Tips for Having a Saltwater Aquarium Fish

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Saltwater aquarium with orange fishSaltwater aquariums are a beautiful way to bring wildlife in to the home or office; however, unlike fresh water aquariums they require slightly more effort to maintain a balanced ecosystem. Most people choose to have high-end aquarium equipment while also maintaining hired help to check on the pH balance in the tank at least once a month. The amount of work that is required to maintain a healthy saltwater aquarium though, allows the additional benefit of keeping much more tropical and oftentimes beautiful fish. One of the biggest reasons that individuals choose to maintain a saltwater aquarium rather than a freshwater aquarium is the selection of exotic fish that are available to populate the tank. It should be noted though that simply because a fish is a saltwater fish, that does not mean that inhabitants of a saltwater tank should not be selected with care. As with any aquarium the ecosystem of a saltwater tank is extremely delicate and certain varieties of fish have different requirements than others so it is important to research the fish that will inhabit the tank beforehand.

The Selection of Saltwater Aquarium Fish

There is a considerable selection available when it comes to saltwater aquarium fish and the first step in choosing which fish you would like to populate your aquarium is to do a little research. There are some people who would prefer to go with the more exotic fish; however, it is worth noting that if you have little to no experience with a saltwater aquarium you should consider beginning with fish that are recommended for beginners. Beginner fish are fish that require little and are particularly hardy so they make the perfect start for an inexperienced aquarium owner. Even with beginner fish; however, it is important to note that not all fish in this category are compatible.

Beginner Fish

Ocellaris Clownfish

The ocellaris clownfish is the fish that is typically referred to as simply a clownfish and this peaceful fish grows to a size of 3 ½ inches. The fully grown clownfish requires an aquarium of around 20 gallons and it is completely compatible with tanks that feature reefs. This easy to care for fish feeds on an omnivorous diet and requires a tank temperature of between 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Blue Tang

The blue tang fish is a particularly popular fish for many salt water aquarium owners due to its bright blue coloring and exotic appearance. The blue tang is a peaceful fish and it grows to a full size of 1 inch, yet it requires a minimum tank size of 180 gallons. These beginner fish are easy to care for and feed on an herbivorous diet. The blue tang requires an aquarium that has a temperature of between 72 and 78 degrees and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Clown Goby

The clown goby is just one breed of goby that can live in a saltwater aquarium and most goby’s are easy to care for. When fully grown, clown goby’s measure around 2 inches long and can survive in a 10 gallon tank. Clown goby fish are peaceful fish and should be placed with other peaceful fish in a tank with water between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit. These fish also require a pH of 8.1 to 8.4 and feed on a carnivorous diet.

Firefish

Purple firefishFirefish are a relatively small fish with a maximum size of 3” when fully grown and like the other beginner fish listed here they are easy to care for. A firefish can survive in a 10 gallon aquarium when fully grown and is compatible with reef tanks. The firefish is not an aggressive fish and should be placed in a tank with other peaceful fish that thrive in a water temperature of 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit. The ideal pH for firefish is from 81 to 8.4 and they feed on a carnivorous diet.

Coral Beauty Angelfish

The coral beauty angelfish is an omnivorous fish that requires a saltwater tank of at least 30 gallons to thrive. When fully grown this fish will measure four inches long and is particularly easy to care for. The coral beauty angelfish is a semi-aggressive fish like most angelfish and caution should be used when placing it in a tank with other fish as well as in a tank with a reef. The ideal water temperature for this beginner’s fish is from 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and they require a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Raccoon Butterfly Fish

The raccoon butterfly fish is a brightly colored and peaceful fish that should not be placed with any aggressive breeds of fish. When fully grown this beautiful fish requires a tank that is at least 70 gallons large and it feeds on an omnivorous diet. The ideal water temperature for the raccoon butterfly fish is between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit with a pH between 8.1 and 8.4.

