Archive for August, 2006

Fish Photography

Fishes are perhaps one of the hardest subjects to photograph. It requires much patience and knowledge to get the results you want. I can’t claim to be the world’s best fish photographer, but I can share with you some basic techniques that will make your first fish photography session a less frustrating one.

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Fish Photography: Basic Guide to Photographing Fishes

What You Should Know About Feeding Tropical Fish

What You Should Know About Feeding Tropical Fish

By Taylor Jones

No matter what type of fish you have, whether it’s an anemone, coral or crustacean…they will fall into one of three types of feeder.

Carnivores. These types of feeders eat other fish. They are all either predators or scavengers. Predators like to hunt for their food, so they may be uninterested in what you’re feeding them, if they want to hunt instead. Once a predator has eaten, it may not feel the urge to eat again for a few days. Scavengers are more opportunistic, and usually prefer to eat the leftovers left by predators.

Herbivores. These types of feeders eat many marine plants and algae. To find their food, they spend their days moving around and grazing, picking up food whenever they can find it.

Omnivores. These types of fish are a mixture of the two above. They like to eat a combination of corals, crustaceans, invertebrates and also plants and algae.

It’s important to remember that when you put food in your tank, many of your fish will ignore it for a while first. Because they aren’t “fed” when they are in the ocean, they just aren’t accustomed to being served food. Some of your fish will eventually learn that you are giving them food, but many others won’t.

Herbivores and omnivores tend to adapt to being tank-fed quicker than other types of feeders. However, some breeds, Angels comes to mind, are used to finding their food on the ocean floor rather than free floating, so it will take a little long for them to understand.

How often should you feed your fish?

It’s a good idea to stick to feeding your fish just once a day, and to feed them no more than they can eat in one minute. To some people this may seem like not enough, but if your fish aren’t hurrying to eat up the food within a minute, they simply aren’t hungry enough to need feeding.

Learn more about keeping tropical fish here: tropical fish

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Aquariums – The Different Kinds

Aquariums – The Different Kinds

By Michael Russell

There are many different types of aquariums. There is pretty much one for each level of enthusiast and not all aquariums are for fish. There are aquatic plant aquariums as well and they are very beautiful.

One of the simplest of aquariums is a fish bowl. A fish bowl can even be part of a table arrangement. When one chooses a fish bowl it should be a big one. At least a gallon. You’ll also need a small net and two 1 gallon bottles of drinking water that is not distilled or de-ionized, as tap water isn’t safe for your fish. Even if water is treated with water conditioners it still wouldn’t be safe. You will also need some floating fish food. You will need to fill your fish bowl 2′ form the top of the bowl. Then you will need to cover your bowl with a clean plastic cover. Sometimes a clean lid from a coffee can will do. You don’t want your fish to jump out or another pet jumping in! You will need to replace about 20% of the water twice weekly and you can make your own bottled water by using the following method. Fill a bottle with tap water and leave about 2″ of empty space at the top of the bottle. Add about five drops of water conditioner and then replace the cap tightly. You will need to let the bottle of water sit for at least three days before you use it for your fish.

There are also cool water aquariums. These aquariums sit at room temperature and do not require a heater. You need an aquarium and a cover. You should get an aquarium stand as well. You will need a five inch fish net, water conditioner and some food to feed your fish. . Make sure you read all the instructions from your aquarium and water conditioner. Make sure your aquarium is running for at least three days before you add any fish. Only add one fish at a time and wait for at least three weeks between fish. There is a maximum of one 1 foot fish per gallon. Don’t overcrowd your fish.

A Warm Water Aquarium will require more skill to maintain than a cool water aquarium. You’ll need an aquarium, an aquarium cover, an stand and a power filter with a BIO-Wheel. You’ll also need a 5-inch fish net and a bottle of water conditioner as well as fish food, such as floating flake food and freeze dried blood worms.

One other type of aquarium is the betta fish vase. This has become increasingly popular. Often times buyers of a Betta Fish Vase have been told that the Betta can live by eating the lily roots, this is a mistake. The Betta will eat the roots, but only out of desperation and it will not be a healthy fish.

