Category Archives: Reef Aquarium

Starting A Marine or Coral Reef Aquarium

A marine aquarium is an aquarium that keeps marine plants and animals in a contained environment. Marine aquaria are further subdivided by hobbyists into fish only (FO), fish only with live rock (FOWLR), and reef aquaria.

Fish only tanks often showcase large or aggressive marine fish species and generally rely on mechanical and chemical filtration. FOWLR and reef tanks use live rock, a material composed of coral skeletons harboring beneficial nitrogen waste metabolizing bacteria, as a means of more natural biological filtration.

Marine fish keeping is different from its freshwater counterpart because of the fundamental differences in the constitution of saltwater and the resulting differences in the adaptation of its inhabitants. A stable marine aquarium requires more equipment than freshwater systems, and generally requires more stringent water quality monitoring.[1] The inhabitants of a marine aquarium are often difficult to acquire and are usually more expensive than freshwater aquarium inhabitants. However, the inhabitants of saltwater aquariums are usually much more spectacular than freshwater aquarium fish.

A reef aquarium or reef tank is an marine aquarium that prominently displays live corals and other marine invertebrates as well as fish that play a role in maintaining the coral reef environment. A reef aquarium requires appropriately intense lighting, turbulent water movement, and more stable water chemistry than fish-only marine aquaria, and careful consideration is given to which reef animals are appropriate and compatible with each other.

Its a lot of work and many [people use an aquarium maintenance service to handle it.

What equipment is needed? Most modern aquarium equipment is designed to be functional in either salt or fresh water, but it is important to select quality, reliable supplies. It hardly pays to save six dollars on a heater or ten dollars on a filter system and risk the loss of twenty or thirty dollar fish. Contrary to some opinions, under gravel filters are not essential in saltwater aquariums. Many of our customers have had success using the sort of equipment that we include in our “PRO” setups; deluxe heaters, outside power filters and air stones. The only necessary additions to a good freshwater setup are special gravel (crushed coral), sea salt mix, and a hydrometer.

Are saltwater fish hard to keep? Just as in freshwater, there are some species that are usually quite sturdy and some that challenge even the experts. The “Marine Care and Compatibility Table” portion of this guide is meant to help the hobbyist choose fish and invertebrates appropriate for his level of expertise. In addition, the individual specimen should be observed closely before purchase. Sometimes an individual or group of even the most hardy variety will have been subjected to just one too many changes, and will become weak or sickly or will refuse to eat. We will try to help in choosing healthy specimens as much as possible.

Checklist of Items Needed to Start an Maintain a Saltwater Aquarium

The items listed here are pieces of equipment and components that are fundamental for setting up and running a saltwater aquarium or reef tank system.


You need to decide where you want to put your aquarium, determine what size you want or may only have room for, whether you want an acrylic or glass tank, and choose a style that will best fit into the spot you have picked out to display it.


The type of lighting you choose will be based on the type of system you have planned to set up, as well as what kind of livestock you will be keeping in it.

Skimmers, Filters & Filtration Equipment

Once again, what type of system you are going to set up will help you determine which kind of filters and filtration system to choose.


Depending on the size of your aquarium, the use one or several power heads is an excellent way to provide good water circulation throughout the system.

Live Rock & Substrate

Here you need to decide on what type of material you want on the bottom of the tank, as well as whether you want to start with a live or non-living medium. Live Rock plays an important role in a marine tank. Many marine animals, fish in particular, can be quite territorial. It is important to provide ample shelter or places where the animals can hide, sleep, and avoid potential problems with aggression from other tank mates in the confined space of an aquarium.

Sea Salt Mix/Saltwater & Hydrometer

Sea salts are what make an aquarium a saltwater or marine aquarium. Also referred to as a salinity tester, this item measures the specific gravity or salt content of the water.Heater &


For smaller aquariums one heater works well, but for larger systems the use of multiple units is advised. With stick-on, floating, multi-function remote digital sensor, and many other types of units to pick from, the material a thermometer is made of is an important factor when choosing one as well.

