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Saltwater Power: How to Choose Saltwater Fish for Aquariums

Saltwater Power: How to Choose Saltwater Fish for Aquariums

Aquariums are a good way to spend the time and pass your boredom away. Watching the fish swim in water can...

Aquarium Travels: The Best Aquariums All Over the US

Aquarium Travels: The Best Aquariums All Over the US

Aquariums come in all shapes and sizes. Some aquariums are found in bowl and box configurations. Bowls usually hold a...

Best Choices: How to Pick Fish for your new Aquarium

Best Choices: How to Pick Fish for your new Aquarium

It never is an easy task filling your aquarium with fish. There are a few things you have to remember; you...

Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

Beginners in aquarium cultivation can feel overwhelmed the first time they populate their aquarium. There are a lot of things to...

Marine Life

Saltwater Power: How to Choose Saltwater Fish for Aquariums

Saltwater Power: How to Choose Saltwater Fish for Aquariums

Aquariums are a good way to spend the time and pass your boredom away. Watching the fish swim in water can...

Best Choices: How to Pick Fish for your new Aquarium

Best Choices: How to Pick Fish for your new Aquarium

It never is an easy task filling your aquarium with fish. There are a few things you have to remember; you...

Securing an Investment: Plumbing Aid for Beginner Aquarists

Securing an Investment: Plumbing Aid for Beginner Aquarists

Aquarium maintenance is something that people would rarely do themselves. This is true for people owning saltwater aquariums; if cleaning...

Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

Beginners in aquarium cultivation can feel overwhelmed the first time they populate their aquarium. There are a lot of things to...

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featured8 - Saltwater Power: How to Choose Saltwater Fish for Aquariums

Saltwater Power: How to Choose Saltwater Fish for Aquariums

Aquariums are a good way to spend the time and pass your boredom away. Watching the fish swim in water can be a calming experience; it can also be a pretty good way of letting your stress fly away. Fish come in many shapes and sizes. They also come in different varieties—some fish live in freshwater, while others live in saltwater.

It is tricky to raise saltwater fish simply because they’re fragile. You need to make sure you’re using the right water, among others. Here’s the best saltwater fish for a beginner.

1|The Clownfish

The Ocellaris Clownfish became popular because of the movie ‘Finding Nemo.’ However, it’s still one of the best saltwater fish to begin with. Ask any saltwater enthusiast and they’ll recommend this fish. It’s also a very territorial fish; however, if it marks a territory within a fish tank, it’ll stay in that area, so it’s a space saver. You’ll also receive a pair to mate if you buy two young clownfish at the same shop.

2|The Flame Angelfish

It’s also known by the name Japanese pygmy angelfish. This fish is a popular choice known for its adaptability to captivity. You won’t have a problem putting it with fairly aggressive fish (as it keeps to itself mostly) and will be easy to mate, should you wish to do that. If you’re keeping corals or invertebrates, however, keep this fish away from them; it won’t hesitate to nip at them.

3|Nano Fish

These fish do not need as much space as the above specimens. They can be bred in small aquariums—even 8 or more gallons are good already for them. They are territorial too, but they encroach on small space, making spacing easy. They are easy to feed as well as easy to give life through filtration; one thing you have to look out for is to buy compatible pairs.

4|The Butterfly Fish

Another popular breed, butterflyfish don’t need much space in captivity. When bred and kept in saltwater tanks, they can grow up to six inches. These specimens aren’t as easy to take care of as other species, however; they are fickle, especially when you’re feeding them. They tend to keep to themselves through hiding, so you need to have such spaces for them in your fish tank.

