Some of the best deals and starter Discus you can buy are found in local classified ads. Sometimes hobbyist can turn out better fed and bred Discus than those found at the local fish store.
Really good hobbyist become great sources of information as well as a great source of Discus.
In this article we will talk about how to find Discus, what to take with you and how to strike a deal.
Seems a bit out of the ordinary but for many of us who do not have a local fish store in our town the local newspaper classified ads may be the only way to find Discus.
Usually when sifting through the classifieds, most have a pet section and a few others even go as far as including an aquatic section. When I find ads that contain certain description like:
“Fry with Parents” or “Proven Breeding Pair”
I try to hop on the phone quickly to get first dibs. These are the kind of folks that turn out to be hobbyist with high quality Discus. I don’t want to waist time as these kind of ads are quickly recognized by experienced hobbyist and great Discus go fast!
When I find listings that just mention Discus in passing I call them as well, but in my experience they are usually local pet stores or someone who has a Discus and no longer wants it. From doing this long enough I can say that in my experience these are less desirable sources of Discus.
Alternative local classified ads can be found online and at the local mini-mart or liquor store. Usually they are free and can at times contain Discus listings.
What To Bring With You
After calling and setting up a time and a day to visit, I typically invite a friend to come along with me. You have to remember that this is a strangers home and no matter how friendly they may seem on the phone or in person, they may turn out to be wackos, so bring a friend to be safe.
Also bring your own nets and a bucket or two to keep the fish in. Remember this is not a trip to the fish store and if you are not prepared you will find yourself bringing your Discus back in a leaking zip lock bag, if you are lucky, the Discus will live. You can purchase a five gallon bucket at any large home improvement store, make sure to also get the lid as Discus tend to jump when spooked.
Have the person you are buying Discus from fill the bucket about half way. You want enough water and oxygen in the bucket to survive the road trip. You also do not want the bucket so heavy you cant carry it up several flights of stairs.
When you get home instead of dumping the Discus and water into your tank, take the following steps:
- Find a giant plastic cup, like the ones you get when you buy a super sized meal at a fast food place.
- Every five minutes or so take one cup of water out and dump it in the sink. Then take a cup of water from your tank and but it in the bucket. You want the Discus to start acclimating to the temperature difference and water difference slowly over time.
- After thirty minutes remove enough water to where you can lift the bucket and pour it into your tank. Make sure to not overfill your tank and cause a mess.
How To Strike A Deal
If you know you are going to spend a ton of cash for a breeding pair or a super rare Discus, split the cash with your friend. This way when you are negotiating you can say something like “This is all the money I have” and then you can look to your friend to ask to borrow money, if needed. If you get to borrowing money tell your friend before hand what the game plan is so that he/she acts like they do not want to lend you to much because it was money for something else.
Buying in bulk is another way to get a great deal. When the Discus fry are small you may want to buy the whole batch of fry. Once they get to a quarter or half dollar size the price begins to go way up per Discus. By purchasing the entire batch of fry you can raise them yourself and in the end sell off enough to make your money back. If negotiating gets involved remember to leverage your friend to “borrow” money and get a great deal.
Buying a breeding pair is like buying the goose that lays the golden eggs. Most hobbyist are smart enough not to sell you there prized money maker pair. Unless you have super deep pockets, meaning you have $100’s to spend look for a common breeding pair like Pigeon Blood, Blue Diamonds, Marlboro Reds, etc… You can sell the fry from these all day, not at super high prices but enough to save up some cash for when the super rare breeding pair becomes available.
Make sure that the pair you are buying have fry on them or are guarding eggs. Anyone can put two Discus together in one tank and call them a pair, so make sure to seek proof. One hobbyist I used to buy Discus from kept a picture record book of all the pairs and successful offspring. Plus he always had pairs with fry, I knew he took really great care and time with his Discus and the results spoke for themselves.
Questions For You
Have you purchased Discus from your newspaper classifieds before?
What kind of negotiating techniques do you use to get a great deal?
Do you like buying breeding pairs, batches of fry or individual Discus?