The Betta should be fed floating food that is labeled for Betta Fish and freeze dried blood worms, which are actually mosquito larvae. Betta Fish usually do much better in a large fish bowl than in a vase. So if you happen to receive one, your fish may be better off if moved to a bowl. Please think twice before offering one as a gift.

Michael Russell

Your Independent guide to Aquariums

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Which Fish Tank Heater is Best?

Which Fish Tank Heater is Best?

By Keith Londrie

Buying a new fish tank heater can sometimes be perplexing due to all of the options that are available. There are a couple of places that you can go for help when looking to purchase a fish tank heater. It is essential that if you do not know what anything about fish tank heaters that you do a lot of research or seek the advice of an experienced professional. Friends or neighbors experienced with fish tanks can prove to be valuable resources.

These resources can be found in a number of places, and most of them are free of cost. A fish tank heater is very important to the overall health of your fish, so you want to make sure that you get the set up that is appropriate for your tank. Your fish need a certain temperature in order to thrive and the correct fish tank heater will make that happen for you.

The first place you may want to go to for help is your local pet store. They usually have someone who can help you pick out a fish tank heater. Be sure to take the model information of your aquarium, so they can help you to pick out the right heater. Most of the time, you will get the fish tank heater with your tank, but sometimes this is not true. Of course it is easier to buy a heater at the same time as buying the tank. This way you can have everything you need in order to choose the fish tank heater that is right for you. This will not be an issue for all tanks, as some come equipped with their own heaters that are sized for the particular tank you are purchasing.

If you do not have a local pet store that you can go to for advice, be sure to check the internet. If you type “fish tank heater” into your favorite search engine *mine is Google), you will have enough information to keep you busy for at least a couple of hours. Search some of the sites and print out the important information. Keep any information that may be useful when choosing which fish tank heater to buy.

If you are looking to buy a fish tank heater, remember to get advice from a professional. Both pet stores and the Internet are a great place to start. You can even search Ebay and other auction sites on the internet.

Keith Londrie II is a well known author. For more information on Fish Aquariums, please visit for a wealth of information. You may also want to visit keith’s own web site at

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Betta Fish in the Aquarium

Betta Fish in the Aquarium

By Magne Bjorklund

Betta fish are also known as the Siamese fighting fish or Betta Splendens. The fish actually originated in Cambodia, Thailand and will only grow to about three inches or seven centimeters. These are great pets to have for younger children or just as a first pet. They are not too peculiar about anything, and are not that much upkeep, but most fish aren’t. A good healthy betta will live about two to three years.

However, like most fish, they can get many bacterial infections or funguses growing on them. If you would like a tank of betta fish, you will need to know that males cannot be kept in the same tank. They are extremely jealous and are prone to fight because betta fish are very territorial.

Bettas are semi-aggressive fish so it’s best that you keep them in a tank with appropriate species as well. If you want to mix betta fish will other fish, you should know that betta fish are top dwellers so you will want to mix them with middle and bottom dwellers to give your tank fuller look. Depending on the amount of fish, you will need at least a three-gallon tank for betta fish. However, the more you add to the tank, you will need more water space.

Bettas are very colorful and their fins are very long flowing. Bettas are actually one of the most well-known aquarium fish and range in colors. You will find many betta fish with blues, purples, reds, and even white. To tell the different between the two sexes, you will want to pay close attention to the length of the fins and the colors of the fish. Females are dull and not very colorful and have shorter fins. You will also notice that a healthy female betta will display some horizontal stripes.

Bettas are a freshwater fish, which means you will want to fill the tank with some filtered tap water. In nature, you would find betta fish in rice paddies and shallow ponds or maybe even a slow moving stream. They are use to not having the depth of water, but they key to betta fish knows that they are tropical. In their native lands, the water could often get as high as 85F. Bettas need heat to survive and cannot be in water that is below 75*F. The reason why betta fish are not recommended to be kept in a small bowl is because it’s harder to control the temperature. Small fish bowls heat up quickly, but they lose their heat just as fast. In addition, they need a lot of surface space of the tank because they have special organs that allow them to breath directly from the surface and cannot take in oxygen from the water.

