What’s the right type of aquarium for your fish? It depends. You are removing the fish from their natural environment, so you want an aquarium that can replicate that environment as closely as possible. You also want an aquarium that will promote their good health.
Let’s not forget that the aquarium will be part of your home, so it has to perform the role of blending in, but still being a showstopper and conversation piece for anyone entering your home.
How do you go about choosing an aquarium that fulfills both criteria? This is how.
1. Consider Your Budget
Regarding your aquarium, you aren’t only limited by your dreams, you are also limited by your wallet. The translation here is, if you like expensive or larger fish, you have to house them appropriately. They are priced that way for a reason. Larger aquariums too. Both require maintenance. For the fish, that includes the best home to live in with the requisite accessories. If you can’t manage a larger tank and fish, get something cheaper and smaller that may be easier for you to maintain.
It’s unfair to the fish and unhealthy for them when you force them to live in cramped quarters. When you place larger fish in a smaller tank, the water becomes filled with toxic gases quicker, which can cause the fish to become sick and die.
2. How Does The Aquarium Look In Your Home?
Where will you be putting the aquarium? You cannot place your fish in a high-traffic area as this will affect their growth and development. At the same time, you want to put it somewhere people will see it and have it fit in with the decor you already have in your home. If your home is small, go for a smaller, less obtrusive tank that doesn’t take up a lot of space. If your home is larger, you can get a larger tank and even have an aquarium shaped into a design or inlaid in a wall.
3. What Type Of Fish Will You Be Buying?
Different types of fish require different types of water. There are different aquariums designed for each kind. Freshwater fish require a freshwater aquarium. Saltwater fish require a saltwater aquarium. As seen on this guide at fishlab.com/brackish-water-aquarium/, there is a third type of tank designed for fish that can live in brackish water or a mixture of salt and freshwater. As a general rule, if you’re just starting out with fish, you should stick to freshwater species until you gather a bit more experience in caring for them.
4. Where Will The Aquarium Be Placed In The Home?
If you are getting a clear glass or acrylic aquarium, then it cannot be placed in direct sunlight. This will encourage algae growth in the fishes’ environment. It also causes the temperature to fluctuate, which may affect some species of fish negatively.
When filled with water, the weight of an aquarium can be substantial. Make sure the area it is being placed can support the weight. If you need to move the aquarium a lot, consider mounting it on a wheeled holding tray. Also, consider getting an acrylic tray as opposed to glass. Acrylic scratches more easily, but doesn’t shatter and break like glass if there are any accidents while moving.
5. Consider Accessories
According to your budget, you can have your aquarium custom-built, or you can purchase it in a kit for you to assemble. Kits are easier for beginners, but may not come with everything necessary for the fish to be healthy.
A good aquarium should come with accessories like a filtration system and pump to keep the water clean and appropriately oxygenated. It should also have a canopy to keep the aquarium covered and a thermostat to monitor the water to see if it’s comfortable for the fish.
6. Have Different Tanks For Different Purposes
It’s always a good idea to have a few extra tanks on standby for different purposes. If a fish gets sick with something that’s contagious, you can separate them in one of your spare tanks. Same for breeding fish, or more aggressive species that are attacking other fish in the tank.
7. Consider The Shape Of The Aquarium
Different species of fish acclimatize better in different aquarium shapes. More active fish will prefer a longer tank.
Getting the right aquarium for your fish, as you can see, comes down to a variety of factors. Think about the type of fish you have and what they need before purchasing.