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Thread: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

  1. #31
    Registered Member sonflowerjoela's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Thanks bastalker for response. I use the flourish tabs and they say every 3 months. My plants have done really well since I did this. Where before they all just died. I don't have good lighting. I'm looking for some of the other plants listed here. Thanks again.
    <'(((>< <'(((><
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  2. #32
    Registered Member fobincorporated's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Planted discus tank is rewarding, but if you just start by diving into the discus AND plants setup, be ready to lose alot of fish (which i did, felt horrible). Everything takes patience, even if you DO NOT have the time to wait for it, that's just how everything goes!

  3. #33
    Registered Member GrillMaster's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    It definitely can be a challenge.

    I feel the biggest problem with people trying this out for the first time is just like you mentioned, starting out to fast. Not waiting till the tank and plants have had time to get established.

    If you start off with the proper substrate, proper plants (where adding ferts to the water column is not necessary), let the plants establish themselves under proper lighting for 3-6 months. Add some expendable fish and see how the plants do with heavy feeding for a while. This will help get a balance with the fish and plants. Once you are confident, an everything looks like it is growing well, then put your prize possessions in there and remove the other fish you dont want. Preferably adults.

    The one fish for every 10 gallons does not apply to a planted tank since plants an substrate can take up to as much as 30% of a tanks volume. Maybe a little more in a very densely planted tank with other occupants in there besides the discus.This is one reason a smaller planted tank under say 55G doesn't work that well with discus. This would reduce the amount of discus you can comfortably put into a planted tank. We all know discus do better in numbers. Another thing to consider is the smaller the tank, the quicker the water will fowl. Yes there are exceptions to every rule, but you should try to at least give yourself the upper hand.

    You will want a very good cleanup crew to take care of whatever the discus dont. The last thing you want is uneaten food, an fish waste through the plants an substrate you cant reach during WC's to lay in the tank an rot. The plants will utilize this waste to an extent, but to much excess food an waste will foul the water fairly quickly

    IMO this would be the easiest method to jump into a planted discus tank.

    tc
    Mark

  4. #34
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Dear all,

    my name is Heiko Bleher and I saw the texts for planted Discus tank.
    As some of you may know I have researched and worked with discus all my life since the early 1950s - and most of the other freshwater fishes around the world (but that is not important, if you dont). And I showed many times in exhibitions and in international shows as well as in my recent book, how discus live. So I want to give you some advice to make your discus aquarium a biotope as to what the "king of the Amazon" deserves.
    Mark made a lot of work here and wrote a long text, but I cannot suggest the following:
    1. Do NOT buy alot of plants !
    The less can plant in the tank the better. The tank should NEVER be densely planted. Discus will feal on another planet... (it is like when you displace an forest elephant into the desert).
    2. Do NOT plant Cryptocoryne species in a discus aquarium (crypts are only found in Asia, were no discus lives, discus do not know what they are...) and do NOT plant Vallisneria, as they also do not know them and can get tangeled up in it.

    What you should do for a 75G tank:
    give very fine white sand into it as substrate. If you want a few white ROUND rocks, ok, but your most important decoration is a beautiful piece of driftwood, and/or a large root (it can stick out of the water) - but all the wood must be watered for at least 1-2 weeks (a month is better and water changes adviced to do in between).
    If you insist to have plants, than only some large sword plants (ie Echinodorus bleheri and/or E. grandifolius or E. grandiflorus which grow out of the water as in nature) and if you want some section with dwarf plants, than E. tenellus or similar dwarf sword plant. The only other plants I can suggest are: floating plants, like Eichhornia crassipes, Pistia stratiotes, Lemna and/or Azolla, or Salvinia. But note that for most of these floating plants the top of the tank must be open - as in nature and good light above.

    I suggest for discus NO CO2, no cardinals, black neons, for compatible rather some Geophagus, Uaru, Biotodoma, angelfishes and maybe some Leporinus. Corydoras only if you really wnat them, than a small group.

    And as Mark said correctly: Take everything slow, an by no means rush putting discus into your new planted tank. Of course quarantine any new fish prior to introducing them into your planted tank.

    All the very best

    Heiko Bleher


    *

  5. #35
    Registered Member scolley's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Mr. Bleher, having you post here is quite an honor. Thank you. I've got your recent book up in my room, with goodness knows how many pages book marked. And I'm anxiously awaiting your next one!

    Could you could help us with a bit of clarification with regard to your post...

    Are you suggesting that these are absolute rules for keeping discus with plants?

    Or are you making these suggestions with regard to creating an environment for discus that is the most like their natural environment?

    Thanks in advance.
    Steve -
    Discus novice. Planted tank pilgrim.

  6. #36
    Registered Member Ed13's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Hey Steve, you think he had a hand in the creation of this tank?
    http://showcase.aquatic-gardeners.or...0&vol=3&id=141

    I think this is what he meant!
    When science and magic collide, the story begins.

