View Full Version : Planning a 55g + this summer

03-30-2008, 07:38 PM
I may invest in another 55g+ this summer and I am thinking about discus. My pH straight out of the tap is 7.6-7.8 which is WAY to high. How can I lower this? I can usually lower it to 7.2 through driftwood. I don't want to use buffers really as that can cause more harm than good. What are some good bottom feeders to put in with them and how many gallons each do they need? Is this going to end up being something I DON"T wanna go for and should look for another type of fish?

03-30-2008, 07:40 PM
Peat moss in filters would do good. If you have a small extra filter, put nothing but peat in it. It will turn your water brownish, but it will lower your pH considerably.

Also, corys are good for bottom feeders.

03-30-2008, 07:41 PM
I'm think you'll need to have Reverse Osmosis water (either buy the unit to produce it or see if your LFS will sell you it) and top up with a mix of this and tap water every week when you do a water change...although you might ask at the fish store what where you're planning to buy them what the pH is in their tanks. Maybe if close to yours, it might not be an issue.

03-30-2008, 08:05 PM
I have always heard discus are at greater risk of disease and such at a higher pH and they are already hard to keep.

03-30-2008, 08:24 PM
i think discus would make a sweet tank.

03-30-2008, 08:28 PM
I'm not so sure that they are at a greater risk of disease, just more finicky to living in an extremely clean environment which is not hard if you have the time and the discipline. Sailor (if his gf allows) is going to be getting some and they have been living in about the same pH that you currently have, that's why I suggested you touch base with your lfs. You might pm ILuvMyGoldBarb for some more detailed advice as he has some and he seems a walking/living/breathing encyclopedia of things fishy :hmm3grin2orange:

03-30-2008, 09:09 PM
Discus are very finiky.....

Ideal 5-6 ph
kh over 5 and gh 5 or so.......
Temperature around 83 degrees

Discus buffers are okay but fluctuate the tanmk like you said. If you can get a stable ph around the mid to high 6's you may be okay. They need extremely clean water so make sure the tank is established and well cycled. They are very prone to poisioning from water quality.

03-31-2008, 12:46 AM
you can use peat to lower it down. they like a PH of around 6 and a temperature of 84f-86f

03-31-2008, 01:36 AM
What about a 55g with a Rena XP4 for filtration and a whisper 10 on it with peat in it? I could cycle it and just keep corys in it for a while, say a month or so to make sure it is established well and then add about 3-4 discus from a local breeder. Does Anacharis make a good plant for them? I could make it to where it is kind of a jungle in there with long flowing pieces of anacharis in it and some brazilian pennywort on the sides for shade with maybe a big piece of driftwood covered in javamoss and an amazon sword.

03-31-2008, 11:55 PM
Discus would be fine, I have 2 discus in a 75g I use a peat filter as my ph is around 7.8, with the peat it buffers at 6.8, mine love the dark water as this is part of their natural habitat. I keep my heat at 86 degrees and also have neon tetras and rasbora's with them to make for a beautiful tank, they also love a planted tank, I have had my discus for about a year and have never had a problem with them as far as disease goes, I did have a problem with aggression however this was because the tank I had them in was to small. Since moving them, their is peace and harmony, I also have rams with them and cory's. Discus love dark water, I have a black background and dark substrate, this makes viewing them a pleasure but photography is next to impossible, I hope this helps:)

04-01-2008, 01:10 AM
Lol I have a tank with the back painted black so I know about the pics. I will probably paint the back of the tank black for a background like on my 29g. Thanks for the info!!

04-04-2008, 02:40 AM
I've been keeping 7 juvie discus in a 46g for about 4 months now. My tap ph is 8.6 if I read it right away. If I let the water stand for 24 hours it lowers to 7.2 all on it's little lonesome.:19: In order to not shock the fish with the ph changes I keep a Rubbermaid trash can next to the tank and age the change water. I actually keep a little bag of crushed coral in the bottom of the can to add some buffering. It also has a heater to match temps and a Fluval just to agitate the water. Every day I remove 50% of the water and add it back from the trash can. Then fill up the can, add a dechlor product and I'm all set.

This is my first time for keeping discus and I frankly expected to lose some in the initial learning period. Turns out they are doing so well I'll have to sell a couple or be overstocked!

Hope some part of this is helpful.