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Aquarium Articles

Home Aquarium: Your Home Reef Aquarium

Posted by Oze Parrot on 6th February 2006

After exploring the various types of Aquariums that are available, should you elect to establish a Reef Aquarium then you will have chosen what is probably the most complex type of Home Aquarium to maintain.

Reef Aquariums are full of corals and anemones as well as a selection of reef fish. You will have to select your reef fish wisely as some fish will be eaten by the anemones. Clownfish will coexist quite happily with anemones.

Home AquariumAnemones are very delicate types of plants of which there are many varieties. I will deal more thoroughly with anemones in a future article

A well established Home Reef Aquarium would be one of the most captivating features, that you could ever choose to grace your home or office. By incorporating a special set of lights you will ensure that your corals and anemones are going to look stunning and remain healthy.

Also include the correct type of fish in your Home Reef Aquarium and make sure that you avoid bottom feeders such as shrimps and crabs.
Other types of fish to avoid keeping with anemones are the different kinds of puffer fish, as they are likely to be eaten even though they do sting.

It is not advisable to keep crabs or shrimps, as they like to eat and pick away at the reef life.

After making a selection of marine life that you want to keep in your Home Reef Aquarium, you then have to provide the proper environment in which the creatures will happily exist. You have to ensure that the PH, salt and temperature levels are suitable for the inhabitants of your Reef Aquarium.

If the conditions are not what the Reef requires, then it will die. If taken care of properly then your Reef will grow into a beautiful feature and look absolutely stunning.

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Home Aquarium-Fish Tank Pump

Posted by Oze Parrot on 5th February 2006

A Fish Tank Pump comprises of a low voltage, electric air compressor. The unit is externally located and designed to deliver a steady air flow into your fish tank through a connecting tube.

The benefits of installing a Fish Tank Pump in your Home Aquarium are: the release of underwater air creates a larger surface area which will provide, an increased supply of oxygen for your fish, and also, an added visual attraction for your fish tank.

Home AquariumA Pump for your Home Aquarium is by no means a necessity, however it is most desirable, as it will help to keep your fish contented, by providing added oxygen. Creating air bubbles in your fish tank provides you and your visitors with a relaxing and never ending visual display.

The air supply tube is generally connected to an attractive feature such as, a small statue of a diver, a miniature treasure chest that opens and closes periodically to release the air bubbles, or a series of perforated rocks that will create a multitude of air bubbles flowing from the bottom of your tank.

Contact your local Aquarium supplier and you will find that there are a vast range of novelty exhaust figures that you can choose from.

If you are keeping fish, such as cichlids, you will find that they are pretty fussy about the contents of the tank and will rearrange ornaments and objects to suit themselves. It may not be advisable to introduce an Aquarium Pump if you are keeping this type of fish.

When purchasing a Fish Tank Pump for your Home Aquarium make sure that you get everything that you need to go with it, the hose, the exhaust statue, not to mention a free plug socket. Aquariums use a lot of electricity and you may think that it does not matter but this will of course add to your electric bill.

The exhaust statue or figure that you are using to release the airflow into your fish tank needs to be maintained to prevent any blockages.
Just give it a clean ever few weeks, in a separate bowl of your fish tank water, and this will prevent the build up of residue that can cause blockages in your air outlet.

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Home Aquarium Plants

Posted by Oze Parrot on 31st January 2006

Aquarium Plants are not crucial when it comes to setting up a Home Aquarium but they do help to add eye catching features to your fish tank. A tank full of fish or amphibians can be quite boring so the plants are there to spruce things up a little bit, as well as to provide a recreational facility for your fish.

Home AquariumYou don’t need to put Plants in a tank that has bigger fish, such as cichlids, in it, as they will just remove any foliage because they don’t like a lot of greenery in their tank, they like it rather rocky. When decorating an Aquarium that is going to be occupied by smaller fish such as tetras and guppy’s, then Plants are essential as these types of fish like to have a lot of foliage to swim amongst.

You can choose from a variety of Home Aquarium Plants that are either bushy, or slim like trees, as well as a choice of reeds and grasses; they are there for the fish to hide in and to create the effect of a natural habitat for them.

Some fish prefer to live among reefs while others are happier to cavort in reeds and plants, so their habitats need to be imitated in your Home Aquarium.

