What And How Much To Feed Discus?

Discus are excellent aquarium fish that have gained wide popularity in our country. When buying pets, everyone asks the question: “How to feed discus fish?” Discus food must be combined, tested and processed (live food). Pet stores also sell dry discus food that can be used to feed fish. These are omnivorous fish that can be fed 2-3 times a day in such portions that they eat them in 5-10 minutes. As you know, feed residues quickly decompose, increasing the concentration of ammonia in the water. Discus have a very small mouth, so the food must be chopped up. Discus take food in the middle or lower layers of the water, although some pets are ready to accept food from a person’s hand.

Scientist R. Geisler, who studied Symphysodon aequifasciatus fish, found that these discus feed on mosquito larvae, small freshwater shrimps, fly larvae, small worms, white mosquito larvae, detritus. In South American waters, the soil is often covered with leaves of tropical plants that utilize bacteria and fungi. In the process of decomposition, microorganisms are formed, which also feed on fish. Open water is home to insect larvae, worms and freshwater shrimp. Discus are looking for food in detritus, digging soil, raising silt, swallowing it along with food. Aquarium representatives of this species do not dig in the ground.

Discus Foods In Nature

discus fish food

The Amazon basin is rich in different types of mosquitoes. Their larvae are almost the main food of discus. The larvae of the mosquito called Chironomus gigas are 2 times larger than the bloodworm. It is found in the freshwater bodies of our latitudes. In the Amazon and its tributaries, crustaceans in the form of shrimps are often found, but some types of shrimp are very large, so these fish do not eat them.

During dry periods, discus fish spend a lot of time looking for suitable food. Sometimes they are forced to starve. When the rainy season comes, the water in the rivers rises, the food becomes much larger, and adult fish and young animals can provide themselves with adequate food. Therefore, the spawning period of these fish is directly related to the rainy season. It is believed that aquarium discus is unpretentious fish, they can eat many types of food in captivity. But like other types of fish, will not tolerate a monotonous diet. If the fish abruptly refused food, there are three options for the answer – did not like it, does not fit, or the pets got sick.

Nutrition Rules For Discus


In order for the discus to eat properly, it should be given alternately live, frozen, dry food, and “mixes”. Each food contains the right amount of useful elements that have a beneficial effect on the health of the fish, saturate the color of the scales. The main diet of an aquarium discus should be a combination of all types of food.

Read Also: Feeding Aquarium Fish – How Many Times A Day Should Aquarium Fish To Be Fed

Live Food

Live food – the most common are bloodworms and tubifex. Discus are members of the Cichlid family, as you know, cichlids do not eat such food, it disrupts the work of the digestive system. However, discus can tolerate it if given correctly. And the fry of these fish do not rise without protein food. Frozen bloodworms are processed food, but there are also pitfalls. Some breeders dip bloodworms in formalin, potassium permanganate, or methylene blue to sterilize their feed. Any chemistry is also harmful to fish. What to do? Bloodworms can be washed well, then frozen. So it does less harm. But the pipe maker cannot be frozen, only rinsed. Food from our reservoirs can be dangerous for these fish.

Minced Food

Minced food is a delicacy for your pets. Despite the fact that cichlids cannot be fed with meat from warm-blooded animals, discus are carried in the form of minced meat. The recipe for this “dish” is simple: a veal heart cleared of veins and fat (slightly more than half of the heart), squid meat, fresh frozen shrimp are mixed in equal proportions. All ingredients are passed through a meat grinder, rolled out in the form of a cake, and placed in the freezer. Such minced meat can be supplemented with fortified discus additives, or freshly squeezed carrot juice. You can also add chopped lettuce, dandelion, spinach to the mixture. The inner shell of the Undevit vitamin complex (white part) is crushed and added to the feed. Vitamin supplements from Tetra and Sera are best suited.

Frozen Food

Frozen food for discus – in the refrigerators of pet stores you can find many varieties of “frozen”, which are the same minced meat, but prepared using a special technology. You can choose whether to make minced meat yourself, or buy it. Also, as frozen food, discus can be given daphnia, cyclops, bloodworms, adult brine shrimp. There is one drawback – frozen food before serving on the counter could defrost and freeze back many times, spoiling its quality. Buy “freeze” from trusted sellers.

Dry Food

Dry food for these fish are specialized types of food that are made according to a special recipe at the factory. Choose any popular brand, it is important that it is also tested. Dry food contains a complex of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates and proteins that fish need. But often such food cannot be served to fish, they quickly get used to it, and it can harm the functioning of the digestive system.

Nutritious Minced Meat Recipe For Fish

Ingredients: veal or beef heart, fresh-frozen shrimp, fillet of lean sea fish (you can use sea bass), peeled squid, sea mix of octopus meat, mussels, lettuce or spinach, parsley, spirulina. You can add some dry discus food to the mixture, which saturates the food with useful microelements and vitamins. Half of the beef heart is cleaned of veins and fat, mixed in proportions of 1/3 part of all other ingredients, passed through a meat grinder. The resulting minced meat can be packed in a plastic bag and left in the freezer.

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