Air Pump & Air Stones

Only needed if you are going to run a piece of equipment that requires these items, such as a counter-current protein skimmer.

Test Kits,Additives & Supplements

For live rock and reef tank systems, calcium (a.k.a. limewater/kalkwasser) needs to be added. Other supplemental vitamins or additives that are beneficial to the health of certain marine inhabitants you may be keeping, such a iodine for crustaceans, are important as well.

Maintenance Tools & Supplies

This category includes having items on hand such as a various sized plastic buckets or containers, tank cleaning tools such as a siphon tube/hose, an algae scraper or magnet, as well as nets of different sizes, spare equipment replacements parts, and so on. A good way to keep track of what maintenance tasks you have preformed and when is to keep a log book or record of everything you do.

Populating Your Reef Tank

Article by Groshan Fabiola

A reef tank is a great way to add color and vibrancy to your home or office, and even if you have little or no knowledge about salt water environments you can still jump into this hobby head first. You can choose to fill your tank with fish such as Angel Fish, Barracuda and Burgess Butterfly. Even if you forego the saltwater fish, however, you can still have a beautiful and lively aquarium. Live coral are more popular than ever before and they provide just as much color, movement and vibrancy as fish and other sea creatures.

If you choose to populate your reef tank with fish, there are many varieties to choose from. There are many varieties of Angel Fish and Damsels that can be purchased for under $ 20, which are considered to be some of the best choices for beginners. They are fairly hardy and they are also inexpensive so you don’t need to worry about your money going down the drain if you have to flush any casualties down the toilet. More expensive and difficult to maintain fish can be added as you gain more knowledge and experience.

If you want to focus on live coral there are three general categories to choose from. These are the Soft Coral, Large Polyp Stony Coral, and Stony Coral. The soft corals are best for beginner reef tank owners because they are the hardiest and easiest to maintain. The large polyp stony corals are still pretty hardy but require somewhat more specific water flow and lighting, although they are more colorful and lively so many people find the extra effort worthwhile. The regular stony corals are the most difficult to maintain but they come in an extensive array of colors from bright pink to deep blue.

Live coral and saltwater fish keeping are some of the most enjoyable hobbies with the most beautiful rewards. By purchasing healthy animals from a reputable dealer, your reef tank will be thriving for many years.

For more resources regarding Saltwater clown fish or even about Tropical fish coral reef and especially about Coral fish please review these pages.

Exotic Salt Water Fish Habits

Article by Groshan Fabiola

There are many types of active and beautiful exotic salt water fish that live in tropical waters. These lovely exotic salt water fish live in tropical coral heads, where their thin selected bodies can pass easily through the seafloor with the other exotic salt water fish. One type of exotic salt water fish is known as the Chromis. These are colorful and they have wonderful patterns which everyone in your home or office can enjoy. This type of exotic salt water fish can camouflage themselves from other fish and when properly cared for, these exotic salt water fish can make beautiful and distinctive additions to exotic salt water fish tanks. When this exotic salt water fish is fed a varied diet and kept in pristine conditions, Chromis will usually do well. It is also worth knowing when it comes to this exotic salt water fish that Chromis are perhaps the ultimate reef fish due to the fact that this exotic salt water fish is peaceful and beautiful.

This exotic salt water fish will school, but in some situations, this tendency lessens as they grow older. When it comes to this exotic salt water fish, it is worth knowing that they are hesitant with their own class, as well. When it comes to exotic salt water fish, remember that a flake staple is usually sufficient; however for best vibrancy and health, these exotic salt water fish should be fed with frozen and live foods together at once. Remember when it comes to keeping this type of exotic salt water fish that these species are easily upset by changes in water conditions. Most are different than other exotic salt water fish because of their temperamental habits including the fact that one day they are happy with the diet you present and on another day they will not want to eat the food you give them. The good thing about this exotic salt water fish is that they tend to get along with the other exotic salt water fish in your tank for the most part and are vibrant in color.

For more resources regarding buy saltwater fish or even about buy live coral and especially about coral for sale please review these pages.

