Aquarium Maintenance and Care Tips for Beginners

Setting up an aquarium is a rewarding experience especially with the many available arrays of fishes that you can stock. Fish tanks consist of an ecosystem of plants and animals. Unfortunately it can be hard for beginners who don't understand what types of fish to buy and when and how to perform maintenance. Read on to know a few tips to be a successful fish keeper.

First, it is essential to keep fish healthy and alive. To do this you have to cycle your tank before adding fish to the tank.

Cycling is a process that involves growing of microorganisms in the tank for safety of the fish and breaking down of waste. It is advisable to keep the tank running for a week before you add fish. This is why you are not supposed to the tank and fish on the same day. Majority of aquarium kits come with packets of elements that are used for cycling. If it's not available you can buy one at a pet store or add a small amount of fish food.

More significantly, never cycle the tank with fish in it. It is unhealthy and can cause death of the fish. Purchase a testing kit for monitoring the levels of nitrates, PH and ammonia of the water. Theses chemical compounds come as a result of cycling your tank. Conducting regular checks avoids unhealthy build up of the chemicals. There are over the counter products that are used to keep the levels at normal. However, changing the water is better than adding chemicals to the fish tank. You just have to remove about a third of the water and replace it with clean water. It dilutes the chemicals making it healthier for the fish.

Also, vacuum the gravel to get rid of debris that might have built up at the bottom of the tank. There are water changers and siphons that are used to remove water and get rid of debris concurrently. When purchasing fish, research on the type of fish, how big it grows and the space requirements. Get to know the needs of the fish you are buying to know how safe they will be in your tank. Overcrowded tanks create an unhealthy environment increasing stress, aggression and diseases. It is far much better to have few fish that are healthy. Avoid overfeeding your fish. Excessive food is unhealthy and can lead to diseases. It also causes accumulation of dirt in the tank leading to excessive growth of algae.