Article by Alberto Sanchez
Salt water fish are easy to care for but they do have specific needs. Keeping saltwater fish is a different experience if you are used to keeping freshwater fish. There are several things you need to remember if you are planning on keeping salt water fish. These include the kind of water you need, the kind of filtration system you need to install, the kind of lighting and what species you are suited to care for.
Water parameters are very important when it comes to salt water fish because there are fish that cannot tolerate even the slightest changes in their environments. The salt content in the water will easily change since salt evaporates readily. You also risk having a high salt level if your freshwater content evaporates. Make sure to replace lost water every few days to keep salt levels normal. The water temperature is also important. The slightest change in temperature levels can kill your reef aquarium fish.
Saltwater fish require different lighting needs. In most cases saltwater tanks need brighter light compared to freshwater tanks because marine inhabitants are used to living in shallow portions of the seas. Reef systems are not cheap. If you invest in an expensive reef system it is only fitting that you spend for a good lighting system as well. Experts advice using metal halide lighting on your tank since these do not produce very strong lights that cause uneven reflections on the reef and shadows on the water.
Filtration systems are essential in any aquarium. Make sure you have enough time for maintenance especially since saltwater tanks tend to get dirty pretty quickly. Reef tanks require the three kinds of filtration media that are also essential in freshwater tanks– biological, chemical and mechanical. These media also require regular maintenance.
Owning fish for pets can be an enjoyable hobby. Although salt water fish require a bit of work their beauty is worth it. Before buying your fish though you need to research them, reef aquarium fish should not be bought on impulse and merely placed in a tank without prior preparation.