The life expectancy of your fish can be greatly increased by choosing their surrounds carefully; if they have enough room to move around and the aquarium is set up like their natural environment, then this will keep the fish happy and contented.

When your fish are happy they eat and stay alive; an unhappy fish will have a poor appetite and eventually it will die.

Home Aquarium Plants can be used for decorative purposes as well as for helping to keep your fish healthy. Plants are there to help your fish survive in their new home, if the fish are unhappy it affects the way that ithey live and feed. This in turn can affect whether the fish will survive or not.

If you elect to keep small fish then make the effort and spend a little more to get the best plants for your fish in order to keep them contented, if you choose to keep larger fish don’t bother so much about the foliage.

Plants can be also used for decorative purposes. Arranging the plants in an artistic fashion can make all the difference to the visual presentation of your Home Aquarium.

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Home Aquarium Ornaments

Posted by Oze Parrot on 30th January 2006

Home Aquarium Ornaments are not there just for the fish to play with, they are there to provide you with a decorative fish tank, as well as to secure a sanctuary for the smaller fish.. There are various kinds of Ornaments that you can choose from, big or small, traditional or caricature, simple or even complicated. There are thousands of different Ornaments that you can buy in stores or you can make your own, if you are so inclined.

Home AquariumOrnaments are not recommended in all Home Aquariums as some fish don’t like them, I know for a fact that Oscars don’t take well to any type of ornament or plants in their environment. Certain types of fish however, do need Ornamental objects in their tanks to live in or to hide themselves from larger fish that may also live in the same tank.

Traditional ornaments are models of castles or ships which provide security for the smaller fish as they can completely avoid the bigger fish. These sanctuaries will also provide a place to stay and play. Fish ornaments are available in most pet and fish supply stores and are priced to suit all pockets.

You can of course, get more detailed ornaments that aren’t shaped to be anything, nicknacks like branches with weeds on them which are designed to resemble the natural habitat of your fish.

If you have amphibians in your tank they often like a waterfall ornament with a bathing pool at the bottom of it so that they can bath in it. Amphibians need a lot of greenery in their tank as this resembles their home and therefore you should try to make sure that you fill you tank with a suitable amount.

Home Aquarium Ornaments are easy to procure and there is not much effort involved in decoratively arranging them in your tank.

You should always try to place Ornaments in your Home Aquarium tank that are in keeping with your fish’s natural habitat. Goldfish and carp are very easy to keep and you can decorate their tank with all sorts of funny ornaments.

With smaller fish you can try to decorate their tanks with funky ornaments but I always feel that they prefer the traditional kinds of Ornaments. After all, fish also like their privacy.

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A Marine Home Aquarium

Posted by Oze Parrot on 29th January 2006

Establishing and maintaining a Marine Home Aquarium requires dedication and a lot of time and effort. You will need to spend at least half an hour, once or twice a day, to check and control the salt and PH levels of the water in your Marine Aquarium tank, thus keeping your fish comfortable.

Home AquariumSalt water Home Aquariums are considered more difficult to maintain than freshwater Aquariums because salt water fish have less tolerance to the rapid fluctuations that can occur within the enclosed environment of a Home Aquarium.

Maintaining a Marine Aquarium is difficult as well as time consuming, and saltwater fish demand more attention than their fresh water cousins. Salt, PH and temperature levels in your Marine Aquarium, must be constantly monitored and strictly controlled.

When your Marine Home Aquarium’s ecosystem is functioning properly, the salinity/specific gravity reading should be 1.022, measured at 77F/25C. The required PH reading is 8.2.
The levels of Nitrates, Alkalinity and Calcium, for reef keepers also has to be closely monitored and controlled.

Your selection of fish must be able to adapt to the environment that you provide for them. Obtain advice from your pet shop or Aquarium supplier as to the correct species of fish that you need for your Marine Home Aquarium

A Home Marine Aquarium needs a complex filter system that is professionally manufactured and is quite expensive to buy. The equipment, the accessories and the fish, for your Marine Home Aquarium are almost double the price than that of an equivalent freshwater Aquarium.

The end result is worth the effort as you will have a unique feature for your home, office or study. Marine fish are absolutely stunning, and you can have anemones and special corals with some bottom feeders like crabs and shrimps.

