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Caring for Fish and Aquariums
Having an aquarium is a popular hobby today by many pet owners and has been for hundreds of years. It is believed that keeping of fish began with the Chinese breeding goldfish. While this hobby is quite easy, it does require planning and some minor work. Compared to the so many types of pet’s homes available today, aquariums do not need much daily attention. Having the proper equipment for an aquarium and adopting a maintenance schedule for keeping the tank clean are the two most important things in keeping fish healthy.
The very first think you must do when setting up an aquarium what type of fish you want. There are different kinds that all require different care, space, conditions and equipment. If you buy equipment before deciding what type of fish you want, you may end up with unusable or inappropriate equipment or space that is insufficient.
After choosing the type of fish you want, you must then decide what you would like in an aquarium. A good rule of thumb to remember is that the bigger the aquarium, the less maintenance it will need and the more fish it can hold. If this is your first aquarium, it is a good idea to consider a 20-30 gallon aquarium. When choosing an aquarium, make sure to get a stand and hood that matches the tank’s footprint. Most hoods have lighting built in them, but it not; you will need to buy a light separately. It also important to purchase a heater for the aquarium too.
The last big item for an aquarium is the filtration system. There are three different kinds of filters for an aquarium: mechanical, biological and chemical. It is best to have a combination of mechanical and biological in the aquarium. Some people believe that chemical filtration is needed and others feel it is just unnecessary and only needed for short term if you have a problem with the water and are trying to correct it. One of the most important ways to keep fish healthy is by changing the water regularly to remove waste byproducts and contaminants.
Light can be artificial or natural in an aquarium, but mandatory for proper maintenance. Twelve hours of light is optimum per day. Fish need light so they can see, reproduce and feed. It also has an effect on a fish’s color. Dull illumination is enough for most fish and artificial light can be used to supplement natural light or it can be used as the primary light source. For plant growth control and plankton and algae suppression, artificial light only needs to be used.
For a freshwater aquarium, the best temperature will vary among different species, but will range between 74 and 78 degrees for most fish. Higher temperatures tend to have increased bacteria and a lower count of dissolved oxygen. A sudden change in temperature tends to cause shock in fish and is often times followed by disease.
A heater for an aquarium should have an adjustment for controlling the temperature and should be built to fasten on to the outside of the aquarium. The correct wage can be calculated by multiplying 5 with the number of gallons of the tank. Because heaters are not made in multiples of five, buy one that comes closest to what you calculated. Every aquarium needs to have a thermometer, either fixed or floating inside. Today, there are strip thermometers that stick to the outside and change colors along with the change in temperature.
Tips for caring for fish and aquariums
1. Keep the fish healthy and happy
2. Work to prevent disease outbreaks
3. Provide a varied but good and balanced diet
4. Change the water regularly to maintain the quality of the water
5. Keep stress in the fish low to avoid disease
6. Use a filtration system
7. Ensure sufficient oxygen
8. Use the proper decorations for an aquarium, include hiding places or any other special need pieces
9. Do not mix aggressive fish with nonaggressive fish
10. Do not over feed the fish
11. Check on fish daily
12. Watch fish to make sure they are active, easily move through the water and their fins are pointed upwards
13. Never used chemicals on the tank for cleaning
14. Keep water temperature consistent