If you are considering owning fish, the plethora of fish tank supplies available can be a little daunting. While there are several supplies necessary, you will also find many items in the fish shops that are unnecessary. If you are just beginning, consider the basics necessary and everything else as optional.
If is a good idea to break the supplies down into categories – consider the following categories as you peruse the aisles or web pages of your fish supplier.
• Water filtration – this is rather self-explanatory, as it filters the water. A fish tank is a very delicate contained ecosystem. It is necessary to filter waste, dirt and contaminants out of the water to keep the environment healthy.
• Air pumps – aerate the water. This keeps the water from becoming stagnant. Some filters require air pumps while other filters use water pumps.
• Heaters – fish require water to be at a certain temperature. Specifically, saltwater fish need a constant temperature. This requires a heater (or two for a large tank) to maintain the water temperature that they need to avoid shock and even death.
• Test kits are available to test salinity, pH, ammonia, nitrate and phosphate levels. There are three main methods that test kits use: color comparison, titration and digital (also called electronic). A test kit is important to maintaining healthy water conditions.
Cleaning a fish tank regularly is vital. You should plan to clean your tank at least every three to four weeks and more frequently if necessary. There are several fish tank supplies for cleaning. Some of these include:
• A gravel vac or siphon for vacuuming waste and other debris from the gravel at the bottom of your tank.
• An algae pad or scraper will help you to quickly remove algae from the sides of your tank
• Various brushes and gloves will help you to scrub your tank, filters, pumps and hood.
• Aquatic cleaner should be used only when necessary. Never use household soaps or cleansers. If you have lime deposits, then a cleaner made specifically for aquatic use can help to remove the deposits.
When you are shopping for fish tank supplies, remember that the actual fish food is the main essential for feeding your fish. Be sure to find out if there is a specific fish food for your particular kind of fish. Some people prefer to use things such as automatic fish feeders, feeding rings and veggie or seaweed clips. These are optional accessories. The main thing to remember about feeding your fish is to feed them the right amount of the right food at prescribed intervals.
As you begin your adventure of having fish, you will soon realize that there are gadgets, decorations and gizmos abounding all under the name of fish tank supplies. It can be a very expensive hobby if you purchase every fish item on the market. From an economical standpoint, it is a good idea to procure the essential fish tank supplies first and then add a few optional things as you see fit.