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Starting a Freshwater Aquarium

Starting a Freshwater Aquarium

By D Green

So you have decided to start an aquarium fish hobby, but now you need to know how to set up all that equipment. Does it matter what order things get done? Yes it does, and it matter how it is done too. If you get your new aquarium off to a proper start, you will have a successful, relaxing hobby. If you start off on the wrong foot, you will run into problems for a while down the road, wasted money, dying fish, smelly water… you may even give up! It is very important to follow proper steps, here are some guidelines that you should follow:

Step 1: Make sure the aquarium stand is level. This is very important for even weight distribution so that your aquarium does not crack.

Step 2: Clean out your new aquarium with cool clear water and a cloth. Do not use any soaps or cleaners. Make sure to use a commercial aquarium cleaner product if you are cleaning out a used fish tank.

Step 3: Attach the background to the aquarium with clear packing tape.

Step 4: Rinse the gravel or sand with cool water. Hot water can cause the epoxy on colored gravel to peel off.

Step 5: If you are using an air pump with an air stone, run the airline and connect them together.

Step 6: Add the gravel or sand. One pound of gravel per gallon of water is all you need.

Step 7: Fill your aquarium up ¾ with water.

Step 8: Install your filter system.

Step 9: Put the heater in place and let it sit in the water in the tank for at least ½ an hour before plugging it in. This prevents the glass cracking due to thermal differences.

Step 10: Decorate the aquarium.

Step 11: Fill the aquarium up the rest of the way, up to the black trim to hide the water level.

Step 12: Add water conditioner and other additives.

After you are finished setting up the aquarium let it run for 24 hours before you add fish. As long as the aquarium equipment works properly and the temperature is stable and all of the, you are ready to add some fish.

By following the professional advice from, your hobby will get off to a good start and you will learn how to properly take care of your fish and have a beautiful, gleaming fish tank that is sure to be the centerpiece of any room. Be sure to consult for free professional advice and useful information for all your freshwater and saltwater aquarium needs.

D Green is a professional aquarium hobbyist with + 15 years experience. For more advice and aquarium maintenance tips, go to

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Decorating Your Tropical Aquarium

Decorating Your Tropical Aquarium

By Lee Dobbins

Having a tropical aquarium can be a fun hobby as well as a great way to add a decorative focal point to any room. Everyone knows that filtration and lighting are key elements to an aquarium, but many people don’t realize that the “decorations” in your tank also have an important function in the tank. Aside from making your aquarium look great, decorations can provide important hiding places for your fish.

Gravel comes in many colors and styles and is key to the look of your tank. If you want a colorful tank, you can get gravel in almost any color you want. If you prefer a more natural look, you can get white, off white or even gravel that looks like stone.

Aside from being decorative, gravel is also functional. Gravel plays in important role in the biological filtration of your tank as well as under gravel filtration if you have that type of system. It can also provide an anchor for root systems of live plants so it is important to be sure you choose the right type of gravel. It’ best to choose a gravel that is 4 to 6 millimeters, especially if you have an under gravel filter as this will help with water flow. Those neat looking shiny marble type stones you see are not recommended for gravel, but if you really like the look, you can scatter some on top of the gravel.

Rocks add a natural look to your tropical aquarium and provide a place for fish to hide behind. Rocks can also be handy as a surface for some types of aquarium plants to grow on such as Java Moss. You can buy interesting rocks in all shapes and sizes at your aquarium store. If you use rocks from your own yard, make sure you clean them thoroughly and rinse off any soapy restudy before putting them in the tank.

Bogwood is another great addition to a tropical aquarium and can help give your fish lots of places to hide and swim around in. This type of wood can last a long time in your tank and is available in most fish stores. It’s probably not a good idea to use wood you find in the woods or your yard as it can have parasites or other things that are not suited for tropical fish.

Live plants are a great way to enhance the natural look of your tropical aquarium while also helping to improve the water quality and providing the fish with a natural cover and spawning area. If you have ever tried to keep live plants and found they wilt and turn pale after a couple of weeks, this is probably because you have not provided them with enough (or the right kinds) of light. Most plants have specific lighting requirements and you may simply need to buy a different bulb for the tank. Once you do that, you will find live plants are easy to grow and will interest to your aquarium.

If you like a more traditional decorative look for your tropical aquarium, you may want to add in some interesting décor such as sunken treasure chests, underwater divers or greek ruins.