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Setting Up A Mini Aquarium

Article by Timothy Kessler

Even fish as easy to breed as goldfish need a proper fish tank. Though it might be a common misconception that one is capable of breeding goldfish in a bowl, it really is not a suitable condition to put a living creature in. Keeping goldfish in a bowl was a popular thing to do centuries ago when it was costly to have a proper fish tank but these days it is relatively cheap to buy a small aquarium complete with the important accessories that you require. A properly equip aquarium will ensure that your fish live healthily and long.

Three most important accessories that every aquarium especially a small aquarium needs are a aquarium lighting, heater and a filter. The way these three items work is by simulating the original environment from where the fish came from, providing them the highest chance of survival. Fish that are healthy will not only have vibrant colors but will also be active and pleasing to watch.

Setting Up Your Small Fish Tank

Aquarium filters work by circulating the water in the aquarium and also aerating it. In general, most filters provide up to three types of filtration; mechanical, chemical and biological. Mechanical filtration gets rid of the large debris and waste from the water which are either produced by the fish or leftover food. Biological filtration is achieved by beneficial bacteria that reduce ammonia into nitrite and then again into nitrate which reduces the toxicity level in the water. Chemical filtration utilizes activated carbon to reduce chemical traces from the water. Having a filter that provides all three filtration types will provide you the maximum cleanliness of the water.

Lighting will not only make the aquarium look beautiful, but will also provide the important element of light which most fish will appreciate. Living in a dark aquarium does at times cause fish to lose their beautiful colors. Also nothing beats watching them swim around, proudly displaying their bright colors which does tend to shine gorgeously in the light. Lighting is very crucial if you plan to have a reef tank. Coral need light in order to live and having no proper lighting will make them fade and die eventually. This is also the same case for an aquarium with plants in it. Plants need light to perform photosynthesis and if there is not enough light, they will soon wither and die.

If you plan to keep tropical fish then you will definitely need a fish tank heater. Tropical fish originate from a warm environment and if the temperature reduces, it will reduce their life span. If you don’t like the way a heater would look in your tank, you can always opt for a submersible heater for your small aquarium.

With all these accessories in mind, prepare before hand when you are ready to begin your small fish tank. It is always a good plan to buy them all at once so that they would be functioning at optimum levels when it is time to introduce the fish.

Nowadays, you will be able to buy a beginner fish tank complete with all these equipment so that you would not have to worry about buying them separately.

For more information on setting up a small fish tank and other fish tank guides, visit Fish Tank Filters at today.

It Is Important To Know How to set up a saltwater aquarium

Article by Al Scotts

Exquisite Reef Aquariums Featuing Tunze osmolator Pumps

The main element to beautiful and long lasting saltwater aquariums is the purchase of quality tunze pumps. Coral reefs are living, breathing wildlife which are similar to fish because the water in which they dwell supplies the much needed oxygen they need to thrive. The pumps sustain good water flow, filtration and help to reduce the look of algae expansion.

The pumps have several unique models to pick from and each model indicates a particular size. Bigger pumps associated with charcoal filled filters are perfect for larger aquariums but a small pump is sufficient for tanks that are no bigger than twenty gallons.

Generally, tunze pumps are sold anywhere that specializes in underwater life and especially those who concentrate on salt water fish and corals. Coral reefs and salt water fish can exist together nicely with a good reverse osmosis filtration system and habitual tank cleaning. It is suggested to replace at least 25 percent of the water each month which will decrease nitrate growth .

Many coral reef owners use the pumps to simulate waves in the ocean which also assist the corals to thrive in harmony. What typically starts out as an interesting activity for some people, swiftly turns into a passion for them and so they are constantly in search of top quality solutions to advance up to bigger and better tanks.

Coral reef aquarium owners advise tunze pumps because of their high quality and craftsmanship. Whilst a huge pump isn’t needed for a smaller tank, a fairly good size pump is recommended in the beginning to defend against any nitrate progress which could kill fish and reefs.

