Starting a Saltwater Marine Aquarium

Article by Albert Bohay

Dreaming of a slice of underwater nature in your home marine aquarium? Inspired by the beautiful and playful fishes in “Finding Nemo”, such as the Blue Tang and clownfish? More and more hobbyists are discovering the charm and pleasure of keeping a saltwater aquarium. This allows them to appreciate and learn about nature in a closer way, a very tangible reward indeed.

Visualize replicating one of Earth’s spectacular natural environments — the coral reef — right in your own home. You can actually set up and keep a tank complete with saltwater fishes, corals and landscaping. Aquarium fish care employing new methods helps to make long-term maintenance less tedious and ensure the marine inhabitants live healthy and longer.

Keeping saltwater fishes in a home aquarium has been thought to be challenging. Specialized equipment are required, which makes such marine tanks more expensive to keep; however, having this does not guarantee these pricey marine fishes will survive.

Upkeep of the tanks can be tedious as algae needs to be cleaned off frequently, not to mention the periodic cleaning of the undergravel filter and sand. Not surprisingly, many hobbyists tend to give up after a while.

The secret for a beginner to marine aquariums is to begin with a system that is designed for the long haul and is “self-adjusting”. Stay with beginner fish species and simpler methods with the help of suitable equipment.

A long term commitment is necessary as constant care of the aquarium is demanded, with the same level of responsibility of keeping a live pet such as a cat or dog. If the hobbyist is not prepared, he or she should consider keeping a freshwater aquarium instead.

A lot has been learned about the biological processes of nature’s reefs and newer aquarium equipment are now available to re-create such an environment. For example, using live rock as the main biological filter is one step in this direction, replacing more entrenched methods that use undergravel filters.

Another is the deployment of vigorous water circulation, which helps to distribute both good and bad elements across the tank. Thus, over concentration at any one area is prevented, creating an environment much like the ocean, where there is chemical uniformity and great stability.

Patience is definitely required to establish the beautiful marine tank that one so desires with these colourful aquatic creatures. It will most likely take half a year to stabilize a new tank and another half for it to be completely ready for the long haul.

Rushing will not help here as overnight results are hardly attainable by a beginner, even with the expense. Nonetheless, the sight of these beautiful saltwater fishes can be the main motivation to keep the hobbyist on track as the home aquarium evolves and takes shape with time and experience.

The success of starting a healthy and vibrant home marine aquarium can be extremely rewarding and exciting. For anyone willing to commit time, energy, money and some creativity, this hobby can provide relief from stress and satisfaction from a tank well kept.

For a lot of hobbyists, keeping a marine aquarium often becomes a life-long passion. Without a doubt, a beautiful saltwater tank is a sight to behold, with all those brightly coloured fishes darting around in their beautiful reef environment.

And who knows, keeping marine aquariums might even motivate hobbyists to go even closer to nature by learning snorkelling or diving. Perhaps, nothing is more real than seeing marine fishes in their natural environment and touching the reef corals.

Albert Bohay is a freelance article writer and product reviewer specializing in the hobby niche. Visit The Aquarium Fish Care Blog for relevant info on aquarium fish care. If you are just starting out, get good advice for saltwater aquariums and become successful faster.

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