South American Cichlids • Discus and Beefheart

Discussion regarding only South American Cichlid species. (Oscars, Geophagines, Discus, Apistogramma, Green Terrors, Angels, Severums, Pikes, etc.)

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Discus and Beefheart

Postby JordanB8810 » Sun Jun 20, 2010 1:07 pm

My next fish tank I want to set up is going to be an Amazon Biotope. I want to put discus in the tank, but I'm confused about their deitary requirements. On almost all books I've read, websites I've researched, breeders I've asked, and even in the library here on CF the common diet is a mixed diet consisting mainly of beef heart. However, according to Marc Elieson...

"Fishes are unable to utilize fat from warm-blooded animals for energy use. As a result, these fats build up in the liver, and over time will result in degeneration of their liver. For this reason, meat from any warm-blooded animal, and especially beef heart, is bad for your fishes."

So what should be the main dietary supplement for discus if beef heart is not acceptable? And if this is true, how are so many discus "experts" wrong about what to feed them?
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Postby Dutch Dude » Sun Jun 20, 2010 5:03 pm

Hi there,

Beefhear is indeed used a lot for Discus food. It is nutritious contains quit some proteins and is cheap. When people make their own blend with discus heart they cut out the valves, veins, all the fat leaving clean muscle. It is used for over 5 decades as THE food for discus. Only beefheart would be a poor diet and discus also needs vitamins and vegitable matter. Most beefheart blends contain blanched spinage, garlic, paprika powder, freeze dried bloodworms and flakes/grind pellets or even banana. I fed beefheart for two years now without health issues on my domesticated discus. Recently I bought a group of F1 curipera (fry from wild fish) and I discovered they had more dificulties to properly digest the beefheart so I switched to a fish based blend. It contains abouth the same ingredients as the hear blend but heart is replaced with salt water fish like cod and some shrimp in addition. The fish love!

Up until now I bought my fish mix until I discovered the manufacturer used a fresh water fish (pangasius) in his resepi. Since the fish a raw I don't want to take risks with transmitting parasites like tape worms. Marine fish have diferent type of parasites that won't thrive in fresh water species so it is best to use marine fish. I'm still experimenting with the right mix.

Young fish need to be fed heavily to get them to grow properly. Imo young fish need a beefheart blend or a fish based blend to grow. Feeding adults is easier and don't require larger amounts of fish/beefheart blend.

In nature discus feed on algea, shrimp, small fish, insects, insect larvae and even fruits are found in the stomach content of wild fish.

I hope this helps.
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Joined: Thu Sep 14, 2006 4:08 pm
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