Clean water is key to keeping happy and healthy Discus. This doesn’t have to do with your water chemistry or reverse osmosis filtration. Just simply a super clean tank with a constant exchange of new fresh clean water for your Discus.
Below we talk about several ways to keep your water clean and how to do it without fancy equipment like reverse osmosis filters.
Frequent Water Changes
One great myth is that you need to change water constantly for Discus. I am calling this out as a myth simply because so many successful breeders range in water changing routines. From as little as 25% three times a week to as much as 100% water changes twice daily!
If we focus on the underlying reason for the water change instead of the frequency you can appreciate the reason for the water change. It is not so much frequency but what the water change itself provides to your Discus over its life time. Clean stable water provides an almost stress free environment by removing waste build up and other harmful toxins.
How Much Water To Change
This is ultimately up to you and your abilities to carry out the water changes. The important thing is to first understand and accept the duties of the frequent water changes. Then do the best you can to provide clean balanced water to your Discus.
The commitment is more important than the volume of water changed. What I mean by this is if you can change 100% twice daily for a week then you give up for a month you cause more harm. If you simply commit to 25% three times a week and do this for several years you provide stable longevity to your Discus.
When To Do A Water Change
The timing of the water change is just as important as the frequency. Discus like all creatures accustom themselves to you and your patterns. Keep a steady pattern and the Discus will look forward to and be prepared for the water change. Provide an unstable and erratic pattern and your Discus may become skittish and bang around the tank during water changes.
What has worked best in the past for myself is to time water changes after a major feeding period. This helps in removing any built up waste and left over food that can lead to poor water quality.
Other Factors For Clean Water
Although Discus can be and have been kept in a variety of environments, you may have seen the bare tank. So what’s the deal with the graveless tanks? The idea behind this is to provide the most pristine environment for the Discus. Removing decorations that could cause injury. Removing gravel that would normally hide waste and uneaten food. Creating an environment that is as close to ideal as possible.
Now let me explain what I mean by ideal. Like an athlete who eats a balanced diet of carbs, proteins and fats. The athlete also drinks plenty of clean water and gets plenty of sleep after daily workouts. He/She may or may not enjoy the daily fiber intake or not staying out late at the party drinking beer. The environment the athlete creates and the diet consumed is to provide optimum results and health.
The graveless tanks or bare tanks are not ideal in the sense that it replicates the natural environment of the Discus, but in the sense of providing the ideal conditions for longevity, health and fullest growth potential.
Questions For You
How often do you do water changes?
Do you have a graveless or bare tank for you Discus?
What volume of water did you decide to change?