Nitrates are the final point of bacteria that is a result of weakened ammonia inside the aquarium. The ammonia emanates from fish waste and uneaten food that’s left to sit in the fish tank thus making the life cycle of the nitrates. Although a good pump will not stop this from occurring completely, it will maintain good water and oxygen flow that will help lessen the speed of development in between fish tank cleanings.

Good quality tunze pumps can be bought from almost any pet store, particularly those who specialize in salt water marine life. The pumps are fairly priced and reliable, providing much needed positive water circulation and oxygen movement. Coupled with sand and gravel at the base of the tank and a good charcoal filled filter, the pumps can last considerably longer than other tank pumps.

Starting out small and working your way up to 250 gallon tanks is recommended from the throngs of people that find coral reef aquariums to be a wonderful pastime and passion. As long as there is positive oxygen flow along with a good amount of water motion, any coral reef can flourish together with other salt water or even fresh water fish and marine life. Always remember the smaller the fish tank, the smaller the pump and your reefs to sustain extended healthy lives.

Bulk Reef Supply provides high quality bulk saltwater aquarium supplies at affordable prices, in addition it is a great resource on how to set up a saltwater aquarium. For saltwater aquarium supplies such as an tunze nanostream, calcium reactor and more, visit

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How To Set Up A Calcium Reactor In Your Aquarium

Article by Devin Gilliland

That is the reason why calcium reactors are so important to be used in aquariums. These calcium reactors can produce calcium continuously in the tank to the precise levels required so that optimal conditions are maintained. Calcium reactors will use up the carbon dioxide that is given off as a waste product into the aquarium and generate calcium, which can be useful in a number of ways to the inhabitants of the aquarium.

The following are two important ways in which calcium reactors become indispensable to the aquarium.

The most prominent benefit of using calcium reactors is that they maintain the pH value of the water. The pH value of the water has to be maintained at a neutral state, but if the level changes, then the water can become too acidic or too alkaline for the inhabitants of the tank. When calcium is released into the water by the calcium reactors, it helps to stabilize the pH value of the water and maintain it at an optimum level.

Algae that live in the aquarium play an important role in the closed ecosystem of the tank. They are useful for the sustenance of living organisms in your reef tank. For example, some of these algae could help the corals within your tank with their nutrition by forming a mutually benefiting association with them. But algae, especially the algae that grow on corals, require calcium to survive. Calcium reactors help to fulfill this necessity.

Setting up a calcium reactor in an aquarium is very simple, and you can do it yourself by referring to a DIY guide. Calcium reactors are set up by assembling several components. Here is a list of the different components that need to be assembled:-

1. Carbon dioxide cylinder – The carbon dioxide is available in a pressurized cylinder. It is present in a refillable bottle. It is attached by straps to the aquarium so that it does not accidentally fall over.

2. Calcium carbonate medium – The medium is kept within the calcium reactor and it gets dissolved into the tank. The dissolution is controlled by the pH values that are set within the reactor. These calcium carbonate media are different substances containing CaCO3 in them, such as calcite for example. They are slowly allowed to dissolve into the tank.

3. Solenoid valve – The solenoid valve is like a switch that is used to allow the carbon dioxide to flow into the reactor. It is usually connected between the carbon dioxide cylinder and the main reactor. Another method of connection is to attach it to the pH controller and then to put the probe into the reactor.

4. Pump – The pump will be required to feed the water into the reactor. The attachment of the pump will depend on the kind; however the pump connection must be such that a proper circulation of water is maintained into the reactor. offers the most premium aquarium supplies on the net. We offer protein skimmers, powerheads, pumps and more for your saltwater aquarium.

Come along on the fifty first episode of LA Fishguys as Jim Stime of Aquarium Design in Thousand Oaks CALIF., shows you how to set up a 100 gallon coral reef tank. This 3-part episode shows how to plumb the internal overflow, the drain line down to a Euro style filtei, water pump, and chiller. Jim indepthly explains how to determine the correct water level in the filter system.
Video Rating: 4 / 5

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Aquariums And Fish Care – Should-Appreciates Of Fish Care

Article by Morris Higgens

The modern tanks are rather simple to preserve due to the fact filtration systems can be used for purification of drinking water to retain it clear and zero cost from pollutants. On top of that, electrically controlled methods are put in position to manage optimum values of water. Food and dosage are also maintained by the automated products. The contemporary tank high-quality has advanced so substantially that you get tanks in all shapes and sizes which are break resistant as well as electrically secure.