5|The Blue Green Damselfish

Known by its other name—the blue-green reef chromis—this specimen is not as aggressive as other members of its breed are. They can co-exist in a tank with other docile fish as well as invertebrates like corals and clams. This fish is also very easy to take care of in captivity; you can also feed them easily.

info3 - Saltwater Power: How to Choose Saltwater Fish for Aquariums
Infographic by: visual.ly
featured7 - Aquarium Travels: The Best Aquariums All Over the US

Aquarium Travels: The Best Aquariums All Over the US

Aquariums come in all shapes and sizes. Some aquariums are found in bowl and box configurations. Bowls usually hold a small amount of fish while box-shaped aquariums range from small to large ones. When you have these, you only need a filter and some tubes. You finally have your aquarium.

Fish also come in all shapes and sizes and it can be a peaceful experience just watching them swim. However, there are some fish that need special care. These species can be seen swimming in large, specialized aquariums in big places. Here are the best places across the US to see these fish swim.

Aquarium of the Pacific (Long Beach)

It isn’t called a ‘Pacific’ aquarium for nothing. Aside from exotic specimens—chances are they may have some deep-sea dwelling specimens here—it also houses a ‘Shark Lagoon’ as well as programs for ocean preservation and education about marine environments. Tickets here are relatively affordable at a price of somewhere between $15-30.

Audubon Aquarium of America (New Orleans)

Mark this aquarium during your travels. While it’s not majestically magnificent like the other aquariums on this list, it has distinctively re-made itself despite Hurricane Katrina. It isn’t picked as one of the best five aquariums in America for nothing—you have to see the Caribbean reef set to appreciate it. It is also one of the aquariums that stepped up during the Gulf of Mexico spill by enlisting as steward.

Georgia Aquarium (Atlanta)

It holds the distinction of being the biggest in the world. It’s size allows it to hold space for more than 7 million gallons of water as well as the capacity for many specimens. If you haven’t seen beluga whales, bottlenose dolphins, manta rays, and whale sharks, now’s your chance to see them up close. A trip for the family will cost you $70—tickets are $40 for adults and $30 for kids.

The National Aquarium (Baltimore)

The National Aquarium is one of the top five aquariums in the nation and for good reason. It is home to 600 specimens or more and it isn’t just an aquarium; it also houses an aviary made into a miniature rainforest. If you get tired of the fish, you can go up top and take a look at the birds. The tickets here range from $25 to $40.

Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies (Gatlinburg)

It is easy to remember for its name and is one of the reasons why it’s being voted into fan-curated top ten lists. But some of the other reasons is because it has a lot of specimens for its size. It isn’t the largest, but 350 kinds of sea life call it home. A lot of activities—ranging from spending time with an interactive show up to memorable experiences—can be done here.

featured4 - Best Choices: How to Pick Fish for your new Aquarium

Best Choices: How to Pick Fish for your new Aquarium

It never is an easy task filling your aquarium with fish. There are a few things you have to remember; you have to find fish that will fit in your aquarium, whatever size it is. You have to find fish that won’t fight with the specimens that you have in mind. You also have to consider the space available in your aquarium so it doesn’t feel overcrowded.

That’s only a few of the things you’re going to make room for. You can buy them in a store or online, but you’ll have to figure out what kind of fish you need with these tips.

Are they going to get big?

When you buy a fish tank, buy it for the future; know which size your fish will get. Freshwater fish usually are small, but some species grow big; at the same time, most saltwater fish grow big but there are specimens that remain small. Buy for your fish tank and you’ll have less problems trying to fit everyone in your fish tank.

Will they feed on others or are they aggressive?

You should have a basic idea of your fish breeds. Some of them may be territorial but that doesn’t mean they’re aggressive; they might just prefer a specific part of your fish tank. Some are not territorial, but they become aggressive and see other fish as food or enemies. If you have these specimens, learn to separate them from the rest of the group.

Will they be territorial?

Some fish get really picky about their space. These fish are the ones you should avoid putting into a shared tank; they’ll do everything they can to avoid others encroaching on their territory. Some fish will try to fight with other fish. You’re lucky, however, if you get a species that can co-exist with others even with their space invaded. Try to find those kinds of specimens.

