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Thread: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

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    Default Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Hi All,

    Newbie here. I've kept fish on/off for the past 25 years. I'm new to discus. I've had these guys for about 3 months and I decided to add a few more plants to the scape and a larger piece of driftwood. I'd appreciate constructive criticism. My tank is an old oceanic 120 gal with 2 corner overflows into about a 20 gal sump. The substrate is quartz sand between 0.5-1.5 inch in depth. I have driftwood with anubias and java fern varieties.
    A few rocks and 2 amazon swords. In terms of stock: I have 9 discus between 2.5-6 inches from a local importer from Asia. If I could do it over again, I would have gotten my fish online from Wattley etc... Anyhow, I also have some dithers (cardinals/rummy nose), 8 cory's and 1 small bristlenose pleco. The sump has floss and seachem matrix as well as phosguard (was getting diatoms) as well as carbon and purigen. I have 3 150 watt heaters in the sump and my return pump is rated around 1500 gph (I'm sure is less due to resistance gravity etc..). My pH is 7.8 (locally water supply) I know it's high, but that was also why I went with a local discus importer since the fish were already acclimated to the high pH tap water. I keep it around 30C, and have added root tabs for the swords and crypts in the front.

    I would like to do water changes every other day, but my wife is not too pleased about it. I cut back to every 3-4 days. I do move the wood and rock to remove all of the debri I can find. I feed them vibrabites, beef heart flake, beef heart mix, mysis/brine shrimp. I did lose discus which I later suspected was due to internal parasite. It stopped eating, got bloated and had stringy and pouch like white poop. Another stopped eating and has had the same GI issues. I never dewormed my wish (newbie mistake) so I'm treating the tank with flubendazole and I'll also treat with prazipro next.

    I appreciate any advice/comments. I really enjoy them and they have provided some peace and enjoyment during these crazy times.

    11-25-2021 (1).jpg11-25-2021.jpg

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Tank looks good as do the discus. Is the sick one in quarantine? Or treating the whole tank? Welcome!

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Thanks- the sick guy is in the first pic hiding in the bottom. I unfortunately don't have a quarantine tank, so I'm de-worming the whole tank. I think it's for the best, as I got them all from the same importer and suspect they all have an internal parasite of some kind.

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Yes good move doing them all! But you should pick up a qt tank. Even a used tank. In my tanks I use this filter as a back up.40B09A13-2D25-4EBA-B861-EF05C2D6BCAD.jpg this filter has 2 sponges in it. IF you buy 2 of these and add 1 to your main tank.
    Eat it run for at least a month. When your ready to set up a qt tank (20-30g) just add one of these sponges to the new filter in qt and the tank is cycled .

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Great idea thank you!

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Great looking tank. Amazon sword don’t do well in the sand unless you stimulate it with root tabs. I tried with Seachem root tabs than switched to osmocte plus (in tabs). Without tabs it barely growing, with Seachem was good, with osmocote they are thriving!

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Thanks, I'm trying ApI root tabs

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    hi hi, great start! You may wish to consider some points:

    1. Java, Anubis and crypts are slow growing plants. From the pictures, you look to have quite bright lights. They will get covered with spotted algae quite quickly. You may wish to place them under shade like underneath the drift wood.

    2. Sword plants are ok but I think you may not have enough substrate for the roots to grow properly. I have also grown sword plants in sand substrate before and I agree with one of the posters that you will need to place fert tablets for them to do well.

    3. These plants may undergo abit of melting period when you placed in your tank because they are most probably grown semi-submerged for faster growth. Whereas now that they are fully submerged the amount of CO 2 they get will be much lesser compared to semi-submerged. One way to mitigate this is to pump CO2 but that may be too much effort.

    4. The challenge of a planted tank is that when your discus is sick, many of the treatment methods are not suitable for plants - for example salt and heat. Plants do much better in water under 30c. So you will have to sacrifice the plants if you dose salt in your tank.

    5. Consider just feeding flakes/pellets/dry food. Beef heart fouls the water. Also try not to overfeed. Better to have some feedings 3 times a day as opposed to 1 or 2 big feedings.

    6. Having just pure drift wood is not a bad look. Your drift wood looks good on their own. Maybe at a later stage you can consider removing all the plants and all the round pebbles. It may have a more natural look.

    Most importantly - enjoy your tank and your fish!

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Thank you for your input. I have had issues with algae on the plants. The lights are on for 7 hours, 80% max for only 4 hours, and a bit of a ramp. I have increased the sand around the swords so they can root. I am struggling with wanting to fert the swords and not promote algae growth. Keep my tank around 84-86F. I agree the Beef heart does foul the water. I feed by keeping a small piece in my hands and typically siphone within 24 hours of feeding it. I only feed it when I know I'm going to clean the tank. I have 7 corys and the discus do pick pieces off the bottom. I got some of Al's freeze dried black worms and they like that as well. The issue is it floats and usually falls into my sump which is frustrating. About 50% like the vibrabites and I do feed mysis/brine shrimp and flakes. I like the round pebbles which I added recently. They do come from a river after all. Thanks for all ofyour input and advice!

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    For the blood worms I soak them in a cup of tank water for a minute than spill them in. This way they sink.

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    Default Re: Pic of my "planted" discus tank

    Quote Originally Posted by pablos View Post
    Great looking tank. Amazon sword donít do well in the sand unless you stimulate it with root tabs. I tried with Seachem root tabs than switched to osmocte plus (in tabs). Without tabs it barely growing, with Seachem was good, with osmocote they are thriving!
    Besides root tabs, I've had success with Aquarium Co-ops Easy Green fert and CO2. I've also used root tabs, but wasn't a fan. I've had great success with Swords in sand. Could be the Easy Green but also could be the CO2.

    Edit to add: I would recommend going with more sand so roots can be established and anchor the plant in. Maybe use something like a mesh bag of eco-complete and place that at the bottom, and then have the sand overtop. Adds more depth the the bottom and back of the tank. Probably a little late now though. But when you get that itch to rescape (maybe when the fish have grown more), consider that option. Thanks for sharing your tank! Looks clean and hope the fishies grow well for you!
    Last edited by Phil4Discus; 01-15-2022 at 08:57 AM.

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