A single tank can accommodate tons of vegetation and fish. They provide a welcome relief from the day’s stress and are perfect nature enhancements in your environments. It is especially quick to go with a tank now as a great deal of wide range in dimensions, thickness of glass, capability, excess weight and security are on the market. Most of the tanks are developed of glass panels which are joined with silicon sealants.

Glass Aquariums

Citizens have implemented glass aquatic tanks for all varieties of fish lifestyle and aquatic plant existence during history. They are some of the most sturdy, reliable components for your aquarium. Glass aquariums are positively a little something to have a look at if you are going to set up an aquatic show.

In the Victorian occasions, the hobby of fish preserving was (nevertheless a lot antiquated in comparison to our latest aquarium technological know-how) also taken care of by housing the fish and / or plant life in a glass container. Quite often these glass containers would use a metal or other metal base and would be heated around open flame, presumably to preserve the drinking water clean – as water filters do presently. The sheets of glass applied ended up made and created using metallic frames. In the 1960’s the style and design of glass aquariums commenced to do away with the metal framing of the past and glass tanks were sealed with each other with a silicone – centered adhesive. A decade later, the exact same styles and sizes of glass aquariums that continue to be in model became obtainable in acrylic materials as very well.

What You May want to Know About Custom Aquariums

Custom aquariums furnish quite a few possibilities when it arrives it a wall aquarium or a space separator aquarium. The all natural beauty of an aquarium is something that adds a serene beauty to any house or workplace room. This is a magnificent and one of a kind way to enrich an area other than the standard fish tank.

Numerous homes and establishments are putting in custom-made aquarium tanks. There are plenty of distinctive variations of tanks that can be installed. And the fantastic information is that they are more economical than 1 would believe that. Clients can go for amid a lot of distinctive types. Some of the choices comprise freshwater, a saltwater, reef or coral tanks. A customized aquarium is probable to value even more than an ordinary aquarium since you are paying for an exceptional design but there are designs that are very very affordable.

What Tends to make Florescent Bulbs So Well known For Aquariums?

There a number of explanations why florescent bulbs are so preferred. It is basically given that of their wide range. There are the various to choose from measurements which include 18″ all the way up to 30″. The a variety of spectrum ranges from a sleek green to an icy blue. The huge selection of wattage irrespective of whether it is ranging from a reduced 6 watts to 20 watts. Also a lot more importantly the costs, they are truly inexpensive which indicates that they are out there for just about anyone and everyone with no hitting you where it hurts most.

Florescent bulbs are glass tubes filled with gas. The gases in the tube warmth up via electrical power to establish the light that illuminates your aquarium. As the light passes as a result of the Phosphor coating on the inside of the tube, the numerous mixtures of phosphors generate a color based on its certain chemical compounds. These variations of bulbs are great for fish only aquariums, which is a general setup and are also high quality for some dwell crops.

Take a look at the best source for Cerith Snail for your Saltwater Aquarium . You might also like this content on Aragonite Sand.

Coral Reef Fishes – Adaptations For Life On The Reef

Article by William Alevizon PhD

Of the myriad creatures that inhabit coral reefs, none are more obvious, colorful, or fascinating to watch than the fishes that live there. Hundreds of species may be found in relatively small areas of reef, with many of these small, well camouflaged, or hidden.

Coral reefs are unusually complex and colorful marine environments. The physical structure of these unique marine habitats differs radically from the open water habitats that comprise over 99% of the world’s oceans, with a diversity of life unmatched in any other marine ecosystem. Therefore, it is not surprising that resident fishes have developed a number of specialized adaptations for life in these colorful and complex habitats.

