Caring for discus can be a challenging task at times. With no specific preference for food, discus fish can be fed on any fish food high in protein; though they are cautious to new food and can even live up to four weeks without accepting any new food.
As this is not healthy especially for the smaller fish, it is advisable to ask what kind of food they were being fed at the time of purchase and preferably purchase the same food. While caring for discus fish, you need to remember that they can be very picky eaters and require more than simple flake fish food.
Feed them a mixture of food and slowly change from one to another. Knowing what to feed them and how often is essential to keep them healthy, colorful and happy.
Blood worms are a favorite with discus and should ideally be given once daily, ensuring they are frozen irradiated worms as they would have less chances of having parasites on them. Any type of fish flake, granules and freeze dried fish food is good as well, though it’s better to stick to a branded one ensuring quality control.
You may need to soak and squeeze the flakes first, as the fish prefer being fed at mid water to bottom levels. Frozen brine shrimps are again a favorite of the discus fish, though they need to be defrosted and rinsed before being fed. These contain minerals and vitamins which enhance the fish color and keep them in good shape. Try avoiding any kind of live food because of the health risks involved.
While caring for discus fish, in case you are not sure how much to feed, take it a thumb rule to feed less than feed more. Allow the discus fish, who are slow eaters to pick and gaze at their food at their own pace. Feed the young fish (approximately 5cm) about 4-5 times daily and older fish (10 cm) about twice daily. The growing fish take in less food during each feeding and need more nutrients. Allow the fish to eat for 2 hrs by feeding them small amounts of food, thereafter siphon away all excess food.
By learning to feed and caring for discus the right way, you will realize that they are not hard to care for, provided you give them what they want, and all they want is fresh water and food!