Snowflake Eel

Snowflake eel swimmingThe snowflake eel is a great addition to a saltwater tank for those who wish to have something a little different inhabiting their aquarium. When fully grown this eel requires a minimum tank size of 50 gallons and while they are easy to care for these eels are also semi-aggressive so care should be used when placing other creatures in the tank. When fully grown the snowflake eel measures approximately two feet long and is requires a carnivorous diet. The ideal water temperature for this saltwater inhabitant is between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit and the ideal pH is from 8.1 to 8.4.

Volitan Lionfish

The Volitan lionfish is a much more tropical looking fish than many other beginner fish for the saltwater aquarium. It should be noted that these fish are venomous, carnivorous and semi-aggressive so caution should be used when placing other fish in a tank with a Volitan lionfish. The Volitan lionfish requires a larger tank of 120 gallons minimum size and care should be utilized when placing reefs in the tank with this fish. The lionfish grows to around 15 inches long when full-grown. The ideal water temperature for this saltwater inhabitant is from 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and the ideal pH is from 8.1 to 8.4.

Other Popular Saltwater Aquarium Fish

Not everyone who starts a saltwater aquarium is looking to work with beginner fish and while many of the other popular saltwater aquarium fish can be difficult to care for, doing so is particularly rewarding. Some of the more advanced fish that people choose to populate their aquariums are listed below.

Mombasa Lionfish

The Mombasa lionfish is a semi-aggressive fish that takes a moderate skill level to care adequately for it. When fully grown this fish measures around 6 ¼ inches long and it feeds on a carnivorous diet. As a fully grown fish, the Mombasa lionfish requires a minimum tank size of 50 gallons and care should be used if placing this fish in a tank with a reef. The ideal water temperature for the Mombasa lionfish is between 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Blue Spotted Puffer

Mombasae lionfishMany saltwater aquarium owners like the idea of having a puffer fish in their aquarium and the blue spotted puffer is one of the prettier puffer fish available. This semi-aggressive fish should never be placed in an aquarium with peaceful fish. The blue spotted puffer grows to a maximum size of 5 inches and caution should be used when placing this fish in to an aquarium that includes a reef. This unique fish thrives in water between 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit with a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Black Cap Jawfish

The black cap jawfish is a fish that requires moderate experience to care for it, yet it is a peaceful fish and will thrive in a saltwater aquarium with other peaceful fish. This fish grows to a length of around 4 inches and is happy in a 30 gallon aquarium with or without reefs. The black cap jawfish requires water that is between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit and has a pH of between 8.1 and 8.4. While this is a peaceful fish it does require a carnivorous diet.

Hi-Hat

The hi-hat is another peaceful fish that requires a moderately experienced owner to care for it. These fish are not fish that are compatible with reef tanks and they are carnivorous. At their largest, these fish can grow to 9 inches long and require a tank of at least 70 gallons to thrive. The hi-hat is most comfortable in water that is between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit with a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Wartskin Angler

The wartskin angler may not be one of the prettiest fish in the saltwater aquarium, but it is certainly unique. This fish does require a moderate level of experience from its owner since it is not a particularly easy fish to care for. The wartskin angler is a peaceful fish and does best with other peaceful fish in a 20 gallon or larger aquarium. This fish grows to approximately 4 inches long and can thrive in a reef based tank that maintains a temperature between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Spotted Mandarin Dragonet

The spotted Mandarin dragonet is a beautiful fish to include in any aquarium; however, it is one of the more difficult fish to keep happy and it is not recommended for the first time aquarium starter. This fish grows to a full length of approximately 4 inches and it can thrive in a tank of 30 gallons or more. The spotted Mandarin dragonet is a peaceful fish and requires other peaceful fish to survive; however, it is able to survive in a reef based tank. This uniquely patterned fish thrives in a tank that maintains a temperature of 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Spotted Grouper

The spotted grouper is an aggressive fish that must not be placed in a saltwater aquarium with any peaceful fish since this carnivore will consume them. This grouper can grow as long as a foot and so they do require a larger tank of a minimum size of 180 gallons. It should be noted that these fish are not particularly compatible with reef based aquariums and require a moderately experienced owner to care for them. Spotted grouper require a tank that maintains a temperature of 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit with a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Spotted Sweetlips

