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A is for Aquarium, a home for wayward fish; a more pleasant alternative than ending up a dish!
Most people enjoy beaches, strolling along the beach shore line, collecting shells, and looking at what the ocean has brought ashore and fetched up, but for aquarium hobbyists and enthusiasts, the ocean and its inhabitants is a fascinating place.
Everything about it is exciting! Learning what each piece of equipment does, the roles different livestock play in the ecosystem and just trying to wrap your head around the science of water chemistry is exhilarating. So many recent advancements in aquarium technology has now made it possible and easier to successfully maintain saltwater and reef tanks even for the super-busy aquarist.
When aquarists decide to set up a saltwater or reef tank, they look for color, variety and focus on their preferred species. Lighting becomes very important. The decisions on whether to have a fish only tank? A predator tank? A reef tank? What corals? SPS? LPS? Mixed reef? Aquascaping? Equipment? The selection of their tank inhabitants becomes a very important process. It is important not to get it wrong because it can become a very costly and disappointing experience. Most important of all is the compatibility of the livestock and the size of the tank that is housing the inhabitants.
Some fish grow too large for many or most home aquariums. Some fish are also unsuitable for reef tanks as they will use the corals as food and damage them. So, it is important to always keep in mind that no matter how beautiful the fish is, it’s desirability decreases if it will not cohabitate or get along with other tank mates or eat your corals or other fish.
What every aquarists strives for is a Peaceful Community. And, because most fish are territorial “a go away, get out of my space” attitude, so, in order for other members of the community can settle and find their own space and territory, it is critical and important that the aquarist obtains as much information and education.
When first deciding to set up an saltwater or reef tank, it is as important to write down a list of the tank inhabitants the aquarist wishes to display in their tank, research their compatibility, as it is in the selection of the tank size and equipment. The aquarist should familiarize themselves with which species to introduce first and which species to introduce last. This process can take months and even a year depending on the size tank and how many inhabitants can safely co-exist.
So, there is a lot to consider for the success and health of your display tank and its inhabitants. It is a massive mistake buying an aquarium without an overall cost check. It is a wonderful, satisfying and fascinating hobby. But more importantly, we want to ensure that aquarists practice sustainable fish and reef keeping.
Personally, it is hard for me to make up my mind which is the most beautiful and most desirable as I find them all irresistible. But, then again, this is why aquarists find the need to continue to upgrade to larger tanks and/or have multiple tanks.
By Maria Cardoso | 21 January, 2016