The best way to gain a true appreciation of the amazing swimming skills of coral reef fishes is to simply hover motionless or swim very slowly above a coral reef at the best Caribbean snorkeling spot you can find, and watch for a while.

Body Shape

The body shape of most species of fish that associate closely with coral reefs differs substantially from the shapes of “typical” open water fishes. The latter are generally built for speed, and have evolved appropriate torpedo-like shapes that offer low frictional resistance to movement through water.

However, in the complex reef environment, a premium is placed upon maneuverability rather than sheer speed. Thus, coral reef fish have evolved a body plan that maximizes their ability to make rapid turns, avoiding swift predators by quickly dodging into fissures in the reef or swiftly circling around coral heads.

The essence of this design is a deep and laterally compressed body (shaped like a pancake), as well exemplified by the angelfishes and butterflyfishes. A less obvious but critical aspect of this altered body plan includes a shift (compared to open water fishes) in the placement and orientation of the pectoral and pelvic fins, which act in concert with the flattened body shape to maximize maneuverability.


Perhaps the most striking feature of coral reef fishes is the variety of brilliant and sometimes bizarre color patterns that adorn them. Again, the use of such color patterns in reef fishes contrasts starkly with the usual color patterns of open water fishes which typically are silvery.

The reasons for the bright and varied color patterns of coral reef fishes has been debated for some time. In some cases, the patterns appear to facilitate concealment under certain conditions, as when the fish is resting in particular places. In other cases, coloration may be used in species recognition to assure mating success. Sometimes, bright contrasting colors are used to warn predators of venomous spines or flesh so as to avoid “mistaken” attacks.

Feeding Structures

With the unusual variety of prey items available to coral reef fishes, it is not surprising that many species have evolved highly specialized jaws, mouths and teeth suited to particular kinds of prey.

For example, “food specialists” like the butterflyfishes (Chaetodontidae) have evolved protruding mouths that are in essence forceps armed with fine teeth – a combination well suited to nipping the coral polyps that are the primary food source of these fishes. Similarly, the parrotfishes (Scaridae) have evolved a beak-like mouth ideally suited for scraping algae from hard coral surfaces.

In contrast, many other common reef-dwelling fishes such as snappers (Lutjanidae) are generalized feeders that have retained a more “typical” mouth and jaw structure that enables them to utilize a wide variety of prey.

There is still much to learn about this fascinating group of fishes, and the adaptations that have collectively made them such a diverse and successful part of the reef fauna.

William Alevizon PhD is a professional marine biologist, author, and scuba instructor who writes on a variety of topics related to ocean life and coral reefs. To learn about the best Caribbean snorkeling destinations for fish watching, visit our website.

Like other puffer fish, a coral reef porcupine fish has spines that are used as defense mechanisms. Identify porcupine fish withtips from a scuba instructor in this free video about coral reef animals. Expert: Don Stark Bio: Don Stark is a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor with over 20 years of active diving experience. Filmmaker: Demand Media

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Why a Reef Tank Needs Long Legged Salt Water Hermit Crabs

Article by Tod Schaffer

Deemed as Reef SafeExperienced reef keepers will tell you that most species of the long legged hermies are deemed as reef safe. It is best to buy the smaller varieties because they are less lightly to destroy the coral, eat other fish or upset the finely balanced structure of your tank. Instead they will sit comfortably with other species and varieties of marine life in perfect harmony.Sand siftersCertain types of these particular hermies are known as sand sifters. This means that they will scour the bottom of the tank where the substrate sits and pick out detritus, other fallen debris and any uneaten food that fall to the bottom of the tank. They are even known to eat faecal matter. This means that they kind of act as a biological sand filter system. Vacuum cleanersThese particular hermies are very good vacuum cleaners. This means that they swim through the water hoovering up unwanted particles thus keeping it clean and free from any crud such as red slime algae that might develop over a period of timeFood findersAs the title suggests, these hermies are natural scavengers. This means that they will scour your reef tank for food particles and will find their own source of food. So you do not have to feed them very often. Just be aware that if the algae within your reef tank dries up, you will need to make sure that you supplement their diet by giving your pet hermies a little dried seaweed, as this contains all the nutrients they need to be fit and healthy.As you can see here are some of the reasons why long legged salt water hermit crabs are an excellent addition to your reef tank. They are masters at keeping your tank or aquarium at the right natural balance that will in turn support all the other marine life living within it. They also provide a fun element to your aquatic paradise as they constantly change their shells. Finally their lifespan can be quite lengthy, so you will not have to keep replacing them every few years. So if you are about to set up your reef tank for the first time then the aquatic hermies should be the first on your list every single time.