The spotted sweetlips is a peaceful fish that requires only expert owners due to the fact that they are particularly difficult to care for. These are carnivorous fish that grow to a maximum size of 2 feet and 5 inches and require a tank of a minimum of 300 gallons. The spotted sweetlips fish does not always do well with a salt water aquarium with a reef and it requires water of a temperature between 72 to 78 degrees and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Zebra Moray Eel

The zebra moray eel is another salt water aquarium creature that adds a little something different to the aquarium. This eel requires an owner with moderate experience since it can be difficult to handle. The zebra moray eel is an aggressive creature and caution should be used when placing other creatures in the tank alongside this eel. The zebra moray eel may or may not do well in an aquarium with a reef but it requires a minimum of 125 gallons of water in its aquarium and will grow to a maximum of 5 feet long. This creature thrives in water from 72 to 78 degrees and requires a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Fiddler Stingray

The fiddler stingray is another creature that gives a different look to a salt water aquarium; however, it requires an expert aquarium owner only since it is a particularly difficult creature to handle. This ray is also a very aggressive creature and caution should be used when placing it in an aquarium with other creatures. The fiddler stingray should not be placed in an aquarium with a reef and with a maximum size of 3 feet when fully grown it demands an aquarium of at least 360 gallons. These rays are carnivorous and require a tank temperature of between 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Marbled Bamboo Cat Shark

The marbled bamboo cat shark is a shark which is one reason that many people desire this creature in their aquarium. This shark is not an easy creature to care for; however, and should not be kept by anyone with less than expert experience in keeping a saltwater aquarium. The marbled bamboo cat shark is an aggressive creature and caution should be used when placing this shark in a tank with any other creature. This shark should not be placed in an aquarium with a reef and it does require a carnivorous diet. This creature grows to around 3 feet 3 inches and requires a minimum tank size of 180 gallons with a tank temperature of 72 to 78 degrees and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Harlequin Tusk

The harlequin tusk fish is a semi-aggressive fish that requires a moderately experienced owner to handle it. This fish grows to a full size of approximately 10 inches long and as such it requires a minimum tank size of 125 gallons. The harlequin tusk may or may not do well in a tank with a reef and it requires a tank temperature of 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Dragon Sea Moth

The dragon sea moth is a rather unique looking creature that captures the attention of anyone who notices this unusual creature in a salt water aquarium. This Cuban fish is a very peaceful creature; however, it requires an owner with expert knowledge of salt water aquarium life since it is not a particularly hardy fish. The dragon sea moth grows to around 7 inches long and requires an aquarium of at least 50 gallons but it can life happily in a reef based aquarium. This fish requires a water temperature of 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Popeye Catalufa Soldierfish

The popeye catalufa soldierfish is a particularly peaceful fish and its bright orange color attracts many salt water aquarium owners to it; however, this fish is rather difficult to handle. The popeye catalufa soldierfish is a venomous fish which is why it is recommended that only experienced aquarium owners take on this fish. This is a carnivorous fish that grows to approximately 7 inches long and requires a minimum aquarium size of 70 gallons with a water temperature of 65 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4.

Which Fish is for you?

Choosing fish for your salt water aquarium is a process that should take a couple of things in to consideration. The first thing that you should take in to consideration when choosing your fish is your experience level. Choosing a fish that requires expert knowledge when you are a beginner at aquarium ownership can result in a quick death for your fish and a lot of frustration for you. Even when picking fish that are “beginner” level fish, there is plenty of choice in regards to the appearance of the fish that you can choose from. After you have selected whether or not you should go with a more advanced type of fish you can begin looking in to whether you prefer more peaceful or more aggressive fish. You should keep in mind that if you choose even one aggressive fish for your aquarium, you should not choose more peaceful fish because the aggressive fish will attack and likely eat the more peaceful fish if they are carnivorous by nature. It is best to cater your aquarium to a certain type of fish or fish that have been proven to live well together. Adding a little diversity to your aquarium can be fun as long as the fish species can successfully live together, so have fun building your underwater paradise!

