Starting an aquarium at home provides you a captivating and beautiful sight. So, you may be looking for aquarium care for beginners. Thus, you have decided to indulge in the art and experience of fish keeping. Every year thousands of people buy the beginner fish tank and discover the natural wonders of aquariums. Freshwater aquarium maintenance provides a tranquil and relaxed atmosphere that leaves you feeling at peace. In this article, we will go through the top aquarium care for beginners- tips and benefits. We will also go through the various elements that should be included in your freshwater aquarium maintenance checklist.
In the process of creating your own little freshwater fish for your home aquarium ecosystem, you will also learn the process of setting up an aquarium, learn to introduce aquatic creatures, learn how they should coexist with each other and also observe their behavior firsthand. There is nothing like having an aquarium to help you understand, appreciate and respect the environment around us.
Setting up beginner fish tank and collaborating is fun and easy. By having an aquarium, you can transform your home/office into an entertaining and relaxing area for your family/employees.
Aquarium Care for Beginners
Having Fish as pets:
You have decided to get a beginner fish tank and don on the hat as a pet parent As a pet parent you will agree that they deserve the best care and attention. Freshwater tropical fish rely on you to keep their ecosystem healthy and clean, keeping an aquarium clean and consistently healthy is not a difficult task. You will need to conduct proper research and know the do’s and don’ts, all these components will not happen by itself and you will need to take on the responsibility to keep the fish tank clean.
As with any pets, starting a fish tank setup also come with its fair share of responsibilities; in rivers, lakes, and oceans, the water is filtered and cleansed naturally. However, in a beginner aquarium, it’s an entirely different narrative altogether. The water is enclosed in a glass case and has no natural variants to help keep the water and the aquatic elements clean and filtered; this is where you as a pet parent will come in. It means you are carrying out proper fish tank maintenance such as keeping the freshwater clean, feeding the fish at the right time, and maintaining the optimum crowd of fish.
This may sound overwhelming, but it’s not; at the most, it will take 30 minutes of your time, once in a week. Starting a fish tank for beginners can seem like a daunting task in the beginning, but once you have a listing place, you will transition into the role of a pet parent quite easily.
Listed below are some of the things you will need to get started:
- Fish tank
- A good filter
- Proper lighting
- Gravel (pre-washed or coated)
- Water conditioner – This De chlorinates tap water so that it’s safe for the fish
- A net
- Gravel washer
- Fish food
Setting up your aquarium:
In this section, we will go through the Freshwater Aquarium Maintenance Guidelines that you, as a beginner, will require. Keep reading to know more:
Handle with care:
- It’s very important to remember that you should never, ever attempt to carry a full or partially full aquarium setup; you can risk breaking the aquarium, harming the aquatic life and also harming yourself.
- Never lift an aquarium setup with a wet hand, for a good grip of the aquarium make sure that your hands are bone dry.
- Don’t attempt to carry the beginner fish tank by lifting the upper edges or the frame.
- Do carry the aquarium setup by grasping it from underneath and always supporting the bottom part.
Preparing the tank:
During freshwater Aquarium Maintenance Setup and before filling the tank make sure that it’s spotless. Clean your tank inside and out but refrain from using soaps, detergents or any cleaning agent that can change the pH level of the water and cause harm to the fish.
Choosing a location:
- Always place the beginner fish tank in an area that can support its total weight.
- An aquarium that is filled with gravel and water can weigh up to 10 to 12 pounds per gallon of water.
- Always make sure that you place your starters aquarium on a flat and sturdy surface and that there is an electrical outlet nearby.
- Don’t place your starters aquarium near the air conditioner or a heater.
- Don’t place your starters aquarium in an area where there is loads of sunlight, and even partial sunlight can promote excessive algae growth.
The Aqueon Aquarium Fish Tank Starter Kits with LED Lighting
The Aqueon Aquarium Fish Tank Starter Kits with LED Lighting is a great fish tank for new pet parents who want to start with something that is durable and affordable. This aquarium is available on Amazon.com for 45 dollars and is available for Prime members at a significant discount.
The reason we recommend this aquarium is because of the incredible reviews that back up its quality and credibility. The fish tank is equipped with a filter, LED lighting, a heater, and a setup guide. All these elements put together will help you create a perfect home for your fishes and will make for an ideal freshwater aquarium setup.
The kit also includes a setup guide to make the installation a breeze!
The next step in Freshwater Aquarium Maintenance Setup is adding a layer of gravel to your beginner fish tank. You can begin by adding 1.5 to 2 pounds of gravel to every gallon of aquarium water. Before adding the gravel be sure to rinse it thoroughly, that is until the drained water is clear, before adding it into the tank. The gravel bed should gently slope forward in your aquarium.
Fluval Polished Ivory Gravel for Aquarium, 4.4-Pound:
Having good quality gravel in your aquarium is necessary! The Fluval Polished Ivory Gravel are finely polished earth stones from India; they are smooth and have a quality finish. This product costs 16 dollars and has a 4.8-star rating.
