Preparing Discus To Show
For many who have not shown discus before the very thought of it can be somewhat daunting. What follows will hopefully answer most of the questions many newcomers have. It may also serve as a useful reminder to the more seasoned at showing discus.
Now is a good time to start the process off. Start by taking a look at your discus and making a note of those that may make show discus on android tv box. At the same time pick out possible substitutes, just in case one of your selected discus fish cannot be shown for some reason. Sometimes the substitute turns out to be the better show fish!
At a show the arena where the discus are on display it is usually very busy with lots of visitors looking into tanks and taking photographs. After all it wouldn’t be a Discus Show if people were not there to see the discus!
For a Discus to be taken from its own, usually peaceful, tank and be put into a tank on its own and have all this attention can cause it to become a little reclusive. So between now and the show we must accustom our discus to all this hustle and bustle.
Now is the time also to consider the discus diet. Without getting into the technicalities of colour enhancing discus, many foods contain naturally occurring colour enhancements, including such things as paprika and spirulina. There is no point feeding our pale coloured, yellow based discus a diet that contains red colour enhancements, like paprika, unless we want them to turn orange! As the colour of the fish is taken into account during judging this will have an adverse effect on the score the discus fish may otherwise obtain.
A little research can pay dividends where the colour of our fish are concerned, take a look at this thread on the BIDKA Forum Colour Enhancement. If you are planning on showing more than one fish, and they have different base colour’s, then having more than one tank available comes in really handy. For example the blue based discus could be in one tank and your red and brown based discus in another. This way their diet can be appropriately tailored to give them the very best chance of showing off their glorious colours. It is important to stress that only naturally occurring foodstuffs should be used.
It is also important that we give full consideration to the discus health. The discus should be full of life, have vibrant colours and clear bright eyes. I mentioned earlier about the hustle and bustle at a discus show, when we are feeding our discus, don’t do it gently and quietly. Open the tank covers with a flourish, put the food in the tank with a splash or even hold the food in your hand and put your hand in the tank. Get the fish used to the crashes and bangs that are inevitable during a discus show. In many cases in a very short period of time the discus will associate all the clatter and banging as the dinner gong! They could even be eating out of your hand in a matter of days.
When you are doing your tank maintenance this another opportunity to get your discus used to disturbances. Most of the time when I am vacuuming the bottom of the tank I am having to move the discus out of the way with my hand or the hose. It is important not to try and do things not to upset the discus, almost the exact opposite! I am not suggesting you bang the tanks like a set of drums! But don’t treat them like they are fragile, discus are remarkably robust and sturdy fish, and despite their reputation for being delicate, they are not! They very soon adapt to your ways.
When you wipe the tank walls down, if the discus fish are in the way, move them gently but firmly with your hand. Don’t be too gentle either when wiping the walls down, again this will accustom the discus to some disruption.
Having a tank of around 60 litres, which is the size of the show tanks, available will mean you can start to get the discus used to being in tanks on their own. Many people will setup one or two tanks of this size in the busiest part of their house and every few days one of the potential show discus will be put into these tanks. This way the discus gets used to being moved and to being in amongst the hustle and bustle.
Having one of your larger tanks in an area of high traffic where your potential show fish can be housed will also get them used to the comings and goings that take place at a show.
And now would be a good time to start getting our discus used to being photographed. There are some very good tips on how to photograph fish generally on the forum here Photographing Discus Fish
During the weeks leading up to the show start to get your water parameters similar to those that will be present at the show. For the British Discus Show the water parameters will be:
- Conductivity of 190 to 210 micro-siemens or a TDS of around 100
- Ph of 6.8 to 7
- Temperature of 29C plus or minuus 1C or 84f plus or minus 2f.
In the last few weeks leading up to the show the discus should be fed high quality foods that help to condition it fully. There are too many foods to list here but high quality granular food, white worms (frozen or fresh), brandling worms (sometimes called red wrigglers), mussels and mysis shrimp are all good foods to consider. There is a host of advice and discussion on foods and feeding on the forum here Diet and Nutrition.
Three days before the show all feeding should stop. An adult discus can safely go for many days without being fed and come to no harm at all. They will not be fed at the show and having been purged for three days prior to it will mean there is less waste in the show tank, which will mean the water quality will remain that much higher. Remember each tank will be individually filtered and will be fitted with a new piece of poly filter to remove any ammonia.
The above is intended to give you some ideas on how to prepare your discus to show them and also to assess how they might react when put into this rather strange environment for them at the show. Some discus strains mark easily when being netted so this must be taken into consideration. Strains such as Blue Diamonds and Ocean Greens will show net marks. When I move these fish I don’t use a net preferring to use my hands.
These tips and hints won’t guarantee success, they are intended to help to get your discus used to what goes on at a show. Hopefully your discus will strut it’s stuff and be the star of the show!