There are Many Beginner Saltwater Aquarium Fish to Choose From

We have received a number of requests to cover more saltwater aquarium fish suitable for beginners. There are quite a number of saltwater aquarium fish out there that make great beginning fish to aquariums in addition to fish that make good additions to existing aquariums. Below we will cover a few more saltwater aquarium fish that you can consider adding to your tank, these fish are dependent upon your current tank environment but they are all suitable fish for beginners in salt water tank keeping.

Beginner Fish for Saltwater Aquariums

Auriga Butterfly Fish

There are a number of variations when it comes to the Auriga butterfly fish, these variations are both in size and the native habitat of these fish. Currently from many tropical fish stores you will be able to purchase a small, medium or large Auriga butterfly fish from Indonesia; Hawaii, Fiji and Tonga; Papua New Guinea or Sri Lanka. In addition you can occasionally find an extra-large Auriga butterfly fish from Indonesia. Depending upon the size of your tank and existing fish in the community you will need to select the best of these fish for your needs.The Auriga butterfly is a hardy fish species but they are particularly shy and require a tank that provides a number of hiding places to help the fish to feel comfortable. These fish prefer to feed on plankton and frozen, freeze-dried, fresh or flaked food. Many people choose to supplement these fish with vitamin additions in order to boost the fish’s overall health. The average size of the Auriga butterfly fish is as follows: Small: 1-1/2″ to 2-1/4″; Medium: 2-1/2″ to 3 1/2″; Large: 3 1/2″ to 4 1/2″ X Large 4 1/2″ to 6″ This is a peaceful fish species that requires a minimal tank size of 50 gallons and they do not thrive in reef tanks. These omnivorous fish require water temperatures of between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit with a pH between 8.2 and 8.4.

Carpenters Flasher Wrasse

Many people are attracted to the Carpenters Flasher Wrasse because of its beautiful markings and bright colors. These bright and colorful fish are primarily orange with thin blue stripes down the body and a yellow underbelly. The dorsal fins of these fish are spiked and brightly colored also. These fish are particularly easy to care for making them ideal for beginners. The Carpenters Flasher Wrasse is a peaceful fish that is compatible with a reef based tank. These fish prefer water temperatures between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of between 8.1 and 8.4. The minimum recommended tank size for these fish is 50 gallons. This fish that is native to Africa and Indonesia is carnivorous and should have a diet that consists of vitamin enriched frozen mysis shrimp, vitamin enriched frozen brine shrimp in addition to a marine based food such as pellets or flakes.

The Foxface Lo

Many salt water tank hobbyists prefer to keep fish that are brightly colored which leads many of them to pick the foxface lo. This bright yellow fish features a long extended face similar to that of a fox (hence the name) that is white with black markings. This unique looking fish is native to Indonesia and Vanuatu and is a particularly peaceful and easy to care for fish. With that said however, it is important to know that this fish can be difficult to keep in a reef based tank. The foxface lo can grow as large as 9” long and is a venomous fish so care should be taken when deciding to keep this species in particular. This brightly colored fish prefers to live in tanks with a temperature of 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of between 8.1 and 8.4. The foxface lo is a herbivore and prefers to feed upon fresh vegetables and some more undesirable species of algae. These fish have also been known to feed on hard coral polyps. When pairing the foxface lo with any other species caution must be exercised and it is recommended that they be kept with only a few species with which compatibility has been proven to be successful. The minimum recommended tank size for this fish is 70 gallons.