  7. #37
    Registered Member scolley's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Good catch Ed! That tank is an inspiration to me. And Jeff Senske has gone on record stating that the tank was named after the things he learned from Mr. Bleher about keeping discus in planted tanks.

    But my own, very limited experience, has demonstrated to me that discus can thrive - if mating like rabbits is an indication of thriving - in habitats somewhat unlike their natural environments.

    So while it would appear that conditions other than what was described previously by Mr. Bleher can still keep discus happy, and present something beautiful to the eye, that description may have been specifically for reconstructing an accurate biotope. If so, it stands as not only an excellent clarification, but also a standard by which we can understand what our fish will feel "most natural" with.
    Last edited by scolley; 05-15-2007 at 10:34 PM.
    Steve -
    Discus novice. Planted tank pilgrim.

  8. #38
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Heiko,

    What type of Geophagus's do you see with Discus in the wild?

    Thanks,

    Chris

  9. #39
    Registered Member GrillMaster's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Steve....You need no inspiration my friend. You have it down to a science when it comes down to havin discus in a planted tank!! You just have the planted tank thing down whether it has has discus in it or not!

    It jus happens ta have discus in it. Well it is a trash can thing at the moment, but Steve....If ya got yer discus spawnin in a trash can, I jus cant wait ta see what they will do in the next tank yer gonna be settin up...

    tc
    Mark

  10. #40
    Registered Member scolley's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Thank you Mark! But I am NO EXPERT.

    What would be beneficial though, if we can get another moment of Mr. Bleher's time, is if we can get a call as to whether his last post is in reference to discus keeping in general, or discus keeping with plants (and fauna) that are true to the environment they are found in.

    This may sound like I'm splitting hairs, but I'd like to think that I'm not... My fish are are happily copulating in an environment that could not be further than their natural habitat. But it seems to make them happy. And it is pleasing to my eye.

    Mr. Bleher is aware, from a lifetime of professional observation an documentation, that our planted discus tanks are FAR from what discus encounter in their natural environment. So the question remains outstanding:

    Are the guidelines previously provided by Mr. Bleher appropriate to discuss keeping in general?
    Or do they only apply to those practitioners who are compelled to replicate, as closely as possible, those conditions from which our beatiful fish arise?
    Steve -
    Discus novice. Planted tank pilgrim.

  11. #41
    Registered Member GrillMaster's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    I cant argue about anything Heiko stated at all. A natural Discus biotope is the ultimate planted tank to have by far. That can be achieved also if that is what the Discus owner is after.

    I still stick by my guns though as far as planting densely in a new tank, especially without C02. Fast growing plants that have been mentioned previously will help the tank mature algae free, or at least keep it to a minimum. After the tank has matured (several months) and the plants (swords) are growing good, the tank can be scaped to have the biotope look if desired.

    If the hobbiest an the Discus are happy, I'm not sure that plants not native to thier natural enviroment will matter much. I believe water quality will be more of an issue than the plants. Of course the fish need swimming room and the plants an wood will have to be scaped accordingly. In addition if driftwood is used, make sure all sharp ends are removed to prevent injury to the fish if they get spooked an dart.

    The post was designed to give the hobbiest the easiest way to have a planted tank with the least amount of algae.

    tc
    Mark

  12. #42
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Quote Originally Posted by Heiko Bleher View Post
    1. Do NOT buy alot of plants !
    The less can plant in the tank the better. The tank should NEVER be densely planted. Discus will feal on another planet... (it is like when you displace an forest elephant into the desert).
    2. Do NOT plant Cryptocoryne species in a discus aquarium (crypts are only found in Asia, were no discus lives, discus do not know what they are...) and do NOT plant Vallisneria, as they also do not know them and can get tangeled up in it.
    this may be the case for WILD discus, i cannot see this being the case for captive bred discus. a wild discus will not feel at home unless you can replicate their home environment but a captive bred/raised one will have no problems adapting to different plants etc since they have never experienced the wild

    and to take it a step further, wild discus are not used to glass walls either, where does one draw the line

  13. #43
    Registered Member GrillMaster's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    Quote Originally Posted by jersey600 View Post
    this may be the case for WILD discus, i cannot see this being the case for captive bred discus. a wild discus will not feel at home unless you can replicate their home environment but a captive bred/raised one will have no problems adapting to different plants etc since they have never experienced the wild

    and to take it a step further, wild discus are not used to glass walls either, where does one draw the line
    There is no real line to draw at all. Its a matter of preference. If you want a natural biotope, then driftwood an a few floating plants is the way to go, like Hieko was explaining. If you want a planted tank with discus in it, then that is a very obtainable goal as well.

    Keep in mind that what we ultimately want is a very stable an healthy enviroment for our Discus.

    tc
    Mark

  14. #44
    Registered Member gparr's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    With all of this talk about planted tanks, is anyone going to share any pics of their lo-tech tank?

  15. #45
    Registered Member pcsb23's Avatar
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    Default Re: So ya wanna planted Discus tank?

    give me a little while, I'm just starting a new one
    Paul

    Comfortably numb.

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