What are some tips for setting up a saltwater aquarium?


Quick Answer

When setting up a saltwater aquarium, spend time researching which fish you want living in it and the right kind of tank for those fish. Some considerations are whether or not to have a reef system, and whether you want one large predator or numerous fish of varying sizes. Since saltwater aquariums are considered by many hobbyists to be expensive, planning can prevent a significant waste of money.

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Full Answer

In order to choose the correct tank, decide what size and number of sea life you want. Make sure all the fish you choose are compatible to live together safely before you buy them. The number and type of fish you choose determine the type and size of tank to purchase. The size of the tank determines its requirements for filtration, heating, water chemistry and lighting. Also, before setting up the aquarium, determine what supplies to stock in order to maintain the tank and feed the fish.

Another important factor in choosing a tank is its shape. In general, shorter, wider dimensions are better for the fish. One reason for this is a wider tank has more surface area, which provides better oxygenation of the water and faster release of carbon dioxide. Also, fish swim mostly in horizontal patterns, so wider tanks give them greater space to move.

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