Kaudern’s Cardinal

Kaudern’s cardinal is something of an unusual looking saltwater aquarium fish which is what leads many aquarium keepers to venture in to keeping them. This unique looking fish has rather slender and spiky looking fins and is a brilliant white color with black stripes and bright white spots. This fish is native to Indonesia and grows to a maximum length of approximately 3” long. The Kaudern’s cardinal is a semi-aggressive fish although it is easy to care for and caution must be exercised when introducing any other fish to a tank with the Kaudern’s cardinal in it. This fish prefers a tank temperature of between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH of between 8.1 and 8.4. This is a carnivorous fish and it requires a diet that is rich in meaty foods such as bloodworms and shrimp. The minimum recommended tank size for this fish is 30 gallons.

There are Many More Beginning Salt Water Fish to Choose From

Flame Angelfish

The flame angelfish is a favorite of many saltwater aquarium owners because of their brilliant orange color. This is actually a dwarf angelfish species and has vertical black stripes that run down the body and horizontal black stripes on the dorsal and anal fins. Like all angelfish, the flame angelfish is a semi-aggressive species and requires someone with an experienced hand to care for them. These fish require a moderate level of care and a minimum tank size of 30 gallons. These fish should be placed with caution if they are being put in to a reef tank as they may or may not be compatible. The flame angelfish grows to around four inches long and prefers warmer waters between 72 and 78° F and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4. These are omnivorous fish and feed on marine algae, frozen shrimp, Spirulina and angelfish specialty food. The average price of this large and colorful fish is between $30 to $40 USD.

Golden Angelfish

The golden angelfish is another dwarf angelfish species that is coveted for its bright colors. The body of this fish is a deep orange color with thing yellow stripes that run vertically down the body. These fish are exceptionally difficult to find which is why they are so expensive when purchased from an aquarium specialty shop. The golden angelfish can grow to a maximum size of around four inches long but requires a minimum tank size of 50 gallons in order to thrive. Unlike other angel species, the golden is a peaceful fish but is extremely difficult to care for. These tropical fish thrive in water temperatures between 72 to 78° F and prefer a pH of between 8.1 and 8.4. These are omnivorous fish and are happiest feeding on sponges, angelfish preparations and meaty foods. This fish species retails from anywhere from $100 to $150 USD.

Lemonpeel Angelfish

The lemonpeel angelfish is yet another brightly colored angelfish with a bright yellow body and light blue highlights around the eyes, on the tips of its fins and on its lips. This is a semi aggressive fish and caution should be used when placing it with other fish or in a reef based tank. Lemonpeel angelfish are moderately difficult to care for and require a skilled hand. These large fish grow to a maximum size of six inches long and require a minimum tank size of thirty gallons. The ideal temperature for these tropical fish is between 72-78° F with a pH of 8.1 to 8.4. The lemonpeel angelfish is omnivorous and is happiest feeding on Spirulina, marine algae, seaweed, frozen shrimp and angelfish preparations. The retail price of this fish varies from around $20 to $30 USD.

Red Velvet Fairy Wrasse

The red velvet fairy wrasse is a beautifully colored fish with a bright red coloration at the front of the body and the rest being a bright yellow. The brightly colored scales of this peaceful fish have been noted to change colors depending upon the fish’s mood as well as whether or not it is mating season. During mating season the male red velvet fairy wrasse will appear white in color. This is an easy to care for fish that grows to a maximum size of four inches long. The minimum tank size for this species is fifty gallons. This Sumatran fish is reef compatible and prefers water temperatures of between 72 to 78° F and a pH of 8.1 to 8.4. This is a carnivorous fish that is happiest when fed frozen shrimp, marine pellet or flake food and frozen brine shrimp. The average retail price of this fish is between $70 to $100 USD – males are generally more expensive than females.

Black Cap Basslet

The black cap basslet is a deep water fish species that has a bright purple colored body with a black marking on its head that resembles a cap. These semi-aggressive fish thrive in reef based aquariums and are relatively easy to care for. Native to the Caribbean, these fish prefer warmer waters between 72-78° F. The ideal pH for this fish is between 8.1 and 8.4. The black cap basslet grows to a maximum of four inches long and requires a minimum tank size of thirty gallons. This fish species is carnivorous and thrives on a diet made up of mysis shrimp, marine fish and frozen fish food preparations. The average retail price for the black cap basslet is around $50 USD.

