Discus Fish (Symphysodon aequifasciatus) care info

comments (0) February 24th, 2018     

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Discus fish - Symphysodon aequifasciatus

Discus fish - Symphysodon aequifasciatus


The discus fish is an exceptionally glamorous aquarium fish among the pet fish managers because of it perfect tinge and circle shaped body. It is a Actinopterygian cichlid fish under Cichlidae family of order Perciformes. The genus name Symphysodon came from Greek, syn, symphysis meaning grown together and Greek, odous meaning teeth. It was first depicted by French zoologist Jacques Pellegrinin 1904.


Distribution and Habitat

In nature, it is found in the tributaries of Amazon river basin which is located between in Colombia and Peru. It is also found in the Rio Tocantins seepage of Brazil. In wild condition, it prefers to occupy still or moderate moving waters where available rocks and tree roots make safety region. It does form school and likes to remain in the gloomy or dusky regions during the day time.


Common names

It is also called the King of Aquarium fish, Blue Discus, Blue-Head Discus, Cobalt Discus, Blue Faced Discus, Red Thunder Discus, pompadour fish and so forth. 


Body shape and colors

It has circle shaped and laterally packed body with little splendid red eyes. Body is dull darker to blue and green in shading with nine dim and vertical stripes. Body additionally contains dark, yellow and red pigmentation. Dorsal fin is rounded with long based while the pelvic fins are saber shaped. 


Size and life span

It grows up to 24 cm long and its life expectancy ranges from 8 to 10 years or more with legitimate care. 


Quick Facts

Scientific Name: Symphysodon aequifasciatus

Origin: Amazon River Basin

Grown up size: up to 24 cm

Temperament: Peaceful

Tank Level: All level of the tank

Minimum Tank Size: 55 gallons

Diet: Carnivore

Breeding: Egg layer

pH: 6.2-6.7

Hardness: 10 - 150 dGH

Temperature: 82.0 to 88.0 degree Farenheit

Water Movement: Moderate

Lighting: Moderate - normal lighting

Care level: Moderate to Difficult

Lifespan: 10 years or more



It is a carnivorous and in nature, it primarily feeds on little fish, baby fish, insects and their hatchlings and other invertebrates. In aquarium condition, it takes Artemia (brine shrimp), bloodworms, slashed meat, white worms and heart. It also takes Spirulina pieces, spinach, little fish and discus pellets. To keep your fish more cheerful, you should give feed 2-3 times every day. 


The disk requires no less than 55 gallons tank with open territory for swimming. The tank ought to have some aquatic plants like the Dwarf Lily Bulbs, java fern Water Onions, Sagittaria subulata Ozelot Swords, Rotala Indica, Rangeri Swords and so on. The tanks should also have great water current using air pumps alongside strong and proficient filtration. To know more about the most popular air pumps visit here. For this situation carbon filtration should be utilized to keep up water quality. To keep your tank condition healthy, 20-25 % tank water should be changed each week. 


Tank mates

Discus is a community or schooling fish and should be kept with around 6 or more individuals. Reasonable tank mates incorporate Neon Tetra, Emperor Tetra Cardinal Tetra, Glowlight Tetra, Rummynose Tetra, or Congo Tetra. It should not be housed with Corydoras Catfish or Angelfishes because of their ferociousness.



The discus fish is an egg layer. It can easily breed in aquarium condition with proper care. In spawning season, the develop female lays up to 400 eggs on different substrates such as plants, driftwoods, rocks in the aquarium. Breeding tank should have a good quality of water with a pH of 6.2 – 6.7, hardness of 10-15° dGH and temperatures that should be between 82 and 88° F. Eggs incubate in around 2 – 3 days. After hatching, baby fish should be nourished with Artemia (brine shrimp) or any liquid fish food.



For the most part, the male is bigger than the female of a similar age. Gravid female has rounded papilla while the male bears more pointed papilla. Besides these, thicker lips and sharp dorsal fin are also present in male.




The discus is hardy fish but sometimes it is susceptible to fish diseases due to poor water quality and improper management of aquarium. Due to lack of ample hiding space, this fish becomes susceptible to illness with Ich. Discus fish also is affected by skin flukes and different parasitic infestation such as Protozoa, bacterial infections, worms,  fungal infections etc.


Treatment and prevention of diseases

· To prevent ich, the temperature of the tank water should be increased to 860F for at least 3 days.


· You can also use copper based fish medications to remove ich. In this case, you must follow the manufacturer instructions to use copper. For caring intestinal disease, metronidazol is used with proper dose.


· To prevent any infestation with bacteria or parasites, you should quarantine new tank mates, new aquarium plants and thoroughly wash and clean filter elements, decorations, before introducing them to the aquarium. 





The discus fish is an extremely appealing and well known fish among the pet fish managers because of its plate formed body with magnificent body shading. Some of the time, it is additionally called the King of the Cichlids by various pet fish keepers. At present, this fish is accessible in the nearby or online pet shops with sensible cost. We prescribe you to keep this appealing fish in your tank for recreational purpose.

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