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Thread: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

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    Default Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    Hi! While I am being helped with finding/general questions for my first discus group, I wanted to get some guidance on tank mates for my discus as I will be purchasing them before my discus.

    The tank is 180 gallons (6' 2' 2') and 83-84 degrees.

    I'm mostly just planning on getting tetras, but I see so much mixed information on what is good with them or not.

    Most likely rummynose and cardinal tetras. Love both of them.

    Here are the ones that I am looking for guidance on: Lemon tetras, black phantom tetras, emperor tetras, and bleeding heart tetras.

    I am also thinking about some sterbai corys, but those seem like a safe option. Would appreciate any other suggestions on tetras and a confirmation on the ones listed.

  2. #2
    Registered Member jwcarlson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    I got some lemon tetras (six was all the local shop had) based on Willie's recommendation of them working well for him with large water changes. Awhile after I added in the rummynose out of my community tank eight of them and one died of stress while netting them, which was odd. One lemon died a few days later so I have 5 lemons and 7 rummys and I would say 75% or more of the time, they're all schooling together. My rummys definitely are pale colored during/after water changes, but they color back up pretty well after the water change or perhaps while it's filling. They snap back to normal behavior in short order, so I don't think they're taking it too hard. I have rescued one from the sink in the basement where water change water drains to and have caught a few getting into my Python, so if it's some sort of automated system, that might be something to consider. I have cardinals in my community tank and I don't really like them because they just don't do much. They certainly don't school much at all especially compared to rummys. I will say that overall the colors of these mostly silverish fish seem kind of washed out in my setup with is beige painted bottom with light blue back. Not a great picture at all, but this is the night I added the rummys. My discus have never appeared particularly aggressive to each other except some minor chasing from time to time, but never ganging up or anything. I haven't even noticed that once I put the dithers in, but they don't really harass the tetras either. Unless it's something happening outside of the times I'm home to see it.

    20220817_175334.jpg

    I keep my tank at 85, it's 75 gallons with 8 Stendker discus grown out from 2.5" to about 5" now, daily 90% water changes. Nothing has been in the tank with them except sponge filters until the last month or so, meaning that you shouldn't take my information as worth much because I've only had discus for 7 months . I'm interested if anyone has done the emperors with discus, because I think those are pretty neat looking fish.
    Last edited by jwcarlson; 09-22-2022 at 08:31 AM.

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    Registered Member bluelagoon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    I like the lemons and the bleeding hearts for their closer/tighter schooling behavior and I had both with discus. The emperors are nice and colorful but they and phantoms don't shoal as well and often swim alone from my experience. I've been looking for some nice emperors but can't seem to find them. All I can find are Kerri tetra that look similar.

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    Silver Member Iminit's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    The dither fish I use: for constant movement I user rummie noses and bosemani rainbows. The rummies never stop moving and are either together or in 2 groups. I’ve got 18 in my 180. Havnt lost one since I added them. Pretty strong too. I’ve found as many as 3 in my overflow filter. When caught and released into tank all did well. I’ve got 6 bosemani in my 125. Much bigger than the rummies but allways moving. Thing is the bosemani are fast fish and do get there share of food. Sometimes before the discus. I like this type of dither. I believe the constant movement keeps the discus from freaking out when you walk past the tank. Other fish I keep with discus are pretty muck worker fish. SAE,ottos bn plecos in all tanks. And I have rams in one tank. My SAE swim with the bosemani in the 125.

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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    I’ve had rummies I’m my overflow as well. Larger cardinals seem to work well.

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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    I'm a sucker for Rummy Nose Tetra's. I've also used Red eyed Tetra's with my discus.

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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    Anyone notice red color fading in their Rummy Nose, that were newly purchased?

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    Registered Member jwcarlson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    Mine go through a period during/after water change that they are faded. Some people call them the canaries of the aquarium. Color seems to come back pretty quick on mine. Like discus, though, I think the barebottom/light background discus tanks they might not get quite as dark as they would in other environs.

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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by jwcarlson View Post
    Mine go through a period during/after water change that they are faded. Some people call them the canaries of the aquarium. Color seems to come back pretty quick on mine. Like discus, though, I think the barebottom/light background discus tanks they might not get quite as dark as they would in other environs.
    There shouldn't be any fish fading when doing water changes, in fact they should color up.

    Cliff

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    Registered Member jwcarlson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    Just the Rummys, my discus don't look any different during changes if that's what you mean. Rummy are kind of famous for telling you how they feel with their nose unless I'm wildly mistaken? They would pale up a bit when changing water in community tank too.

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    Silver Member Iminit's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    My guys like water changes and stay red. But there are 3 types of rummie noses.

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    Registered Member jwcarlson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    How big of changes are you doing, Tom? I don't do 100%, but the discus are laying on their sides surfing around, I call it 90%. It doesn't seem detrimental to the rummys, they's just not super happy. They eat and redden back up basically as soon as it starts filling again.

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    Registered Member Willie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by jwcarlson View Post
    ...Rummy are kind of famous for telling you how they feel with their nose unless I'm wildly mistaken?...
    Rummynose tetras seem to color differently depending on tank decor. In a bare bottom tank without any decoration, their noses just do not turn red. That's one reason I've moved to lemon tetras. They're very different in a tank with lots of plants and light substrate.
    At my age, everything is irritating.

  14. #14
    Registered Member jwcarlson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    Mine get pretty red and stay red outside of during a water change. I wonder how much of it goes back to there being a few different types? Of course all of our water is different too, which could have an effect.
    I've got rummys and lemons in, the lemons aren't particularly brightly colored in my setup, but there's a lot of factors.

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    Silver Member Iminit's Avatar
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    Default Re: Discus Tank Mate Suggestions

    My water changes are 50%.

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