Selecting The Proper Tropical Fish Aquarium Tank

This should be the first purchase when someone is first starting out. The aquarium must be suited both, to your own personal needs and foremost, to the needs of the fish that one desires to raise.

The first rule of thumb is to buy the largest aquarium (fish tank) that ones budget and space will accommodate. Do not try to scrimp in this area, remember that setting up an environment which will last for years is priority. Any inadequacies or shortfalls in the tank will be an annoyance that will last for years to come.

Today’s aquariums are much better and more durable than those of the past. To the beginner, the myriad of types of tanks on the market can be confounding and confusing. Basically tanks made of glass come in two types. frame tanks which have frames made of anodized aluminum, plastic or stainless steel and frameless tanks. Both, are sealed with silicon rubber. These tanks cannot rust and scan even be used for salt water use. Frameless tanks come in many different sizes and shapes.
Plastic tanks are just as durable as glass tanks. They can be molded and fused without seams. They have no sharp edges and the corners may be rounded. The plastic should not be too thin or he water pressure may cause the sides to bow out and distort the view of the fish. Care should be taken when cleaning these tanks as they scratch a lot easier than glass. Thick plastic glass tanks will not distort.

Molded one piece glass tanks have essentially gone out of style. They can be used for breeding small fish species. They are very useful when used as isolation tanks for example, when live bearing fish are pregnant. The internal stress factors in molded glass tanks cause larger ones to crack or break. They have to be protected from temperature changes or they will crack. The walls of these tanks are not molded perfectly and cause the fish to be somewhat distorted when viewing them.
Tanks of transparent acrylic plastic have replaced old glass tanks. They are more transparent than glass and less fragile. They are a better insulator than glass. The 3-4 gallon size are ideal as an isolation or quarantine tank. It is recommended you buy one to be used in conjunction with your main tank. These tanks are not scratch resistant and are hard to clean. They should not be used as a permanent display aquariums.

It is being advised that someone start out with a frameless of all glass tank. Most aquariums are taller than wide which gives a larger viewing surface of the fish and fits in with most modern furniture. So, the greater the floor area, the healthier its inhabitants (both fish and water plants). A greater floor area promotes better possibilities for arranging plants and tank decorations. It allows for bottom or base (scavenger) fish to stake out their territory. Lighting is more effective than in a tall narrow tank. Distances appear shorter under water and any aquarium will appear narrower when filled. A key factor in assessment of a stocking density is that the surface area of the tank is very important. The water air interface is where gas exchange occurs. The greater the surface area, the greater the gas exchange which translates to healthier fish that can be continually raised in the tank.

The size of the tank, from having taken into account the size of fish that will be kept, and the number of fish wanted, must be well thought out without exclude the behavioral patterns of the fish. Many species of small fish live in schools and need adequate space. Fish with territorial behavior need more space. Do not start with too small of fish, which live in schools and need adequate space. Fish with territorial behavior need a lot of space. Don’t start with too small of a tank as it is easily over populated. The longer the tank will always mean that the larger amount of water offers for a more stable environment. Such, ecosystem is more immune to mistakes and changes to the water will be more subtle. The larger the tank, the safer the fish.

When calculating the space needed for fish, a good rule of thumb is to allow for one gallon of water for each inch of fish length. This does not include space taken up by gravel or ornaments in the tank and should be taken into account.
The weight of the tank must be taken into consideration. The stand must be sturdy enough to support the aquarium that’s filled with water, sand and ornaments. Calculating weight accurately prior set up will pay off in the long run. The floor must be structurally sound and level to support this total weight. Consult with a local builder or architect if there are any concern/question about ones current structure and expectations of accommodate any such, weight of the aquarium.

Occasionally an old tank may be found at a garage sale or flea market and if it leaks it can be repaired by sealing it with an acetic acid based, silicone rubber which can be found at a local hardware building supplies store. Remove all traces of dirt and grease of the affected area using an alcohol based sterile and lint free cloth. Apply silicone rubber smoothing with a finger. Wash hands and let the maintenance dry for at least 24 hours.

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