Starting a new aquarium can be a challenging task. To ensure the health of the animals and the sanity of the owner, you should consider the level of care you’re willing to provide the aquarium, the type of animals you can keep, the size aquarium you will need and how many fish you can keep, given all other factors. The chart below is from information gathered from the New Aquarium Set-Up articles from Drs. Foster and Smith. Follow the chart to determine what aquarium setup is right for you.
LED lighting is becoming a popular alternative way to light aquariums, however many LED fixtures may not be ready to grow corals in reef aquariums.
Lack of the correct variety in light spectrum and less water penetration can reduce coral and plant growth, both of which are things to consider when thinking of buying LED lighting.
“If you want to get the quality of a fluorescent, with the same type of spectrum, you’d have to buy a more expensive LED,” Ian Higby, an aquatics specialist at Pet World Inc., Lawrence, Kan.
Vinton Ebling, owner of Paradise Aquatics, Overland Park, Kan., said a full spectrum LED lighting fixture can cost as much as $600, where a comparable metal halide lighting setup will cost about $350.
If you notice you aquarium fish acting or looking different, it may be ill, which can often lead to death. Early recognition of illness is important to restoring your fish back to health.
Like humans, fish are more susceptible to illness when they’re under stress, Hannah Owens, a graduate student of ichthyology at the University of Kansas, said. “They’re just like people. When it’s finals week and your not sleeping and eating right, you get sick.”
“You can’t just call fish sickness one thing,” Owen Hurst, sales manager at Pet World, Lawrence, Kan., said. “As fish’s immune systems become weaker they become more susceptible to more things.”
Sickness among fish can be difficult to diagnose, so close observation is important. “Watch its behavior, is it swimming, is it lying on the bottom, is it eating, is it gasping for air,” Owens said.
There are many different kinds of sicknesses that can affect aquarium fish. Ick, fin rot, popeye, fungus, neurological disorders and parasites are some of the common things that make fish sick, Hurst said.
“Ick is the most common. There hasn’t been a week where I haven’t seen it,” Luke Ballou, aquatics specialist at Petco, Lawrence, Kan., said. Ballou said he’s learned everything he knows about fish illnesses from helping people work out their problems with their fish during his nearly 4 years at Petco. Ick is a parasitic disease that is highly contagious among fish.
Parasites can be harmful because they take nutrients from the food the host fish eat, which leads to starvation, and can cause internal blockage, which leads to digestive problems, Owens said.
Owens researched the relationship of sharks and parasitic tapeworms while working on her master’s degree. “For sharks, it’s no big deal because they’re huge and the worms are tiny and they’ve evolved together.” Continue reading
CoralVue, manufacturer of products such as the Reef Octopus, Maxspect and Elos products, has launched an updated website. The site now allows customers to view part diagrams and prices for replaceable parts on their products. CoralVue also added a “Store Locator” for potential customers to view demonstrations at their local fish stores.
Sources: Aquanerd, CoralVue