Are they natural herbivores?

There are fish that live off of fish feeds and there are others who prefer to eat algae. There are also the fish breeds that prefer to nibble off live seaweeds. If you see this kind of behavior with your fish, you should try to keep them together with fresh plants. Avoid keeping them with invertebrates though! That is a recipe for disaster, especially if you have a saltwater aquarium.

Have they been raised in captivity or not?

When you buy fish from the pet store, you’ll be told about the specifics of their breeding; whether they bred in-store or bought from a supplier and caught in the wild. Those bred in captivity are good for beginners, but be ready if you buy those captured in the wild; they might prove to be a handful.

featured10 - Securing an Investment: Plumbing Aid for Beginner Aquarists

Securing an Investment: Plumbing Aid for Beginner Aquarists

Aquarium maintenance is something that people would rarely do themselves. This is true for people owning saltwater aquariums; if cleaning normal, freshwater aquariums is hard enough, saltwater aquariums deal with different systems. If you do just one thing wrong, you’re putting your entire aquarium at risk.

It’s not that hard to do advanced plumbing on your aquarium. If you follow a few of these tips, you can save money by doing the plumbing yourself. This article is a guest post written by Matt Highsmith. Matt owns a Simi Valley plumbing company by day and saltwater aquarium enthusiast in his spare time. He knows a bit about plumbing so please take his advice here is you are doing some plumbing on your tank.

Testing for Safety

When you’re testing your aquarium plumbing, you should do so under normal conditions. Observe the plumbing for seven days without the fish. Once you place the fish, be sure of its quality. You can also use dyes in your aquarium to trace leaks—a good dye to use would be ones used on food.

Testing for Corners

If you’re building plumbing, make it a point to cut as much corners as possible. A good tip is to avoid making elbows amounting up to 90 degrees. Other alternatives you have is to create one that’s using a flexible hose called a spa-flex PVC or two elbows amounting to 45-degrees.

Testing for Adhesives

If you’re putting plumbing together with adhesives, make plans to avoid wedging or bending it in awkward angles. It makes the glue stick better if you put it together in a natural way. The vertical runs would adhere stronger if you make it where they only need strapping together to bond faster.

Don’t Rely on restrictions

It never is a good idea to keep restrictions on your plumbing. If you want to limit your pump’s output, don’t do it by throttling; your pump will usually get clogged up with debris like algae and, by attraction, snails. Don’t make your pump more restricted than it naturally would be.

Don’t make rigid standpipes

Popular brands of standpipes include Durso and Stockman. These are great if you want your overflows quieted down and your drains the same way too. Don’t use glue on these—at all—or you’ll restrict yourself from making periodical tinkering when you need to.

Don’t scrimp on PVC

PVC pipes are a standard when making aquarium plumbing. It is a cheap material to use when you’re keeping a home aquarium. If you want to keep up a working setup, PVC pipes are built to stand the test of temperatures—whether your water supply grows too cold or too hot, it will handle it.

Having an aquarium that works as it should is a great way to ease stress and enjoy fish. At the same time, you’re also trained to contribute to the environment through keeping your fish alive and well-fed.

featured6 - Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

Beginners in aquarium cultivation can feel overwhelmed the first time they populate their aquarium. There are a lot of things to consider like what fish you’re going to get; what size of aquarium would be best for them; and whether you’re going to raise saltwater fish along with living sea flora or freshwater fish with plastic flora.

The most important ones concern those creatures that will be living in your aquarium. Here are a few tips on how you can raise fish without worry.

Look for fish that are healthy and easy to raise

12 - Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

Looking for the first fish to populate that tank? Choose fish specimens that are strong and easy to raise. You can do this by picking them based on how they look and on recommendations of your trusted pet shop attendant. It’s easy to see which fish to avoid—they float dead in the tank, may show signs of sickness, or have broken fins.