Because of the delicacy of the corals, there is a certain amount of extra work required to maintain a Marine Home Aquarium.

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Home Aquarium Lighting

Posted by Oze Parrot on 28th January 2006

Home Aquariums need to be illuminated for the fish to survive, this applies to both freshwater and marine Aquariums. There are however, different types of lights available for either one.

Most Aquarium tanks are sold devoid of a hood and lights, so these items, as well as light fittings, have to be purchased separately, adding a substantial amount to the purchase price of your Home Aquarium.

Home AquariumCertain fish require different lighting conditions; your pet shop or Aquarium supplier will advise you on what kind of lighting you need for the particular kind of fish that you are keeping.

Fluorescent Lighting is best for brightly coloured fish because the light accentuates the bold colours of the fish and produces a mysterious effect in the tank which highlights the movements of the fish.

Home Aquarium Lights are available in a range of sizes that are designed to service the most common aquarium tanks. You will need to select the correct combination of lights to suit your Aquarium tank.

Much harder lights are needed for marine tanks, particularly if you plan to install a coral reef. These reefs, which will grow in your tank, require a lot of pure light to exist and getting a lot of light into the depths of your Aquarium tank means installing one or more powerful light bulbs.

The corals and anemones need a lot of light and sensitivity to survive, so Lighting will play a very important part in your Home Aquarium if you are going to display a healthy coral reef.

Home Aquarium Lighting is available at all pet shops and Aquarium suppliers. The lights are easy to install but you will find that they are quite expensive. It will pay you to shop around.

Home Aquarium Lighting is essential, not only for the health of your fish, but for the visible attraction of your Home Aquarium, as a dominant feature in your home.

By selectively choosing an array of lights, from brilliant white to subdued colours, your Home Aquarium and it’s contents will provide lasting visual pleasure for all of the members of your household

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Home Aquarium Hoods

Posted by Oze Parrot on 27th January 2006

Another necessary accessory for your Home Aquarium is a Hood. Apart from setting off your Aquarium and adding to it’s visible attraction, an Aquarium Hood also has some practical advantages.

You will need to illuminate your Home Aquarium and the Aquarium Hood is the ideal place to mount your light fittings.
An Aquarium Hood will also help to keep your fish in the Aquarium tank, some fish, when they get excited or when they are getting fed, are often so agitated that they can basically propel themselves out of the tank.

Home AquariumHome Aquariums Hoods are available at specialised aquarium shops or your local pet store. They are just simply a decorative tank lid for the fish tank. It is essential that you have one of these otherwise you have no place for your lights; unless you get some hanging ones and hang them from your ceiling.

Home Aquarium Hoods are often made from plastic but some are made from wood. The wooden ones are often more expensive than the plastic types, mainly because of the price of timber and the added time and effort that goes into making a wooden hood.

Of course, you can purchase a Home Aquarium tank with a customised Hood that comes complete with light fittings, however these units are most expensive. If you choose a Jewel Aquarium, the Hood is included in the price as are the lights and fittings.

Home Aquarium Hoods are not very expensive but together with all of the other necessary accessories, being a Home Aquarium owner, is quite an expensive hobby. Owners have to make sure that the tank has everything that it needs, and these requisites are getting more and more expensive.

Prospective owners must first consider the initial outlay in establishing a Home Aquarium and the never ending maintenance costs involved in providing a first class feature for their homes.

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Home Aquarium: Aquarium Water Heater

Posted by Oze Parrot on 26th January 2006

If you are keeping tropical fish in your Home Aquarium it is essential that you have a regulated heating system installed in your Aquarium tank that will enable you to keep the water warm.

Tropical species of fish need a water temperature that ranges between 70 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit to be able to live happily. Goldfish are cold water fish so you don’t need to worry about a heater for them, they can exist in very cold water.

Home AquariumOften, when winter comes, pet shops get many calls from Home Aquarium owners, asking why their fish have just suddenly died or are acting strangely. This is because these people have not adjusted the thermostat control for their Home Aquarium Water Heater and their fish are cold.

As the weather gets colder people forget that their house temperature drops and so does the temperature in their Aquarium Water tank. The Aquarium Water Heater has to be adjusted accordingly to keep the fish comfortable.

