Discus Aquarium Fish Are Cool

I am not very observant, at least that’s what I have been told… by my wife.

But I have to admit, I was really surprised when I observed some beautiful fish in the tank at my doctor’s office recently. I know that the more attractive fish tanks contain saltwater, and the saltwater fish are much more colorful than freshwater inhabitants.

But on this particular visit, I discovered some live discus fish that were not only freshwater creatures, but they were quite beautiful and colorful, too. I had a conversation with the receptionist about the discus aquarium fish, and she told me that it was not saltwater. But I did not believe her and she had to get someone else to confirm that it was a freshwater setup before I would accept that what she said was indeed true.

That’s when I decided to do a little research. See, the reason I have not had an aquarium is that I thought they were too dull. Kind of like all black and white photos and no color. But this discovery reignited my thoughts of getting into the hobby.

I had neither the money or the experience to do a saltwater setup. An aquarium with saltwater is very complicated and requires someone who is fairly expert with water conditions, not to mention much more expensive equipment.

So, here is some of the stuff I found out. But believe me, there is a ton of information that is not included here.

Discus fish are native to the Amazon River in South America (that’s the only place they can be found naturally). They are a subset of the giant animal group known as Cichlids. Cichlids are the largest group of vertebrates in the animal kingdom with over 1500 species of fish, most of which are freshwater. https://discusguy.com/

These beautiful creatures are pretty much round in shape and flat, kind of like an angelfish, but not exactly. By the way, angelfish are also cichlids, but I found out that you shouldn’t combine these two species in the same tank, because angelfish are more aggressive eaters than discus and might deprive them of their nutrition. Now, who would have thunk that?

There are only four types of naturally spawned discus fish. These are Heckel, Brown, Blue, and Green. How in the world “Heckel” got in there instead of another color, I have no idea.

But now that guys like me are popping up all over the globe with an interest in these gorgeous animals, they are being bred by discus breeders. Not only that, but they are being cross-bred (like roses) using scientific selection to get even more varieties… hundreds of different colors and patterns.

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