Find fish that would get along easily

11 - Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

It’s pretty easy to select your fish in the tank. You need to find breeds that get along well; these fish don’t have to be of the same specimens. You can do this with the help of the attendant at the pet store. Freshwater breeds will always fit with each other; be aware that some fish are also small at the onset and will grow big as they stay in your aquarium. Buy for size.

Build a community

13 - Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

One way of creating a good fish tank that’s easy on the eyes is to create a ‘community tank.’ This is easily done by selecting specimens that have the same appetite, are docile and get along well with each other, and have the same water requirements. It is important to note that some species are territorial, so you should avoid that.

Avoid putting in upsetters to the environment

14 - Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

You can see fish which you can’t put in the aquarium; they usually stand alone, set aside in a separate tank, and you can see them all by their lonesome in an aquarium at the shop. Avoid buying this fish for your community tank. These fish are usually aggressive or mark their own territory. They are not aggressive but may become so when guarding their own space.

Avoid breeding in a community tank

15 - Pick the Right Fish for your Aquarium with these tips

If you plan to buy a pair of fish to breed, you should separate them from your community. A mated pair may become unruly or territorially aggressive against other fish. Their young is also an added problem—small fish tend to become food for the other fish. If you want to mate a pair, buy a breeding tank and separate them from the community.

featured3 - Born in Captivity: The Best Saltwater Fish to Raise in Captivity

Born in Captivity: The Best Saltwater Fish to Raise in Captivity

Having a saltwater aquarium requires you to keep fish which could be any of three choices; caught in the wild or fish that were caught on a fishing trip or dive; tank-raised ones or those bought from a store that sells already-captive fish; or those that were born and raised in captivity. From a breeder’s standpoint, those that were captive from the start are easier to raise.

While there are specimens that you can only get from catching in open dives in the sea, here are a few breeds popular with people who keep saltwater aquariums.

The Cardinalfish

1 - Born in Captivity: The Best Saltwater Fish to Raise in Captivity

Known for their different families—the longfin, Kaudern’s cardinal, and the ones from Banggai—the cardinalfish is also one of the species that are on the verge of extinction due to over-hunting, notably the Banggai cardinalfish. Most owners and sellers, however, counter this by breeding pairs in captivity; it’s prized for its elegant black, white, and silver coloration.

The Royal Blue Tang

2 - Born in Captivity: The Best Saltwater Fish to Raise in Captivity

This is another fish that became more popular after ‘Finding Nemo’ came out. The Royal Blue Tang is a specimen that lent its appearance to the character Dory. These fish are also great pets in that they leave corals and anemone alone, but you’ll have to feed them live krill or algae. They are known for their distinctive yellow tail and the blue-black pattern on their body.

The Wrasse

3 - Born in Captivity: The Best Saltwater Fish to Raise in Captivity

They are small and they feature a design that some collectors call ‘psychedelic.’ They also play the role of ‘cleaner’ to most of their tank mates, but that also means your invertebrates should watch it lest they find themselves on the Wrasse’s list of food. Reefs are also a nice addition to a tank with Wrasse, as it is where they stay in most of the time in the wild.

The Seahorse

4 - Born in Captivity: The Best Saltwater Fish to Raise in Captivity

These fish are famous because of two characteristics—tanks with seahorses are most attractive and they can also be quite tricky to raise. When you import them, they could die from stress; in a tank, they can succumb to even the tiniest hint of diseases. Be ready to feed them often and to care for them from start to finish, as they are pretty finicky.

The Royal Gramma

5 - Born in Captivity: The Best Saltwater Fish to Raise in Captivity

It’s hard not to spot a Gramma in a saltwater fish tank as they have a unique coloaration—they have a purple body and a yellow tail. These fish don’t hog a lot of fish and are also great additions to a community tank. It’s also famous as one of the fish in the dentist’s tank in ‘Finding Nemo.’