Longnose Batfish

The longnose batfish is a unique looking fish with a flat horizontal body and reddish-brown coloration with a mottled appearance. This fish has an antennae structure on its nose that it uses to lure in live fish which it feeds upon. This fish is not so much of a swimmer as it is a crawler as it uses its fins to crawl along the aquarium floor. When threatened, this fish will bury itself under the sandy bottom of the aquarium. This is a large fish that can grow to a maximum size of nine and a half inches and as such it requires a minimum tank size of one hundred gallons. The longnose batfish is a slow and peaceful fish but it does require an aquarium owner with moderate knowledge of fish keeping. The ideal water temperature for this fish is between 72-78° F with a pH of between 8.1 and 8.4. These carnivores require living food to survive and do best with saltwater feeder shrimp in the beginning and polychaete worms and feeder fish after it has adjusted to aquarium life. The average retail price of this fish varies from $70 to $90 USD.

Panther Grouper

The panther grouper is also called the polka-dot grouper and has a bright white body with black polka-dots all over its body. These fish can reach an incredible one foot, eight inches long and require a tank that is at minimum three hundred gallons. While beautiful, these fish are aggressive and require a moderate level of experience in their aquarium owner to thrive. Panther grouper can be placed in a reef based tank but caution should be taken to monitor their progress. This tropical fish requires warm water temperatures of 72-78° F and a pH of between 8.1 and 8.4. This carnivorous fish feeds on prawns, squid, freeze-dried krill, fresh fish and silversides. The retail price of this fish is between $25 to $30 USD.

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Amy grew up in England and in the early 1990’s moved to North Carolina where she completed a bachelors degree in Psychology in 2001. Amy’s personal interest in writing was sparked by her love of reading fiction and her creative writing hobby. Amy is currently self employed as a freelance writer and web designer. When she is not working Amy can be found curled up with a good book and her black Labrador, Jet.

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10 Comments on "Tips for Having a Saltwater Aquarium Fish"

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Ocean Spirit
Ocean Spirit

The one thing to be aware of when choosing saltwater fish is where they are sourced. Many fish are caught with Cyanide. Try to find fish stores that completely know where their fish are sourced from. The best ones are either aquaculture (clownfish) or netted

Anonymous
Anonymous

This articles gives an excellent introduction to saltwater aquariums and the types of fish which could be used to create a wonderful and vibrant tank. I think it would be most helpful to beginners, although the list of fish and other advice should be re-read and heeded by even the more advanced enthusiasts.

The first thing that the author points out is that it will take some work to maintain a saltwater tank. This is a very key point. Many beginners may be under the false impression that all you need to do is put some water in a tank, add in some salt and then find fish.

Actually, maintaining such a tank is a very delicate balancing act. The first thing to consider is the pH balance of the water must be maintained within a fairly static range. Too high or too low and it can have dire effects on the fish. The specific fish themselves should also be chosen with care, since each has definite requirements and needs. Some do not get along well with others, or may require special diets, etc.

Kathy Faust
Kathy Faust

There are few things as beautiful in a home as a saltwater aquarium, but people need to understand that these are not easy projects to undertake. Unless you are really dedicated, you probably should not even start a saltwater aquarium. The fish are quite beautiful, but this is a high maintenance project.

As for me, I find the tanks very relaxing and gorgeous to observe, but I have a hard time remembering to take my vitamin D once a week, never mind doing all the maintenance that goes into one of these tanks.

A friend of mine has an enormous tank of saltwater fish. He keeps it very well maintained, but that is his personality. It’s not like one of those fish you can just put in the bottom of your flower pot and throw some water in there and call it good to go. While I would never tell someone not to try something they are interested in, I would urge people to do their research before they just jump into something like this. Make sure you are getting everything you need before you actually buy the fish. You also need to make sure that you have the time to tend to your saltwater aquarium. I have a swimming pool that is not nearly as picky as these are and I have a hard time keeping up with it. If you can do this, more power to you!

