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Scientific Name:

Symphysodon spp.

Common Name:

Discus (Flatfish)


Amazon River Basin

Adult Size:

6in - 9in


No distinct differences, Males may show fin extension and may be larger than females in general.


Black Water, White Water, throughout the Amazon River


4.0 - 7.0


82F - 86F


Considered difficult by most. They typically like to choose their own mate, but forced pairing can be accomplished. The pair will clean a vertical site to lay their eggs. Water conditions should be warm (82F) and soft. The pair will lay eggs and both will care for the eggs. Hatching will occur 48 - 72 hrs after hatching. They fry will become free swimming at another 48 hrs. They will then attach to the sides of the parents and eat from the sides of them (Discus Milk).

Tank Mate(s):

Other discus are the best suggestion, otherwise fish with similar temperament. Tetras and Corydoras can be a good addition to the discus tank.

Not as aggressive as most Cichlids. Likes larger groups, with a minimum of 6 to a group. They will hammer out the pecking order within the group. Can be housed with other fish which have the same temperament - Geophagus, Apistogramma, Microgeophagus, etc. The more aggressive Cichlids, even Angelfish (P. scalarae), my out compete the discus for food.



Symphysodon spp.

CAAS Fish Profiles