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Reeeally Considering DISCUS - But I Travel a Lot??

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I am thinking of setting up a 55g tank just for discus. I am planning it all out, and I just realized...I am out of town a couple of weekends a month for most of the year. Some trips, I am gone for 5 days.

At what size/age do discus no longer need multiple daily feedings?

Is there a reliable auto feeder?

I can get someone to feed my fish once a day, but more than that would be pressing my luck.
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Suggest you think about getting 5 or 6 - 4" + fish. Getting someone to feed your discus once a day would then be ok - so long as they know how to feed - and not overfeed. That'll work when you're away for up to 5 days. -- Out of town for a couple of weekends a month - shouldn't be a problem. So long as they're fed well the rest of the time. As for water changes - your schedule is ok for that too - time it for when you're away on weekends - 50% wc's 2-3 X a week should be alright. Auto feeder - wouldn't recommend it - near adult discus - over 4" should be ok fed as little as 5 days/per week - not the greatest, but would fit with your schedule.
 

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I have kept discus for many years and I find them no more difficult to keep happy then a neon tetra. The only thing I have found that helps it to keep them in as large a group as you can afford. Often time when there are groups of 4 or less the smallest/weakest fish will begin to get picked on/develop an antisocial personality. Because of theis they are darker in couor, dont grow aswell as the other and in extreme cases can end up parishing.

If you can get some from a local breeder DO IT. you can get more info then you would ever want from them and they might even be raised in your local water conditions which would make things even easier.

Discus are just like any other fish. They like to eat 20 times a day but can go a couple of weeks with out eating and be just fine.

Now if you are getting juveniles and are wanting big ole dinner plate sized fish in a year or so then you wont want to skip feedings at all. Actually it is difficult to get discus over the 6" mark in planted tanks because of the amount of food that is necessary to get them to that size and the amount of water changes required too.

So if you want a 6"+ fish end result then you will either have to buy them smaller and put them in bare bottom tanks and feed them 3-6 times a day 6 month to a year or just purchase them at the 6"+ size, put them in the tank and treat them as you would any other tropical fish feeding once a day, every couple days or three times a week. Whatever works.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I don't care about eventual size, breeding ability, or anything other than that they are healthy and happy. :)

I don't want to get 2.5" juvies and have them starve to death because they only got fed once a day for a few days. ??
 

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If you get the juveniles and feed them a couple of times a week they will be fine. There just like any other tropical fish with regards to feeding. EXCEPT when it comes to growing them out to their full potential.

If you get 2.5" fish and feed them tetra color bits a few times a week they will be fine but they might only get to about 4"-5" (if your super lucky) and could possibly show issues with stunting/deformed shape (nothing you nor I would see as a flaw only in competitions)/larger eye size in relation to the body/the list goes on but they will still be extrememy happy and live for many years.

If you want them to be 8" Goliaths then you would need to feed them at least 3 times a day varying between a few live/animal sourced foods and clean the tank/water every day if not after every feeding in order to not compromise water quality. Not practical for the normal keeper.

So if you want 6" fish as an end result you will more than likely just have to buck up and buy the full grown fish. If you dont mind having fish that are 4"-5" as an end result then you can buy 2.5" juveniles and feed them however you want, just remember, the more when they are young and the better the larger they will eventually be.

I hope this is not confusing. I'm trying to be as specific as I can without having to sit here and type for 2 hours at work. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I can feed 2x a day no problem, while I'm home. But it would be just once a day, and possibly only once every other day, when I'm gone. 3-5 days at a time, a couple times a month.
 

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If you get the juveniles and feed them a couple of times a week they will be fine. There just like any other tropical fish with regards to feeding. EXCEPT when it comes to growing them out to their full potential.

If you get 2.5" fish and feed them tetra color bits a few times a week they will be fine but they might only get to about 4"-5" (if your super lucky) and could possibly show issues with stunting/deformed shape (nothing you nor I would see as a flaw only in competitions)/larger eye size in relation to the body/the list goes on but they will still be extrememy happy and live for many years.

If you want them to be 8" Goliaths then you would need to feed them at least 3 times a day varying between a few live/animal sourced foods and clean the tank/water every day if not after every feeding in order to not compromise water quality. Not practical for the normal keeper.

So if you want 6" fish as an end result you will more than likely just have to buck up and buy the full grown fish. If you dont mind having fish that are 4"-5" as an end result then you can buy 2.5" juveniles and feed them however you want, just remember, the more when they are young and the better the larger they will eventually be.

I hope this is not confusing. I'm trying to be as specific as I can without having to sit here and type for 2 hours at work. :)

+one for above info. Juvenile fish (Discus), with twice a day feedings will in my expierience, result in oblong shaped ,bug eyed,stunted fish.
Go with the Adult fish and don't worry bout feedings for the 3 to 5 days you are gone. Fish will be fine.
 
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