The gravel is perfect for freshwater aquariums and provides a decorative element as well! The gravel is non-toxic and is entirely safe for your fish.
Filling your aquarium:
When you pour a stream of water directly into your aquarium, you can risk disturbing the gravel bed. It’s recommended that before you add water, you should place a clean dish on top of the gravel and slowly pour the water over the dish, by doing so the stream gently rebounds without displacing the gravel.
Always make sure that you fill your aquarium with room temperature water, if you pour in cold water it can produce condensation, which will give an image of leakage. If condensation does happen then take a cloth and wipe it off with a clean cloth just until the temperature stabilizes.
De-chlorinating your water is a significant step, you should do this before pouring the water into the aquarium, and if you add plain and untreated tap water, it can end up killing your fish.
Aquatic Experts Premium Complete Aquarium Water Conditioner For Fish Tanks:
This water conditioner is popular, and you can view the rating and reviews on Amazon.com to vouch for the credibility! Priced at 15 dollars, this product is worth every cent. With just one teaspoon of the formula, every week, you will instantly get rid of chlorine, chloramines, ammonia, and Nitrites; all this without any of the awful chemical smells.
Decorating your tank:
Once the fish tank is half full, you can go ahead and add aquatic plants (live or artificial) and, if you want, even decorative rocks/ornaments. Remember, before adding any of the décors, rinse them thoroughly. Before placing plants, it’s a good idea to place the larger ones in the rear area of the tank and the smaller ones towards the front. By doing so, you are creating an open area for the fish to swim. Once all the ornaments and plants are in place, you can continue filling your aquarium within an inch towards the rim.
Nickelodeon SpongeBob SquarePants Small 6 Inch Pineapple House Aquarium Ornament from Penn Plax – Durable Resin Safe for All Fish:
He doesn’t have to live in a pineapple under the sea anymore, and you can bring the infamous SpongeBob SquarePants house into your aquarium! For nine dollars this unique and quirky piece is available on Amazon.com and has excellent reviews and ratings too. The Pineapple house measures at 5.9 inches in height and makes an excellent gift for anyone who is a fan of this animated classic.
The piece is made of non-toxic and durable resin, and it can be easily cleaned with the help of cloth when you are cleaning the tank. The ornament has been inspected by keeping your fish’s safety in mind and designed to be of a perfect size for your fish tank, no matter what the size.
The piece is perfect for adults and children, and it adds color and whimsy to your fish tank. The pineapple has a sturdy base, so it will remain intact at the bottom of the fish tank and won’t float to the surface.
Three stage filtration:
A home aquarium for beginners requires proper filtration; this involves three stages that are necessary:
- Mechanical filtration- This traps solid elements or debris like uneaten food particles and fish waste. The filter cartridges are a perfect source of mechanical and chemical filters.
- Chemical filtration- This filter uses activated carbon to attract and hold dissolved pollutant particles that can cause the water to discolor and creates an odor. Each cartridge in chemical filters come equipped with premium activated carbon.
- Biological Filters- These filters depend on oxygen-loving bacteria to eliminate ammonia that can be toxic to the aquarium life. The bacteria change the ammonia and nitrite into nitrate, which can be removed through water changes. This bacteria grows on many natural surfaces within the aquarium, like gravel, decorative rock, and plastic plants and will provide biological filtration.
Tetra Whisper Power Filter for Aquariums, 3 Filters in 1:
The tetra whisper power filter is designed for aquariums that are smaller than 40-gallons. It is available on Amazon for 15 dollars and has a 4-star rating as well. Reviews have praised the product for its capability to keep the water clean for a long time. All you will need to do is follow the simple guide that comes along with it while installing the filter. It’s great for mechanical filtration.
Aqueon Quietflow E Internal Power Filter:
This economical and vertical oriented internal filter efficiently cleans and filters your aquarium water, it also provides chemical filtration. The auto-start pump requires no priming and automatically restarts if power is interrupted and restored.
The product is available on Amazon.con, for 10 dollars with sizes that range from 3 gallons to 40 gallons.
Heat, light, and electricity:
Freshwater home aquarium for beginners includes equipping your tank with the proper heat, light and electricity settings. You can use a heater to maintain the water temperature in your aquarium when you get started on aquarium care for beginners you should keep in mind the type of fish you want to keep in the tank. Many species of tropical fish need a consistent water temperature between 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Goldfish and other cold water species are an exception to this rule; they can exist quite comfortably in colder temperatures.
When you incorporate proper lighting above your tank, you can bring out the color of the fish, and this will also help the aquatic plant life to thrive. There are many types of aquatic light fixtures that are available in the market. Your dealer can help you decide on the kind of fixture you need. It’s always a good idea to have a hood or tank cover because this way no airborne pollutants will enter the tank.
