Common name

Commonly referred to simply as Discus, they may also be identified by their colour variety as well.


Scientific names

There are two species of Discus, which have been divided into the following sub-species. Symphysodon aequifasciata axelrodi (Brown Discus) Symphysodon aequifasciata aequifasciata (Green Discus) Symphysodon aequifasciata haraldi (Wild Blue Discus) Symphysodon Discus Discus (Heckel Discus) Symphysodon Discus willischwartzi (Pineapple Discus)


Natural Range

The natural habitat of Discus is the Amazon Basin, where they live amongst the protection of submerged tree roots, logs, and heavy aquatic vegetation. The water is soft, with a GH of 30ppm, and acid, with a pH between 5 and 6. (This differs from the water parameters under which Discus are held in commercial, retail, and home aquaria. See below for these recommended parameters.) It also has a low bacteria count, and is high in humic acid and tannic substances The use of Amazon Extract will help to simulate these conditions. Discus spawn in natural ponds, created during the annual rainy season floods. Here the water reaches temperatures of 32° Celsius.


Tank Range

Discus will hover around the middle to top of the water.


Maximum Size and Longevity

These fish will get to a maximum size of about 20cm. Discus can get to an average age of 10 if kept happy and healthy in the correct water parameters.


Water Quality ·

Temperature: 27°C - 30°C. · pH: 6.2—6.8 (6.5 pH buffer will help keep water at this level)· General Hardness: 50—100 ppm.



Discus will take food from all parts of the aquarium— they will feed at the top and middle, and also graze from the bottom of the tank. It is very important to vary the Discus’ diet with a range of foods. We recommend the addition of Aquarium Industries Naturals Range Frozen Discus Mix, as it has been manufactured for the specific dietary requirements of Discus. Discus have healthy appetites, but they eat in a slow and careful manner. A few Corydoras catfish are useful to clean up left over food.


Handy Hint:

We recommend feeding twice a day with small portions of defrosted food all throughout the tank so that smaller Discus can get food also. Regular water changes are essential to maintain the health and well being of your Discus Fish. Discus are a shoaling fish and best kept in groups.



We recommend keeping Discus with species that originate in South America. Some other community species also do well with Discus. Acceptable tank mates include cardinal tetras, neon tetras, rummy nose tetras, Corydoras and South American dwarf cichlids, like the genus Apistogramma.

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