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Royal Red Discus
Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith
Discus
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Symphysodon sp.

Royal Red Discus
Quick Stats:   Royal Red Discus

Family: Cichlidae
Range: South America - Amazon and Rio Negro Regions
Size: Up to 8 inches
Diet: Carnivore
Tank Set-up: Freshwater: Lightly planted, rocks, soft bottom
Tank Conditions: 79-86ºF; pH 6.1-7.5; dH 1-3
Minimum Tank Capacity: 50 gallon
Light: Low
Temperament: Peaceful
Swimming Level: Middle and Bottom
Care Level: Moderate
Reproduction: Egg Layer

The Royal Red Discus has been selectively bred and tank raised for its brilliant red and blue coloration. Vertical black bars are displayed depending upon its mood. The anal and dorsal fins have electric blue and red stripes that add to the appeal of the Royal Red Discus. The overall coloration of Discus will vary depending on mood and overall health of the fish. The Discus has surpassed the Angelfish as the most popular freshwater aquarium fish. Depending on sub-species, the natural range of the Discus extends from the Amazon to the Rio Negro Regions of South America.

The Royal Red Discus requires an advanced level of care due to its feeding habits and water filtration requirements.

Territorial during spawning, this otherwise peaceful fish is among the schooling group, forming a well-defined nuclear family. Becoming slightly territorial when breeding, it is best to breed an established pair, or maintain a group of young Discus and allow them to pair themselves. Warm, soft, slightly acidic water is required for spawning. The pair will clean a flat surface (usually a broad leaf or the side of the aquarium) prior to spawning. The parents must not be removed from the fry; the fry feed on their parents' mucus.

Largely carnivorous, the Royal Red Discus requires freeze-dried bloodworms and tubifex, pellet food designed for Discus, high-quality flake food, and meaty frozen foods.

Ideal tank mates include:

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