It’s important to note that you regulate the lighting of your tank to 7-10 hours a day so that you can curb the growth of algae. Before turning the heater on, take special care that you read all the safety instructions in the owner’s manual and use a drip loop.
Uniclife HT-6050 Aquarium Heater Submersible with Thermometer for 10 Gallon Fish Tank, 50 W:
This product is currently in stock and is priced at 10 dollars on Amazon.com. This heater has a wide application and can be used for tropical freshwater fish tanks. It can be easily adjusted and displayed at the upper portion of the tank.
Things to remember before you add the fish: aquarium care for beginners
When you think about aquarium care for beginners, you think about creating a whole new environment for your pet fish, to do so it’s essential that you have patience; this attribute is critical if you want to be a successful pet parent. Before you add the fish make sure that your tank system has been operating fully for 24 hours. Begin by speaking to your dealer on what fish are best suited for your aquarium, which fish are compatible with each other and how many fishes are ideal in one tank.
TetraMin Nutritionally Balanced Tropical Flake Food for Tropical Fish:
The tetramin brand is synonymous with good quality, and it’s now available on Amazon.com for six dollars. It has raving customer reviews and a 4.8-star rating. The new look is also accompanied by an upgraded formula now along with prebiotics.
The item is currently in stock and is available in sizes that range from 0.42 ounces to 4.52 Pounds. The food is easily digested by the fishes, and the nutrients are easily absorbed, thus resulting in less waste. The packaging may vary.
Adding the fish:
It is understandable to feel excited when you see your fish tank all set up and looking pretty as a picture, but in all your excitement don’t make the mistake of overcrowding your tank, or worse overcrowding your tank with fish that are not compatible with each other. An integral part of aquarium care for beginners is that you should begin by introducing a few, generic fish into the tank, once the initial fish get accustomed to their surroundings, you can continue adding two or three more fishes over time, preferably over four to six weeks.
When you go shopping for your new pet fish, remember to choose ones that are active and healthy, don’t overcrowd your fish tank; the fewer fish, the less stressed out they are. When you are about to empty the bag into the water to transfer the fish, ensure that the temperature of the water is the same as the bag that they leave from. To ensure that the water in the bag is the same temperature as the water in the tank, let the bag float in the tank for at least 15 minutes. Every five-minute interval, gradually allow little water from the tank to enter the bag, finally. After 15 minutes, gently take the fish into the net and place it into the aquarium. Don’t add the bag water into the water into the tank. Make the transition less traumatic to the fish.
Feed your fish twice a day, and only give them food that they consume in five minutes.
Taking care of your fish tank:
When you take care of your fish tank, it translates to healthy and active fishes. It is vital that you replace your filter cartridge and perform a 25 percent water change every two to four weeks; you will also need to vacuum the gravel methodically to remove any waste buildup. The easiest and effective way to achieve a water change and gravel cleaning is with a normal, siphon-operated gravel vacuum. Water that appears cloudy, yellowish or begins to smell bad is a sign telling you that your aquarium water needs to be changed and a new filter cartridge needs to be fitted immediately.
If the problem persists, it may be because the fish tank is too crowded, or because you’re overfeeding the fishes. It’s recommended that you bring a sample of your water to your dealer for testing, when replacing water in an aquarium, make sure that you treat it first. Most tap water contains chlorine, and by adding untreated tap water to your tank, you could harm your fish.
Be sure to ask your dealer for the water de-chlorinator that works best with your local tap water and replaces old water with new water of approximately the same temperature to avoid shocking your fish. Set aside a variety of buckets, sponges, and towels to be used only for your aquarium. This prevents the entry of harmful pollutants into the system, and always keep in mind to unplug electrical equipment before performing aquarium maintenance of any kind.
Polar Aurora 4-stage External Canister Filter with 9-watt Uv Sterilizer, 525 GPH:
By investing in a good filter, you can increase the mortality of your fishes and also reduce the instances needed for cleaning the water within the tank. This filter is priced at 76 dollars and is currently in stock on Amazon.com. Two sizes are currently available the 525 GPH with media and the 525 GPH without media.
This filter has stellar rating and reviews from customers online and is great for tanks that can hold up to 200 gallons of water. It has a built-in 9 Watt UV sterilizer that controls bacteria and algae spores and also helps promote clear water.
The filter has a self-priming pump that eliminates the need for manual siphoning, single valve disconnect and priming pump was routine.
Conclusion: Aquarium care for beginners
Hopefully, the above aquarium care for beginners article has given you a valuable insight into aquarium care for beginners, you can start your new and exciting journey as a pet parent by just following the tips listed in this article and you will be well on your way to creating an amazing and healthy environment for your new pet fishes. If you have any more suggestions or queries that you would like to bring to our attention, please state them in the comment section below or subscribe to our annual newsletter. So? What are you waiting for ? Go ahead, and create a comfy home for your fish pets.