The UV sterilizer is a device with an Ultra Violet bulb that destroys pathogens: bacteria, viruses, parasites, algae, …
This system allows you to offer your fish a water in which they live of better quality.
A fish’s immune system is either innate, genetically programmed from birth, or adaptive, i.e. it develops according to the pathogens it encounters.
A UV sterilizer will not make fish more fragile because they are born with an immune system. However, it is true that it will prevent the development of the adaptive immune system.
But do we want to risk making our fish sick by putting them in the presence of pathogens so that they develop their adaptive immune system?… NO.
The majority of breeders and professional importers have systems equipped with UV sterilizers.
This brings us to 2 important points:
- Fish raised with UV sterilizers may not have a developed immune system to resist problems that may be present in tap water, brought in by other fish or plants. These fish are more likely to get sick if you do not have a UV sterilizer.
- If you mix fish from different breeders raised without a UV sterilizer, each fish will have a different immune system and may carry pathogens that it is immune to. Once together, one fish may make the other sick by releasing pathogens into the water that the other fish may not be immune to. A UV sterilizer reduces the risk of contamination by reducing the number of pathogens in the water. It allows the fish to experience a low level of pathogen attack and thus develop an adaptive immune system. If fish are exposed to a high concentration of pathogens without a UV sterilizer, they become ill more easily.
The UV sterilizer is not mandatory but highly recommended.
Moreover, with large fish such as Discus, pollution and waste quickly accumulate in the aquarium favoring the development and multiplication of microbes. All the more reason to have a UV sterilizer.
With a UV sterilizer, the fish live in purer water but not completely sterile, so disease problems are still possible.
It does not replace a good maintenance of your aquarium.