Anonymous
Anonymous

This article provides a very complete list of some of the best fish which may be chosen for a beginning saltwater aquarium fish tank. The author starts by issuing the caution that maintaining such a tank does require more work than a freshwater tank. An enthusiast must be careful to ensure that the proper pH balance is maintained in the tank, which can be done by using hired help a few times a month (or learning how to do it yourself) along with high end equipment.

I am also glad that the author also mentions choosing fish is not as simple as just finding the first few saltwater varieties you see. There is certainly much that needs to be considered. Many fish have very exacting requirements. This can include the specific pH range in which they will be able to function, special types of foods and diets and a number of other requirements. It is also important to consider how each type of fish gets along with others. Some are friendly and others very aggressive.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Anyone who is thinking about starting a saltwater aquarium should understand that it is not all fun and games. Certainly, the tank itself will provide hours of enjoyment and viewing pleasure once set up. However, there is also a lot of work involved in actually setting it up and maintaining the system.

One area where it really makes a lot of sense to spend some time is the research to choose which fish to put in the tank. The author of this article really went to a lot of trouble to list a number of different fish that might be considered for your new or existing tank. I liked the fact that each fish is given individual consideration and a nice overview.

Some of the important factors that the author mentions are whether or not the fish is easy to care for. This is certainly important. Also, you must pay attention to the temperament of the fish since some are peaceful and others are more aggressive. Never mix peaceful and aggressive fish in the same tank.

Kathy Faust
Kathy Faust

The first saltwater fish tank I ever saw was in a tank that probably held about 50 gallons. It was beautiful. I stared at it for hours that day. The colors were mesmerizing set against a black and white tile floor. I started planning my own saltwater fish tank.

That is when I found out that saltwater fish tanks are a lot of work. They are beautiful, but they are not easy maintenance. I couldn’t even keep cactus alive. I surely wasn’t going to manage a community of beautiful animals that needed more maintenance than I do.

I will keep reading about them and admiring them from afar. I will gain respect for people who can take care of them. I just am not one of those people. In fact, I let my son get about any animal he wants, but I won’t let him get one of these because I know what will happen.

Anonymous
Anonymous

My boyfriend and I currently have two freshwater aquariums. At one time, we even had three. We’re extremely interested in having a saltwater aquarium so that we can enjoy caring for some of the most colorful fish in the world. Freshwater fish are beautiful, but saltwater fish are breathtaking and who wouldn’t want to own a tank filled with all the fish from “Finding Nemo”?

However, we know how hard caring for a saltwater aquarium can be and how expensive saltwater fish are. It’s not uncommon to pay a few hundred for one fish. We’ve looked into a number of systems that help take the work out of caring for a saltwater aquarium. While that’s all well and good, I really want to be able to care of the aquarium ourselves should something go wrong with the system. I’m happy I found this article and learned which fish are good for beginners.

Hopefully, one day, we’ll have the room and budget to start a saltwater aquarium. Until then, I guess we’ll have to enjoy visiting aquariums and window shopping the local fish stores. Because, let us not forget, that these are not only expensive fish, but expensive setups. This is one of the most expensive hobbies you will take on when it comes to owning pets.

Anonymous
Anonymous

The most important thing to really determine right from the beginning is your experience level. Although this has been said before, if you are beginner, start out your tank by choosing fish which are appropriate for a beginner. Choose fish which are hardy, do not commonly get sick and that require very little specific care. The list provided by the author here is quite extensive and detailed. It even lists the average water temperature and PH levels that each fish will require for optimal health.

Rather than providing a detailed critique of the list, I intend to just offer a bit of guidance. Focus on compatibility in terms of size, attitude and diet.