Tod Schaffer is a Hermit Crab enthusiast who has vast experience of raising Hermit Crabs. For more information about long legged saltwater Hermit Crabs, Visit Hermit Crabs.

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Why Set Up a Fish Tank?

Article by Tristan Andrews

You’ve been to the pet store and noticed the fish tanks and thought “maybe I could do that”. Guess what, you can “do that” and it’s not nearly as difficult as you may think.

The tropical fish keeping hobby has come a long way over the past decade thanks in part to advances in aquarium equipment and the plethora of readily available information. There are many outstanding fish and aquarium books available as well as an abundant amount of information on the internet, forums and discussion groups. Running your own tank is way easier than it was just 10 years ago.

In the past, folks would go to the pet store and buy the tank, equipment and fish all at once not knowing they were setting themselves up for failure. They would get the aquarium set up and running, put some fish in and everything would be fine for a couple of days but then the fish would start to die. Now we know better. We know about the crucial aquarium nitrogen cycle that must take place in all new tanks. We know how to properly acclimate tropical fish to our tank water and how to periodically use our aquarium test kits to test the tank water to make sure nothing is out of whack. We have better access to fish behavior and can determine which fishes shouldn’t be kept together in the same tank. The information is out there, at our fingertips, at libraries, book stores and the search engines.

So, with all this available information we can quickly come up to speed with running a tank in our home. There are many different types of aquarium setups but the most common types are freshwater, saltwater fish only and saltwater reef tanks. Here is a very brief intro:

Freshwater AquariumThe mainstay of the hobby and the most popular setup, a freshwater tank setup can be a great first tank and it will give you the necessary experience needed for branching out into other types of tanks. This setup is the least expensive in terms of equipment and livestock and is not usually as demanding as the other types. There are literally hundreds of different types of fish available so finding a species you’ll like shouldn’t pose a problem. You can keep live aquarium plants in your tank as well. Keeping plants may require an upgrade to your lighting system and you may have to add supplements to your tank water. Freshwater aquarium plants add another dimension of beauty to a freshwater tank.

Saltwater AquariumSaltwater tanks are perceived to be more difficult than freshwater tanks. In times past, that statement may have been true but I don’t think that is necessarily the case today. With the increasing use of live rock as the primary biological filter in a saltwater tank setup, the chances of successfully running this type of aquarium have dramatically improved. A fish only saltwater tank equipped with live rock will be more expensive than a freshwater tank because you’ll need to purchase live rock and a protein skimmer. Marine fish are also more expensive than their freshwater counterparts.

Saltwater Reef TankThe ultimate tank setup in this hobby has to be the reef tank. It’s like having a small piece of the coral reef in your living room. The emphasis is on the corals and invertebrates with a limited amount of fish. These tanks are however, more expensive to setup and maintain. Equipment such as metal halide lighting, protein skimmers, live rock, testing equipment, supplements, water purification units (reverse osmosis and deionization) and sumps drive the cost of this setup.

Don’t forget about the ongoing maintenance costs (electricity) as well. The livestock costs for live corals, fish and invertebrates are also very expensive. This type of tank can be very demanding when first set up because you’ll need to monitor the water parameters periodically and take corrective action when necessary. Even though this is the most expensive type of setup, it can also be the most breathtaking. You should to do your homework (research) and figure out exactly what you want to accomplish before buying your first piece of reef equipment.

No matter what type of tank setup you choose, as long as you do your homework beforehand you’ll enjoy this hobby. Research the equipment and livestock before purchasing them and you will prevent many headaches and keep some of that hard earned money in your wallet!

