A Nano Reef For You

Nano reef aquariumMaintaining a nano reef tank has become a growing area of interest for those who like to keep aquariums as part of their home or work environment. The special attraction of live coral has a strong appeal for those who love having aquatic life around them.

The beauty of live coral can draw an aquarium aficionado to the possibilities of keeping a live mini-reef. But for the beginner in this niche of fish-keeping, there are some key things to learn before spending the money on live coral.

Just What Is a Nano Reef Tank? 

A reef tank is a saltwater or marine aquarium that contains live corals specifically, along with other marine invertebrates. It can include such fish that help maintain the environment of a tropical coral reef. This type of aquarium will need proper lighting, a very stable water chemistry, and continual water movement. The selection of which reef animals to include must be done carefully, to make sure that they will thrive together in the same environment.

A nano reef should not be regarded as a toy version of an ocean reef. A well-kept nano reef is a full-fledged marine habitat, that has to be carefully maintained. None of the tasks involved in keeping a tank reef are difficult, it is just that they must be performed on schedule. The environmental balance needed to keep your coral alive has to be watched over.

Getting Started 

The first thing you need to select when planning a nano reef tank is what size of aquarium you want to use. Typically, anything under 37 gallons would fall into this category. Some good starter sizes are considered to be a standard 10 gallon, 15 gallon or 20 gallon tank. Because of the growing popularity of reef-keeping, the beginner may actually be able to find product packages that include the compact high intensity lamps, specialized filters and smaller water pumps the reef tank would require. Choosing the proper equipment will keep your nano reef habitat in the most viable condition.

Challenges in Keeping a Nano Reef 

A nano reef will not take care of itself. In fact, because it is a smaller sized aquarium, the keeper will have to pay greater attention to the basics of the water quality in the tank.  You may have to check the water chemistry twice a week, even changing the water once a week. There are many chemical levels that have to be checked, in order to keep your coral thriving. Even slight changes in temperature can have an effect on your nano reef.

Given the smaller size of the tank, and the fact that it is a marine environment, the choice of inhabitants needs to be carefully considered. The smaller sized fish, such as clownfish or gobies, are a better choice. But in any case, you need to be certain that the inhabitants can get along well in the limited space. Get the advice of an expert on which species should do well in the presence of the coral.

Something Fishy: Freshwater Fish For Beginners

Goldfish in an freshwater fish aquariumWhen a beginner decides to enter the world of fish-keeping, one of the biggest questions involves the choice of what type of fish to keep. There are the obvious questions about the size of the first tank, if it will be freshwater or salt water, and whether or not it will be a cold water or heated water tank. Even that matter might surprise a beginner, for most people do not think about the salinity and temperature of a water environment.

Choosing Freshwater Fish

Choosing a heated aquarium would allow the beginner to select from more varieties of fish. But one of the most familiar types of freshwater fish for beginners is a cold water fish: the Gold Fish. So selecting the animal you want to be spending time with will affect the temperature of the habitat the fish will live in, as well as determine any additional residents you might choose to add.

Warm Water Fish

There are several options for the beginner who chooses to have a warm water aquarium. A broad selection of such fish could include Danios, Black Mollies, Black Skirt Tetras, Kuhli Loaches, Platies, and Swordtails.

Swordtails are a popular choice for beginners both for their dramatic appearance and because they are very hardy and do well in community aquariums, where they share the space with other types of fish. The name of this fish comes from the shape of the lower lobe of the male’s tailfin, which is elongated. The females tend to be larger than the males and lack the same length of “sword”. Although the wild form of the fish is an olive green, captive breeding has developed many colors and patterns. It is an omnivorous eater, meaning it will dine on anything, both plants and small crustaceans and insects.

Mollies are also easy to keep. For the beginning fish-keeper who wants a home-grown population, Mollies are prolific breeders. Although Mollies are generally compatible tankmates with some other fish, because of their energetic nature, they can be mildly aggressive and chase the other fish. They would certainly not be a boring choice for the aquarium of a novice.

Cold Water Fish

Another option for someone starting out with aquarium fish is to choose cold water freshwater fish. This choice would mean a little less work in paying attention to the temperature of the water, so if limited time for maintenance care is an issue, these fish are worth considering. Popular choices are White Clouds, Bloodfin Tetras, and the very familiar Gold Fish.

The hardy Bloodfin Tetras are usually kept in groups, most typically a school of five or more fish. They’re very sociable creatures and prefer the upper reaches of the aquarium. Their silvery bodies with their tailfins splashed with red make them very decorative in a tank. They do, however, like to nibble on the longer flowing fins of other fish.

And of course, how could anyone not consider Gold Fish? It was one of the earliest fish to be domesticated, so there is a long history of keeping Gold Fish. The history alone would be a source of enrichment to the novice who chooses to keep Gold Fish. This small carp has been bred into a variety of sizes, shapes colors and skin patterns. It would never be a boring choice. The one thing to be careful about with Gold Fish is that they are opportunistic feeders and will easily over-eat. But with a little care and planning this need not be a problem.

Keeping fish can be a soothing and relaxing hobby. If you consider adding an aquarium to your home, especially if you have never kept fish before, seek the advice of experts who can help you with the selection of size of tank and type of fish. Consult the team at Aquatech Aquariums and begin to enjoy the presence of an aquarium in your life.