Size is a very important factor to consider when choosing your fish. You want to pick those that will be about the same size not only as juveniles and adults, but also those which will grow at about the same pace. This is not as easy a task as you may think. Some fish start out the same size, but then grow faster than others. If you have such a fish, it could cause a problem. Typically, a much larger fish will dominate the tank. Also, some fish may have a peaceful personality as youngsters, but change into a surly or aggressive adult.

Also pay attention to the typical attitude of each breed of fish you are considering. Fish can be either peaceful or surly or downright aggressive. These attitudes may be caused by the fish being territorial, defensive or even hungry. It is highly recommended to only focus on those generally regarded as peaceful.

Finally, take care to compare the types of diets involved. Generally, be wary of carnivores or predatory fish as they are more likely to attack and eat other types of fish. Additionally, do not choose fish with specialized diets; they may be more difficult to feed and keep alive.

Anonymous
Anonymous

In my opinion, the increased maintenance of such a saltwater tank is worth it for a number of reasons. Most people choose a saltwater aquarium because they are able to pick more colorful and exotic looking fish to populate their tank. This is certainly true and the fish in such a tank are an absolute joy to behold. They will keep almost any enthusiast enthralled for hours on end. Also, the number of possible fish which can be chosen to live in your tank is incredibly varied. You will almost never run out of options.

At the same time, these options mean that you will probably need to spend more time doing research. Do not just pick a fish for your tank because you have heard that it is tropical or lives in saltwater. In fact, there are a number of factors to consider when choosing your fish. You need to think about which types of fish will be compatible with each other. It is a well known fact that certain fish will attack other types, or even each other. Also, each type of fish will require a different level of experience and care. If you are a beginner, it would likely not be a good idea to consider choosing fish which require a lot of care or expertise. All of your fish must be selected with extreme care and an attention to detail.

When researching and choosing specific fish, it is helpful to keep the following general rules and guidelines in mind. First, any fish that will fit into the mouth of another fish will usually end up there. Second, the less related any two fish are, the more likely they are to get along and be compatible in the same tank. Along the same lines, the less two fish resemble each other; the more likely it is they will get along.

Having said all that, the author provides a fairly extensive guide to a number of fish which could be additions to your tank. These are further classified into beginner fish (meaning that they are relatively hardy, easy to care for and appropriate for a beginning enthusiast to use) and then other popular types of fish.

Anonymous
Anonymous

As a saltwater (and freshwater also) aquarium enthusiast, this article was right up my alley. I even learned a thing or two. However, this would an excellent article to guide beginners in the quest for picking the right types of fish for their saltwater aquariums. It also even covers some initial information about what is required to maintain a health tank. Many people think that taking care of these tanks is very easy. In fact, the uninitiated may believe that you simply need to dump in some water and then add your fish. Oh, maybe include some rocks or other types of areas for the fish to play with/in and around.

Sadly, there is much more required than that to have a healthy and thriving tank. You could choose high end equipment which will require a bit less work on your part. Although, if you do go this route, it may be beneficial to have a professional (or hired help) to check the PH balance in the water at least once a month. There are other systems, tanks and equipment which do not cost nearly as much. However, the trade off is that these will require more work to maintain them effectively.

The good news is that all of this is relatively easy to learn. There are a number of really good resources available. These include books and web sites, even downloadable electronic books off the internet. There are forums and groups dedicated just to saltwater aquariums and even those for particular types of fish which are commonly kept in these types of tanks. The bottom line is that if this is something you are interested in, you can teach yourself everything you need to know with a little bit of effort and study. I have a friend who has an interesting theory which may be applicable here. He believes that if you were to read 4 or 5 books on a given topic and absorb a fair amount of that information you will probably be more knowledgeable than 50 percent of the other enthusiasts. If you continued to read and study, you would become an expert after about 1,000 hours have been invested. Finally, if you were to continue and invested a total of 3,000 hours, you would be a virtual master.

According to this friend, this equation is applicable to almost anything. It even works for personal hobbies and business applications. He has applied this theory to topics as varied as fiction writing and even jujitsu and wrestling training.

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