Other Fish for Your Discus Aquarium Part 1pearls7_discus
WHY SHOULD I ADD OTHER FISH TO MY DISCUS AQUARIUM?
Not only will adding other fishes to your discus aquarium make your tank look stunning, it will also provide practical benefits. Discus are shoaling fish, meaning that they enjoy being around groups of five or more. Being around large groups helps them to destress and feel secure. For this reason, adding more fishes to your discus aquarium can be a great idea.
Additionally, adding certain fishes can help maintain a clean tank. As we describe in this article, corydoras and other fishes will actually clean your tank. As discus need a pristine environment, this cleaning is useful.
Another benefit is that certain fishes will help your discus feel safe. As we’ll describe in more depth in this article, dither fish swim freely out in the open and show a timid discus that its environment is safe. In this way, the dither fish will encourage the discus to swim out in the open.
In this article, we’ll first describe and list the fishes you can add to your discus aquarium. Afterward, we’ll describe which fishes to avoid adding to your aquarium.
WHAT FISH CAN I ADD TO MY DISCUS AQUARIUM?
Many tropical fishes will enjoy living with your discus. Tetras are gentle enough for your discus. In the wild, discus are often found swimming around them. The cardinal and lamp eye tetras are the most common ones to be kept with discus. Tetras are dither fish, meaning that they swim throughout the tank in the open. In this way, dither fish encourage discus to swim around the tank. When discus see dither fish freely swimming around in the open, they realize that their environment is safe to swim in. They feel secure and become willing to swim out in the open. Additionally, since tetras don’t eat much, they won’t fight with your discus for food. In the first photo below, you’ll see a cardinal tetra. After that, you’ll see a photo of one of our aquariums holding tetras, discus, and other fishes.
Albino Yellow Crystal Discus with Tetras and Goldfish
Since discus appreciate clean tanks, you might want to bring in fishes that will help you clean your tank. Corydoras (also known as corycats or corys) are excellent tank mates for discus. They spend most of their time around the gravel, and they will eat food particles=. When you have corys, keep your tank’s temperature at about 82 to 83 degrees Fahrenheit, since they don’t like anything warmer than that. Corycats with different hues and patterns abound. Look at these below.
Green Stripe Corydoras
Ancistrus also help keep your tank clean by eating algae. Be sure to supplement their nutrition with high quality algae wafers regularly, and put a piece of driftwood in your tank to help them with digestion.
Here is a list of compatible fish friends for your discus:
- Clown Loaches
- German Blue Rams
- Rummy Nose Tetras
- Glowlight Tetras
- Cardinal Tetras
- Other Tetras (except black and lamp eye tetras)
- Emerald Catfish
- Royal Whiptail
- Black Ghost Whiptail
- Spotted Headstander
- Pictus Cat
- Clown Peckoltia
- Cockatoo Cichlid
- Other Cichlids
- Bolivian Ram
- Dwarf Loach
- Pearl Gourami
- Harlequin Rasbora
- Black Ruby Barb
- African Butterfly Fish
- Loricariids (“Plecos”)
- Black Neons
- Cardinal Neons
- Lemon Tetras
- Bleeding Hearts
Manacapuru Red and Blue Discus with Tetras and Altums
Manacapuru Red and Blue Discus with Tetras and Altums Close Up
WHAT FISH SHOULD I NOT ADD TO MY DISCUS AQUARIUM?
Many tropical fish are territorial, meaning that they choose a small section of the tank and defend it as their own. Since discus drift throughout the tank, they don’t get along well with territorial fish.
Large fish might intimidate your discus or compete with them for food. Avoid fish that are larger than your discus or that eat aggressively.
Also, avoid high-energy fish that swim quickly throughout your tank, such as danios. Many of these fish nip other fish’s fins, which would hurt the discus.
Since discus enjoy warm, acidic water, don’t bring in fish that aren’t suited to this water type.
Here is a list of species to not bring in to your discus aquarium:
- Black Tetra (Black Skirt Tetra) – fin nippers
- Lamp Eye Tetra – too large and aggressive
- Banjo Catfish
- Silver Dollars – plant eaters, too large and aggressive
Also, don’t bring young, smaller discus into an aquarium that holds significantly larger discus. The big discus would bully the little discus and prevent them from getting any food. Instead, first grow the small discus in a separate container. Once the discus grow big enough, you can add them to your tank that holds your other discus.
- Which species of fish will help you with cleaning your tank?
- Which species of fish will you bring to your discus aquarium?
- Which species will you avoid bringing to your discus aquarium?