If there is just a couple of degrees drop in temperature over a twenty four hour period, it could bring on a fish disease called Ich, also known as Whitespot, or your fish could simply die from the cold.

When buying a heater for your Home Aquarium you need to be aware of all the options. There are some very cheap water heaters available but then you run the risk of having the heater breakdown or a thermostat that doesn’t regulate the water tank temperature as well as it should, and you may not have a temperature range that suits your needs.

The mid priced range of water heaters are generally the most popular amongst Home Aquarium owners. They have reasonably decent thermostats which give adequate temperature control, the units are structurally sound and should give you reliable service.

It will pay you to check the water heater element regularly as their effectiveness deteriorates after nine or twelve months.

Check the temperature of the tank everyday to be sure that your fish are comfortable, if their water is too hot they will become distressed and if it’s too cold you could freeze their blood. You must constantly keep your eye on the Water temperature and make sure that it is properly controlled.

Always try to place your Home Aquarium Water Heater near the filter return tube as this will help to distribute the heated water throughout the Aquarium Tank. This will save your fish from encountering hot or cold patches of water. Controlled water heating is a very important part of being a successful Home Aquarium owner.

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Home Aquarium: Aquarium Glass

Posted by Oze Parrot on 25th January 2006

Aquarium Tanks are built from specially reinforced Glass to ensure that when the tank is filled with water, all the equipment is in place and the fish are introduced, the tank doesn’t collapse and disperse it’s contents onto the floor.

Home AquariumThe glass itself is quite heavy and when the tank is filled with water it is extremely heavy and requires a sturdy support. In certain cases, depending on the size of your Home Aquarium Glass Tank, the flooring may need to be reinforced. Fish tanks don’t just need to be made from glass; they can also be made from acrylic.

Aquarium Glass is an extremely thick, strong glass that is built to withstand the weight and pressure of at least ninety litres of water. Some tanks are as big as eight or nine feet long and three or four feet wide so, with water weighing one kilo per litre, you can just imagine the pressure that is on the glass.
Joins in the Aquarium Glass tank must be sealed with an extremely durable sealant so as to withstand the extreme pressure that is created by the weight of the water.

Some manufacturers are making Home Aquarium tanks using acrylic. Acrylic is known to be at least twice as strong as glass and half the weight. The benefits of acrylic tanks are that it can be moulded when heated to suit whatever shape or style of tank that you want. Also when the sides are moulded together with heat they are said to be stronger than the sealant used to hold the glass together.

I would be inclined to accept the advice of your Aquarium supplier in regards to which product, Glass or acrylic, is most suitable for your needs.

Aquarium Glass is easy enough to obtain and if you have the expertise to build your own Glass Aquarium tank, then you will significantly reduce the overall cost of your Home Aquarium.

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Home Aquarium Filter

Posted by Oze Parrot on 14th January 2006

Once you have your Home Aquarium set up to your satisfaction, you must install an efficient water Filter in your aquarium tank before you introduce any fish to the aquarium.

There are two kinds of filtration methods that are commonly used as Home Aquarium Filters, internal filters that are used in both salt water and fresh water aquariums and external Filters which are more expensive.

Many salt water aquariums have an internal tube for the water to flow down into a sump tank, which is just below the main tank and all the water flows through a canister, containing a certain type of foam, where all of the waste and bad bacteria is collected, thus filtering the water. The water is then pumped from the sump back into the top of the Aquarium Tank causing the water to flow continuously through the Filter. Although this method is noisy, it is effective but rather expensive.

A cheaper, alternative method is to install an internal Filter which consists of, what looks like, a large black rectangle box stuck to the inside of your tank, this sucks up water and waste through its underside, the water then passes up through the filter to an outlet at the top of the box. This method is not the most efficient but it is very cost effective.

An external filter is a hard working piece of machinery that keeps your aquarium in tip top condition and gets rid of all of the impurities in the water. The filtration plant is located outside of your Home Aquarium tank, the only connections from the tank to the Filter are two tubes.

One tube is used to syphon water from the fish tank to your Home Aquarium Filter, the other tube returns purified water to your Home Aquarium tank.

This is the most efficient and effective way to purify the water that is contained in your Home Aquarium tank and is well worth the expense involved.

Various types of filters are available at your local pet shop that supplies pet fish and aquarium needs.

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