of fishes are different. New-born discus needs to be fed with “milk” in the first 1-2 weeks. If the parents have not had breeding experience or there is not enough “milk” to feed their young, the young will probably die.
(Left: before breeding / Right: after breeding)
Day 2: It is still necessary to a feed small amount of frozen blood-worm to the parents, do not overfeed to avoid bad water condition. Do not perform water changes at this stage, so it is suggested to use a bigger size of aquarium.
(Discus taking care of their eggs)
Day 3: The parents take care of their young. Do not perform water change. Also, a small amount of feeding is necessary.
(Because I lost the photo, I use this photo to describe. You can see the tails of the eggs)
Day 4: The new-born discus breeding from the eggs. They are in a group and it is easier for the parents to take care of them. Do not perform water changes and, again, a small amount of feeding is necessary.
(Green circle: New-born discus)
Day 5: The new-born discus start to eat the “milk” food, which is secreted from their parents.
(The Discus’ nitrogenous waste piles up because due to the lack of water changes for several days. It is still reasonably harmless. Therefore, it is not necessary to clear it at the moment)
Day 6: A small amount of feeding is necessary. It is okay to perform 1/4 water change as all the newborn discus know to feed themselves with their parents’ “milk”. It is now important to add fresh water with a temperature that is the same as the tank water temperature. The fresh water needs to be added slowly to avoid affecting the new-born discus, which will still be fragile.
A pair of good parents feed their young. It increases the percentages of keeping all the new-born discus alive and in good health. If one of them does not feed their young, it probably will cause some of the new-born discus to die.
Day 7: The new-born discus are getting bigger. It is okay to perform a 1/5 to 1/4 water change. Small amount of feeding (frozen blood-worm) is necessary.
Day 8: The new-born discus are growing up and they have started to swim a distance away from their parents.
Day 12: The colours of the parents are still dark.
It is OK to feed BBS (Brine Shrimp). Feeding a small amount of BBS several times in a day is recommended. Increasing water changes is necessary. Perform 1/3 water-change 2-3 time everyday. Some of the fish-keepers separate the parents. I think that it is okay to let the parents stay with their offspring for longer.
Day 15: The small discus have started to swim away from their parents. At the stage it is okay to separate the parents and the young.
The small discus are separated into another tank. The tank of the parents need water changes and feeding (other better food).
Size of aquarium: 24” x 19” 16”
Filter: Sponge filter only. The over-tank filter had been stopped and is no longer used.
Feeding BBS 4 times a day (every 4 hours).
Day 17: The small discus start to eat BBS.
Day 34: The over-tank filter will be used. It needs to be surrounded by a piece of net to avoid the small discus getting sucked into the inlet.
Day 53: I stopped feeding BBS to the small discus. I have started to feed “beef heart & shrimps”, which help to improve the health and colours. Actually, it is OK to feed frozen bloodworms and “beef heart shrimps” mixed with BBS from day 40. Some of the small discus still need to be fed with BBS.
A year later, they are growing up.