I am happy to be part of the 6th CAF Grow Out Contest. I have been a fish keeper for many years, and got into Discus around 2011. I started out with about 5 discus and of course, like many of us fish enthusiasts continued to get more and bigger tanks! Over the more recent years my discus have all come from Rick at CAF, and for good reason!
My approach to the g/o contest may seem somewhat unorthodox, in the sense that the fish are not in a BB tank, but rather I have put them in my 120g show tank, which has gravel, plants (fake) and rock (also fake). I understand this runs some risk due to increased difficulty in keeping it clean, but that is a risk I am willing to take at this time. Of course, if I sense things are not going well, I may need to change my approach. I think it will be interesting to see how it goes using this method opposed to the BB approach.
The g/o group are in the tank with other discus that I recently got from Rick as well. These are: classic leopard, blue snakeskin (which by the way Rick, I think are going to be my fav!), white pigeon, rose red, golden checkerboard, and calico.
Upon introduction to the new tank, understandably the fish were freaked out and huddling in the corner of the tank. These fish come from BB tanks. They just spent the better part of the day traveling (by car, plane and car again) to get to their new home. Then they have been placed in a tank with all this stuff! Talking about sensory overload! I had to trust they would eventually relax and start to begin to investigate their new surroundings. They did! One thing I have learnt in dealing with Discus, well fish keeping, is patience. Interestingly, it seems the little g/o guys were the bravest of the bunch! These little guys are the youngest/smallest discus I have ever had and that is very cool. They are a cute little bunch! In fact my wife said it would be great if they stayed that size! Seems I will have to explain the goal of the g/o contest!
I am running a 25 g sump with K1 media. The tank was well established/cycled in advance. I had some mbunas in there, which I had for quite a long time, and of course have now been removed. I will be feeding a mix of Hikari Bloodworms and of course the CAF Blackworms! My debate is to also throw in some of my beef heart meal, however this does tend to increase tank dirtiness, so likely will not go there. I plan on doing weekly water changes, which has been my usual routine.
I am looking forward to the next months as the g/o group grow and change in colour. I really hope they are digging their new home, as much as I am enjoying looking after them. Good luck to fellow contestants! Cheers, Simon