There are plenty of types of fish that you can welcome into your home. Marine fish are becoming more and more popular, but is there more to keeping these fish than meets the eye? Here’s everything you need to know about keeping marine fish.
Getting the tank
Of course, the best place to start is by thinking about the type of tank you want to get. There are two types: glass and acrylic. Acrylic aquariums often come in a larger variety of styles and shapes, but they usually cost more than glass versions. It’s also better to choose a larger tank than you would for tropical fish. This means that you’ll need to think about where you will keep your tank before you make the investment.
The initial costs
The tank is the first initial cost, but it doesn’t end there. You will also need to buy all of the equipment that you need to keep your tank up and running as well as everything to fill your tank. This includes the saltwater. It often has to be bought directly from the shop to make sure that it’s stabilized and safe for your fish. Some people prefer to use a natural substrate while others opt for live rocks and corals, which can add to the initial costs.
The ongoing costs
Once you have your tank set up, it’s time to consider the ongoing costs. Marine fish are similar to keeping tropical fish. However, you will need to factor in the price of new water every two to three weeks. Then, there is the money you may need for more coral as well as the extra electricity to power the tank and additional lights.
Selecting your fish
It’s vital to make sure that you know where your marine fish come from before you purchase the new additions. Many are caught from the wild, which can have a significant impact on the environment. Some stores also use sustainable coral choices. This means it’s been harvested after storms when coral has been broken apart. Sadly, some people chip coral off of existing reefs. Sustainability is key when keeping marine fish.
As well as your typical heater and thermometer, you will also need a hydrometer to measure the salt levels and gravity of the water. Powerheads are also vital if you are keeping real coral and live rocks as they help to mimic the current of the ocean. These additions typically require special lighting too to make sure everything can photosynthesize properly. It’s not vital, but some marine tank owners also choose to incorporate a sump. This is a separate tank underneath the main tank that helps filter the water and can keep the other equipment out of the way.
There is plenty to think about when keeping marine fish. Although they can be more of a commitment than other types of fish, marine tanks can be a colorful addition to many homes – as long as they have been sustainably sourced, of course.