Your tropical aquarium can be decorated for any look you want as long as you be careful not to add anything that would be toxic to the tank. Be sure to clean and rinse anything you plan to add so as to not contaminate the tank.

Lee Dobbins writes for where you can get more articles on tropical fish and aquarium care.

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Introduction To Clownfish

Introduction To Clownfish

By Keith Quince

Clown fish are known technically as Anemonefishes and are a subfamily of damselfish, in the pomacentridae family. There are 26 unique species of ‘Clownfish’, 25 of them being in the Amphiprion genus and only 1 in the Premnas genus. They are typically a small fish, mature males only growing anywhere from 2 to 5 inches in length.


Clownfish are only found in the tropical waters of the Indian or Pacific oceans, and the Red sea. These climits provide a suitable environment for enemonefishes due to their warm temperatures. Clownfish tend to be bottom dwellers, and most notably reside in inshore reefs, specifically inside sea anemones. The anemone provides protection for the Clownfish both by enabling the fish to hide, and with it’s poisonus tenticles, keeping other fish away. There is no definite information why the Clownfish is not stung by the anemone, but many theories exist.

Prey or Preditor?

In nature a clownfish will attract it’s pray by swiming around it’s anemone and displaying it’s bright colors. Once the victim, all the time thinking that he is the preditor, begins to aproach, the clownfish will recede into the anemone with his prey following closely behind. The sea anemone once in contact with the ‘preditor’ will sting, kill, and begin to eat the prey. This leaves the leftovers for the Clownfish to snack on. Other forms of food are planktonic crustaceans and algae that may develope on coral or nearby rocks. Anomenes themselves may provide food as the clownfish will pick at and consume dead tenticles.


This fish is a very good first choice for saltwater tanks, which is one of the reasons they have become so popular in the united states and parts of europe. Part of their suitability is found with anemonefishes having a very small territory; which is good for the small area offered in fish tanks. The substrate area of tank, meaning the area on the bottom of your tank adjusted for protruding rocks and sunken ships, is more important then the total volume of the tank. A 20 gallon tank would be considered the minimum recommended size for Clownfish. Living peaceably in your fish tank a Clownfish would require aprox. 14 hours of light and 10 hours of darness every day. These amounts may be adjusted and are only suggestions. Be carefull of high nitrate levels. Mature Clownfish can sometimes tollerate these levels, but the larva and babies will almost certainly not. Include a large variety of food when feeding Clownfish. Feedings should include live brine shrimp, frozen food, algae and the traditional flakes. Being that clownfish will have no preditors in a fish tank a sea anomone is not requird to protect them.


Many people believe anemonefishes will not breed without the presence of a sea anemone, but this is not the case. After some time, a particular spawning site will be chosen. This spawning site will remain the same throughout the life of the Clownfish pair. Clownfish will spawn all year round laying their eggs in large batches. In the wild eggs are normally laid on coral or rock that is near the anemone, though in your tank they may be laid anywhere. Once laid by the female, the male clownfish assumes the job of gaurding the eggs until they hatch, typically 4 or 5 days aftwards. When clownfish reach sexual maturity they will strike out on their own, searching for a vacant sea anomone. Clownfish may be expected to live around 3 to 5 years in captivity.

Find more detailed and exciting articles about saltwater fish tanks or saltwater fish.

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Aquarium Plants: One of the Best Ornaments in an Aquarium

Aquarium Plants: One of the Best Ornaments in an Aquarium

By Low Jeremy

Everybody understands the reason why most plants can be seen in many aquariums. Healthy plants and their lush are beautiful to look at when they are in an aquarium. They also create a natural setting in the aquarium.

Most of the fishes feel secure, less stressed and safe whenever they have plants to hide in. Some species of fish do not survive in an aquarium without any plants.

Aquarium plants will not only give the fishes a helpful shelter and make your aquarium look attractive but they can maintain the quality of the water as well. Plants and fish both exist on the wild and they will surely match well in your aquarium.

The wastes discharged by the fish contain compounds that are useful for the plant’s nutrition. Therefore, the organic wastes can be contained in the plants instead of seeing them float in the water. The plants must be pruned regularly and the dead parts must be eliminated from the aquarium ASAP.

