Aquarium Livestock Pet Care Guides



South America

Tank Temperature:



pH 6.0-7.0

Tank Requirements:

Requires soft water (0-5 dHK). Provide a tall, planted tank with driftwood and plenty of cover; pristine water quality.


Omnivorous; rich meaty foods like worms and other larvae, beefheart, or quality flakes and small pellets.


Docile, skittish; does not compete well for food; can be territorial during breeding.


Community Safe. Does best in groups of 5 or more. Do not keep with fast-swimming tankmates. Can be kept with some tetras, rams, cory cats, and small plecos.

Species Overview

Discus are considered the Kings of the Freshwater fish! These beautiful and majestic fish can be breathtaking aquarium showpieces, if you take the time to care for them properly. Discus do best in groups. They require pristine water conditions, with relatively low hardness, low pH, and warm temperatures. To keep these fish at their best, be prepared to pay close attention to your water quality and the condition of your fish. Provide at least 8-10 gallons of water per adult discus you plan to keep, starting with a 45 gallon aquarium at least. These fish prefer a tall tank because of their body shape and habits. Discus are timid and can stress easily. Place your discus tank in a low-traffic location where noise and activity are limited.

Discus prefer a well-planted tank with driftwood and plenty of cover. They are quite docile and shy and require a place to retreat and feel safe if necessary, whether it be a dim and shadowy corner or a large cave. They do not compete well for food, so be sure tank mates are equally as docile or much smaller so the discus aren't intimidated. Fast swimming or very active fish can stress discus with their activity. Try Cardinal tetras, Rummy-nose tetras, rams, cory cats, or small plecos as tank mates.

Feed your discus rich, meaty foods like worms and other larvae, beef heart, and a quality flake or small pellet. If you would like to breed your discus, increase the protein in their diet and it may encourage them to lay eggs.

Discus are attentive parents. They attend and protect eggs and fry, keeping their tiny young clustered an out of harm's way to the best of their abilities. They parents will actually secrete mucous on their bodies that the fry will feed on during the very first few weeks that they are free-swimming.

We always suggest that you do further research before adding a new pet to your tank. What we have provided for you are guidelines and suggestions. If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact our fish room at 717-299-5691 ext. 1213 or

Recommended Items

Test Kits
Aquarium Heater
pH Buffers