Moving Discus Eggs

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Fish Herder
May 27, 2009
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For some reason my paired Discus parents have decided that once their eggs hatch that the fry should now all be eaten. They started doing this eating on the 4th round of parenting. On the 1st to 3rd round the fry would attach to their bodies to eat the slime coat but subsequently get lost in the community tank.

I have therefore adamantly decided that when the 6th round of fertilised eggs are deposited I intend to move them to a bowl with oxygen supply, to rear artificially with a food I am told is highly successful in getting the fry to eat.

Some questions I have though are how do I safely remove the eggs from the surface that they will be attached to? I have a turkey baster to hand so I'm guessing that is the only tentative way I can remove the eggs without damage? The eggs will most likely be deposited on the vertical piping immediately above the strainer of an external filters inlet pipe.

Additionally, breeders are often advised to use methylene blue to stop the eggs from acquiring fungus and bacteria. Does anybody know the recommended dose for methylene blue for a 500ml bowl of water?

Many thanks.


Fish Guru
Jan 26, 2008
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Perth, WA
The reason discus, angelfish and many other cichlids eat their eggs or young is because people artificially rear them. This has been going on for years with Jack Wattley doing it in America and every discus breeder in Asia doing it too. They remove the eggs and grow the young up without their parents. Subsequently, the babies never get parental care and don't learn anything from their parents. When the babies grow up and mature, they eat their eggs and or young because they don't know what to do.

Most cichlids do eventually work it out and stop eating their eggs or young. But it can take 6 or more attempts before they work it out. If they continue to eat the eggs and young after that time, a lot of people separate the pair and try them with new partners. This can sometimes work because it might be the male or the female that is eating them and the other partner is trying to look after them.

Disturbances (water changes, cleaning, people, etc) in the tank can cause them to eat the eggs or young. Incorrect tank mates or lack of tank mates can cause it too.

As for moving the eggs, you leave the eggs on whatever they were laid on, and move that item into a rearing tank. The eggs must remain underwater at all times. However, I don't recommend people artificially rear cichlids because it screws them up and creates fish that don't know how to look after their young.

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