When you’re strapped for choices, these five are outstanding picks for an aquarium with diversity. However, you can also mix and match your personal choices with these recommendations.

featured2 - Change is Permanent: How to Turn Freshwater Aquariums to Saltwater

Change is Permanent: How to Turn Freshwater Aquariums to Saltwater

An aquarium is an investment toward keeping your days stress free. Sitting back, relaxing, and watching fish swim in carefree indulgence can be a very Zen activity; keeping them, having them breed, and making sure their needs are provided for is not a Zen activity. The other side of keeping an aquarium has you keeping them well-fed and fresh.

From misconceptions to things you need to know, here is how you can convert your freshwater aquarium to a saltwater one.

Your Aquarium

It’s pretty easy to choose the space for a saltwater tank. Any size of aquarium will do, so long as you know what size it is for your fish. You should just remember to keep the aquarium free of any type of chemicals that may do harm to your choice of fish.

Filtration units

As you clean up your old aquarium, you may notice some left-overs from the freshwater state it was in. You should clean it thoroughly, but don’t worry too much; saltwater aquariums actually benefit from freshwater bacteria, that is, if you’re replacing freshwater with saltwater.

Old tubing and materials

If you have leftover materials from your freshwater aquarium, you can use them in the saltwater aquarium without any worry. Remember to clean them first. Running water will already do the trick for you; just clear them of any residue that will harm the saltwater habitat.

Ornaments, decor

You should be careful forgetting to remove the plastic decor in a saltwater tank. These could easily become fish food for your saltwater pets, but they can easily harm your new tank inhabitants. You should only use live or fake corals as well as rocks in your saltwater aquarium.

Lighting

If you have an old lighting unit from your freshwater aquarium, you can use in your repurposed saltwater tank. There are other light bulbs you can use but a fluorescent light is fine.

It’s not too hard and complicated to repurpose your tank. If you think you’re ready for a saltwater configuration already, begin the change and make sure you’re up to the challenges brought by saltwater specimens.

featured1 - The Better Water: Choosing between Saltwater and Freshwater Aquariums

The Better Water: Choosing between Saltwater and Freshwater Aquariums

So you’ve finally decided to start an aquarium. It could be for a number of reasons, but whatever your motivation is, there’s a question to answer—will you be having a saltwater aquarium or a freshwater aquarium?

There definitely are changes between the aquariums. The most obvious would be the fish you can keep in them. In a saltwater aquarium, you can have fish living in the sea. The same is not true for the freshwater aquarium, which should only be populated with fish living in freshwater.

Here are some tips on how you can decide which is easier to cultivate between the two.

Freshwater aquariums are easier to cultivate

If you want to start a hobby in aquariums, the easier choice is to start with freshwater aquariums. It’s a good introduction to the world of rearing fish specimens and maintaining an aquarium. They are also easier to clean and the water is simpler to replace than saltwater.

Freshwater tanks are also more affordable

Between saltwater and freshwater aquariums, the cheaper choice is the latter. Freshwater aquariums can be small and you won’t have a hard time looking for fish for it. There is a lot that goes into saltwater aquarium maintenance that are too complicated for someone starting with aquariums.

Saltwater tanks are for people who are hands-on

While some people see the carefree maintenance of a freshwater tank a boon, some people would prefer the meticulous process of keeping a saltwater aquarium. With specimens found in a saltwater aquarium come live food, filtration, and pH levels that need to be balanced.

Saltwater aquariums have vibrant species

There is something that saltwater tanks have over freshwater aquariums—they are built to impress. The fish found in saltwater aquariums are slightly more vibrant than their freshwater counterparts. You better take care of them, though, as they are also more fragile.

Freshwater tanks are popular for being low maintenance

With freshwater tanks, you simply do not have to worry about live food and pH balances; fish in freshwater aquariums can be left to their own devices. It’s also easier to populate and create the habitat in a freshwater aquarium.

info1 - The Better Water: Choosing between Saltwater and Freshwater Aquariums
Infographic by: homeaquaria.com