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9 Things to Know Before Installing an Aquarium

9 Things to Know Before Installing an Aquarium

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Avoid Overfeeding Your Fish

Fish eat small amounts of food, and overfeeding can lead to increased water pollution. It is important to follow the recommended feeding guidelines on the food containers. Regularly check if there is leftover food on the water surface and decrease the amount if necessary.

Overfeeding can affect the health of the fish, making them more prone to diseases such as constipation or bloated stomachs. Excess food remaining on the surface after feeding is a sign of overfeeding.

Proper Feeding of Fish

It is recommended to split the fish’s meals and provide quantities they can consume within a few minutes. For example, you can feed them once in the morning and once in the evening.

To determine the appropriate amount of food, rely on the dosage instructions on the food container and adjust if necessary. Depending on the species, you can also let them fast once a week.

Adequate Aquarium Plants

Avoid having too few aquarium plants. Aquarium plants are not only visually appealing but also serve important functions:

  • They ensure a stable biological balance.
  • They filter pollutants in the water.
  • They increase the oxygen content in the water.
  • They prevent excessive algae growth.
  • They provide refuge for the fish.

When choosing aquarium plants, consider the needs of your fish. It is also important to arrange the plants properly in the aquarium to distribute them evenly. This will enhance the aquarium’s appearance and benefit your fish.

Avoiding Algae in the Aquarium

Whether it’s green, blue, or red algae, they can sometimes appear in our aquariums. Undesirable algae can cloud the water and leave unsightly deposits in the aquarium. The presence of excessive algae can be due to an imbalance in the aquarium, such as:

  • Excessive nutrients.
  • Oxygen deficiency.
  • Poor water quality.
  • Excessive or insufficient lighting.
  • Lack of aquarium plants.

To prevent the presence of unwanted algae in the aquarium, take the following steps:

  • Regularly check the water parameters.
  • Ensure an adequate amount of aquarium plants.
  • Perform regular partial water changes.
  • Clean the filter.
  • Avoid overcrowding the aquarium with too many fish.
  • Respect the recommended food quantities to avoid overfeeding.
  • Consider using algae-eating fish.
  • If algae problems persist, analyze the aquarium water more closely.

Aquarium Lighting

Proper lighting is essential for the healthy growth of plants and the well-being of fish and microorganisms. Fish need light to produce vitamin D and support their metabolic processes. Additionally, aquarium plants require light for photosynthesis and oxygen production.

Inadequate lighting can result in poor plant development and can affect the health of your fish. On the other hand, excessive lighting can sometimes promote algae growth.

When it comes to aquarium lighting, you can choose between fluorescent tubes, halogen lamps, HQL lamps, or LED lighting. The color temperature should be close to the natural daylight spectrum. Additionally, use a timer to control the duration of lighting.

Generally, it is advised to have around 30 lumens (light output power) per liter of water for effective lighting. LED lights are commonly used nowadays as they provide good quality lighting.

Oxygen Deficiency

Fish, plants, and microorganisms require oxygen to survive. The recommended oxygenation for a freshwater aquarium heated to 24 degrees Celsius is approximately 8mg per liter. For safety reasons, this level should not drop below 4 mg per liter.

Oxygen deficiency can be caused by:

  • Too many fish in relation to the aquarium size.
  • Excessive temperature.
  • Overfeeding of fish.
  • Lack of aquarium plants.
  • Undesirable algae.

Excrement, urine, and leftover food decompose and pollute the water, consuming oxygen in the process.

To ensure stable oxygen levels in the aquarium, follow these measures:

  • Ensure proper aeration.
  • Regularly perform partial water changes.
  • Maintain and clean the filters.
  • Provide optimal lighting.
  • Have a sufficient number of aquarium plants.

Don’t Underestimate Aquarium Decoration

Many aquarists decorate their aquariums to resemble the natural environment of the fish as closely as possible.

However, it’s important to note that stones, shells, or other elements collected from nature can release substances into the aquarium, affecting water quality and the health of your fish.

Even if the decorative elements collected from nature seem suitable for your aquarium, it is better not to take the risk. These elements can disrupt the balance of your aquarium by introducing dirt, bacteria, or other undesirable substances.

Although there are techniques to incorporate these decorations into your aquarium (e.g., by boiling them), we recommend using decorations available in specialized stores. Be cautious when collecting wood from nature, as it may contain rot, which is harmful to fish.

Fish Diseases

You can protect your fish from diseases, but some illnesses can be more challenging to detect. When introducing new fish to the aquarium, pathogens such as parasites and bacteria are introduced as well.

To treat fish diseases effectively, early detection is crucial. Here are some tips to detect if your fish are sick:

  • Only purchase medications from specialized fish stores.
  • Maintain good water quality and provide a balanced diet for the fish.
  • Observe the fish’s behavior closely.
  • Regularly maintain your aquarium.

Proper Aquarium Maintenance

Correct and regular maintenance directly impacts the health of your fish. However, excessive modifications during maintenance can disrupt the aquarium’s balance.

Here are some tips for maintaining your aquarium:

  • Have a good filter to capture substances released by microorganisms.
  • Avoid cleaning the filter too often or extensively, as it can remove essential microorganisms.
  • Use a net to remove floating debris from the water surface on a daily basis.
  • Perform regular partial water changes based on the size of your aquarium. Avoid changing all the water at once.
  • Check the water parameters weekly.
  • Consider using algae-eating fish, depending on your fish species.
  • Regularly remove limestone deposits from the aquarium glass.

Fish Coexistence

Some fish species cannot coexist. For example, freshwater and saltwater fish cannot live together. There are also other considerations to keep in mind.

Some fish from the same environment may behave differently in an aquarium and may not get along with each other. Certain species are territorial and should not be mixed.

When choosing your fish, pay attention to their specific requirements and gather information about the species in advance. Select species that inhabit different areas of the aquarium.

Which Fish Species Can Coexist?

In specialized stores, you will find fish species that can coexist without any issues, based on the advice of knowledgeable sellers.

Conclusion: Properly Maintain Your Aquarium and Choose Your Fish Wisely

When installing an aquarium, it’s easy to make unknowing mistakes. However, don’t get discouraged!

By thoroughly researching each step, you can create an ideal environment for your fish, ensuring their happiness.

Best of luck with setting up your aquarium!

mahatma gandhi portrait

- Mahatma Gandhi

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

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