Tristan Andrews is a freelance author who writes articles about pet health and pet supplies.

Reef Aquarium Supplies Maintain The Right Water Chemistry In Your Tank

Article by Bryan Abram Marks

To maintain the right water chemistry in the tank, the careful preparation of magnesium chloride, magnesium sulfate and other reef aquarium supplies must be made. This will allow the fish, corals and other marine life to flourish in the aquarium. Thankfully, keeping a reef aquarium healthy is made easy by the availability of reef supplements, which simply need to be placed in appropriate amounts.

The natural seawater contains a specific and powerful mix of elements that support the marine life. These are precisely the elements that support the growth and vitality of corals, invertebrates, fish and algae elements. For instance, animals that inhabit the reefs and the ocean are constantly exposed to saltwater, which also enables them to regularly replenish the amount of needed elements. In an aquarium, which is a closed system, such is not the case. These trace elements are found in limited quantities, and can therefore be rapidly depleted.

An important substance used in reef aquaria is magnesium, which is maintained using aquarium supplements. With magnesium in the system, essential mineral and nutrient levels are regularly replenished to provide an ongoing source that will ensure the proper biological function of corals. They also help the tank inhabitants resist changes in water conditions, and prevent microbial growth. Reef aquarium supplies that enrich the aquarium environment are now available in many shops, including those with online presence. With these stores, even beginners can easily set up their reef aquariums, and experience the joy of keeping a healthy environment right in their homes.

Resource Box:

Bulk Reef Supply provides a variety of reef aquarium supplements such as calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, and magnesium sulfate to maintain the right water chemistry for your tank. Aside from these, you can also purchase very affordable reef aquarium supplies such as high-quality dosing pumps and calcium alkalinity drippers. For more information, visit or call 763-432-9691.

Bryan Abram Marks is a certified digital marketer and experienced online article writer. Bryan’s interest in a diverse range of industries and what they have to offer drives him to conduct extensive research, and publish informative articles that aim to benefit astute consumers like himself.

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Caring For Reef Aquarium Fish, What You Should Know

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 System

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.

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Reef aquarium pests

Article by Peter Cunningham

As with most hobbies there are some things that are definitely undesirable. Keeping a saltwater reef aquarium or saltwater fish only aquarium is a most fulfilling hobby, but irritating problems can occur.

For example, outbreaks of filamentous green algae, brown/black/red smear algae, glass anemones and bubble algae (sailor’s eyeball algae) are four of the major culprits. These problems can develop into major headaches if proper action during setting-up and the following care and maintenance are not taken.

The really annoying part is that glass anemones and bubble algae can be decorative at first. In fact, an unwary and inexperienced aquarist might be pleased with his new additions.

These problems usually arrive with new corals, or, rather, on the rocks the new corals are attached to. Live rock can also introduce them.

A major cause of algae problems is low water quality, that is, water that has too high levels of nitrate and phosphate. It has been reported that filamentous green algae, smear algae, and glass anemones do well in the presence of nitrate and phosphate.

To make bubble algae (sailor’s eyeball algae) even more annoying, it is said that to do well it needs high quality water. So if they appear in your tank, definitely take control action, but at least be pleased that your water is good.

I have dealt with bubble algae successfully. I have also waged war with glass anemones, but have found that, once the war is generally won, occasionally control action is needed when another pops its unwelcome head up.

The answer to these problems is the proper setting up of a tank from the start, and ongoing care and maintenance.

These reef aquarium pests may never invade your tank at all, but it is probable that one or the other will appear. Be aware, and be prepared with the necessary knowledge to take remedial action.

Peter Cunningham and John Cunningham combined have been keeping salt water aquarium’s for nearly 35 years. Visit their site ‘The Salt Water Aquarium’ if you are interested in starting a marine aquarium reef tank.

More Saltwater Reef Aquarium Articles

Reef Fish Identification – Tropical Pacific

Reef Fish Identification – Tropical Pacific

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