Aquarium tips: essential information
The most common cause of fish diseases is stress. The cause of stress can be the wrong environment and food or the wrong choice of fish species-some species can not coexist in the same aquarium. Maintain the well-being of fish in the aquarium is not difficult, if you pay attention to the following points:
First, the aquarium itself. From what aquarium you choose depends on its future location, the necessary equipment and species of fish. One of the main requirements – the aquarium should be in a suitable place and on a stable surface, where it can not be accidentally touched. It is also important to avoid drafts and direct sunlight. The size of the aquarium should correspond to the type of fish you choose. If you choose a small aquarium (about 75 liters) – then you will fit small fish. If you want larger fish, then be prepared to buy a larger aquarium when your fish grow up. Of great importance is the appropriate equipment, suitable for the size of your aquarium and the type of fish. Heaters and filters must be the right size to maintain the right amount of water and the right conditions. Large fish (such as goldfish) produce a sufficiently large amount of waste and therefore require a higher level of filtration to keep the water clean. In addition, larger fish require a larger volume of water per fish compared to smaller fish. Goldfish and other large fish, such as Oscars, need 30-40 liters of water per individual so that they can grow to maximum size.
It is very important to choose the right decor for the aquarium, as it not only gives it a beautiful look, but also provides places where fish can hide. The decor is very important-it is necessary to organize shelters for the fish that need it, and at the same time leave enough free space, as well as choose the right soil – sharp gravel is not suitable for bottom fish and live plants. There are many types of soil, you should choose the most suitable for the fish that you plan to buy. Plants are an important part in aquariums. Fish and plants complement each other in some aspects. Plants provide shade, shelter and food for some species of fish. Well-lit plants release oxygen, which is necessary for fish, and absorb the carbon dioxide that fish produce. Plants also recycle nitrogen-containing fish waste, using as nutrients for growth, and thus help prevent the accumulation of toxic nitrogen in the aquarium. There are a huge number of plants available that are suitable for different types of water. Many plants grow well and require almost no additional effort. Plastic plants are perfect for arranging places where fish can hide, if you do not want to completely fill the aquarium with plants, but they will not consume nitrogen-containing substances from the water, which can lead to excessive growth of algae. Therefore, it is recommended to add at least a few live plants.
Maintenance-for fish and for you it will be better to carry out maintenance of the aquarium gradually but regularly. In nature, fish live in rivers and lakes, which are an open ecosystem. In other words, they are constantly cleaned with fresh running water, which also helps to remove waste. In addition, the number of fish per unit area in a river or lake is always much lower than in an aquarium, so the rate of waste accumulation there is a much smaller problem. An aquarium is a closed ecosystem, so in order to maintain a healthy environment, it is necessary to organize a waste disposal system as close to the natural one as possible. Especially in new aquariums, it is necessary to regularly check the water quality – for this there are various easy-to-use kits to check the pH, nitrogen, nitrate and nitrite (in addition, the water can be checked in a local aquarium store). To make your aquarium look perfect, you will need to spend a little more than 15-20 minutes a week. To avoid stress in fish, it is necessary to change about 10% of the water in the aquarium once a week, or 25% of the water every two weeks, adding dechlorinated water of the same temperature to the aquarium, while cleaning the gravel from dirt with a siphon. Only cold tap water should be used, heating it or mixing it with hot boiled water. Hot tap water may contain too much rust and other contaminants. It is also necessary to remove algae from the glass with a clean hard washcloth. It is necessary to use a washcloth of the material that is most suitable for the material from which the aquarium is made-glass or acrylic. It should be a separate washcloth, not the one used for washing dishes. And finally, you need to wash the filters from the dirt with water just drained from the aquarium.
A varied diet is as important for fish as it is for humans. The constant feeding of the same can cause deterioration of fish health. The basis of the diet of fish should be high-quality food in flakes or granules, to which should be added fresh food-bloodworms, Daphnia or shrimp, sold frozen or fresh. Many species of fish also eat various kinds of vegetables, such as peas or corn (previously peeled, since it is not digested), tomatoes, lettuce (except iceberg, which is also not digested), zucchini, carrots and potatoes (which need to be boiled a little to make them softer). Some things can be “grown” on their own – for example, by placing a bucket of water in the garden, and after a while there will be Daphnia and mosquito larvae, which can be caught with a small net. The amount of food should be such that the fish ate it for 2-3 minutes. It should be remembered that the stomach of fish approximately the same size as their eyes. For small fish it will be better if feeding occurs in small portions a couple of times a day, large can be fed less often, but in larger portions. Large individuals need to be fed only once every few days! Do not overfeed the fish, as this can cause digestive problems and, as a result, lead to contamination of the aquarium with uneaten food or waste. For most fish it would be useful if every couple of weeks they don’t eat.
Compatible fish species. If small fish do not always feel that larger fish can eat them, they will be subject to stress regardless of your care efforts. So should keep small fish only together with small fish, and big aggressive fish either quite separately, either with other such same large and aggressive. The main rule to remember – if one fish can eat another, it will definitely do it! There are always exceptions to every rule, and it is certainly possible to find calm specimens among aggressive species of fish, as well as to meet very aggressive ones among those species that are usually calm. Most of the fish sold are fry, and therefore they behave quite differently from adults. For young fish in the wild, it is beneficial to stick together, it makes it easier to find food and shelter, but when they grow up, most of them have a need for their own territory, and some fish can be very aggressive when fighting for it. Shallow water fish, such as Tetra and Barbus, should be kept in groups of 5-6 individuals, which will allow them to behave naturally. Tiger barbs can be especially dangerous to other fish if they are kept too small.
You should spend a few minutes every day inspecting your fish to make sure they are healthy and alive. If there is a suspicion that something is wrong with any of them, you should make sure that all the equipment is working, check the water and carry out its partial replacement. The drug should only be used if you have detected a specific disease.