Not only that, the aquarium plants will also provide a shelter to many micro organisms which are useful for the ecology and environment of the aquarium. In addition, plants have also the capacity to inhabit the growth of ugly algae since algae and plants compete for similar nutrients.

Most species of fish will never reproduce in an aquarium without plants. This is because some species need plants for them to feel secured enough to reproduce, while other species need the leaves of the plants to place their eggs in. An abundantly planted aquarium will also enhance the survival growth of the fry especially if you want to increase the number of fry in a similar aquarium like with the adult fish.

However, we all know that plants rely too much to light and photosynthesis. An aquarium with no plants will only need little. But if you are planning to have an abundant number of plants in your aquarium, you will be required to put new lights. A fluorescent light will be better to your planted aquarium, make sure that they are made especially for aquariums.

If you are a beginner, the plant species that will be suitable for you are the Java Moss and the Java Fern. These are strong plants that can survive in water hardiness and pH values. They can even be placed in a brackish aquarium like the Molly aquarium.

Aquarium plants are very important to the survival of most fishes in the aquarium. It does not matter what aquarium plant you choose, the important thing is you know how to maintain your aquarium as naturally as the fishes and plants habitat.

This content is provided by Low Jeremy. It may be used only in its entirety with all links included. For more information on aquariums, how to maintain, the basics of owning one, please visit

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Aqua Medic Aquarium Lighting

Aqua Medic Aquarium Lighting

By Daren L Bomaster

Many aquarium hobbyists and professionals use Aqua Media aquarium products in their tanks. Aqua Medic has been provding quality aquarium products for a few decades now. They also have a wonderful website where you can find out information about products you already own or are thinking about purchasing.

When it comes to aquarium lighting, Aqua Medic certainly understands the importance of lighting. It is very important that you have the right amount of light for either your planted freshwater aquarium, or your reef aquarium. It is also essential that the specific colors given off in the lights are going to be beneficial to the species of plants and/or reef that reside in your tank.

Aquarium lighting is one of the most confusing and often misunderstood aspects of a whole aquarium system. For this reason, companies light Aqua Medic have gone that extra step to help find the configurations that work ell together, as well as provide the customer with different options for further customizing their aquarium environment.

Whether you’re just building your first aquarium, or are working on a larger project, there are all kinds of lights and lighting kits to choose from. If you are just starting out or want to keep things simple, check out the compact lighting systems that are available online.

Compact aquarium lighting systems are great because they contain every single part that you need for an entire lighting set up. Whole aquarium lighting kits from Aqua Medic come with individual lamp(s), with lamp reflectors and clips, eight foot socket cords with quick connecting attachments and water resistant end caps, aqel ballasts that have an on-off switch as well as a power cord.

When you visit the Aqua Medic website, there are many helpful glossary pages and other information that help you to make informed decisions along the way. There are even handy guides about how to configure lighting or build your own custom aquarium.

Pretty much everything you’d ever need to build and maintain an aquarium (except the live reef, plants and fish!) can be found at Aqua Medic, including top of the line aquarium lighting supplies. These include quality bulbs of every type and size, halides and fluorescents, as well as ballasts, timers and mounting kits.

And when it comes to lighting separates, like lighting canopies, Aqua Medic’s selection simply can’t be beat! They’ve got pre-fabricated hoods and canopies for several different dimensions, as well as all kinds of retrofit systems and parts and pieces for building your own custom mounted lighting system.

There are a lot of parts and processes that go along with maintaining a large aquarium system. You can find our about each of the various processes and equipment used to carry out the work, at the Aqua Medic website. Everything from additives ad algae cleaners, to RO filters, food, UV sterilizers and protein skimmers are covered.

And if you’re still not sure exactly where to start, there are several recommended books on the topics of aquarium building and lighting for aquariums that are mentioned on the Aqua Medic website, along side the relevant products and information found there. With a little bit of research and experimentation, you’ll have a breathtaking underwater haven of your very own.

Daren has been lighting store for 10 years now and has become experienced with installing lighting in various areas. He has decided to create to answer many of the questions he has come across many times. Visit his website to learn more about decorative outdoor lighting.

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