4 Basic Needs To Keep Your Coral Reef Tank Flourishing

While there is quite an extensive range of different types of corals out there, they all have four basic needs to survive and thrive. Whether you are a novice reef keeper or you are searching for expert tips to keep more complicated types of coral’s flourishing, in most cases, caring for the basic needs is all these intriguing sea things really need. However, even though it may seem quite simple to keep your reef tank alive and thriving, many novice reef keepers have some difficulties as achieving the perfect conditions can be quite a challenge. For this reason, it is often best to take on the responsibility of freshwater fish, such as goldfish, as this effort will help you better understand the dynamics of creating suitable conditions for fish.

Listed below are the four basic needs of different corals. As corals can be undeniably picky, it is always best to avoid welcoming other life into the tank before you have managed to perfect the water conditions for roughly one month.


Most tanks require an installed light as it assists with regulating water temperature. The intensity and amount of light needed can vary quite a bit according to the type of coral you are hoping to keep. Aspects that affect light requirements include the type of coral and at what depth the coral is found in the ocean. The deeper the coral, the more light is naturally filtered out before reaching the coral. On the other hand, corals that are found closer to water surfaces in the ocean require more light. However, as a rule of thumb, hard SPS and LPS corals require a lot more light in comparison to soft corals.

It is always best to opt for quality equipment when keeping corals as quality items won’t need to be replaced often, which can disrupt coral reefs. It would be best to look for the best LED lighting fixtures for growing flourishing aquarium corals.

coral reef tank

Water Movement

The next basic need for corals is water movement. Some types of corals require a water surge to remove debris from surfaces. Reef keepers all hold the common goal of attempting to achieve the same specific gravity of seawater within tanks as this will ensure coral can thrive. You can make use of powerheads to create circulation withing your saltwater tank. The better the water circulation is within your tank, the better the quality of water will be for your coral.

Water Quality

Reef tanks should contain water that is of suitable quality to sustain life. Trace minerals and elements should be present within the right concentrations as chemical reactions need to take place. Some chemical reactions are essential for corals to process food, grow, and reproduce. When it comes to ammonia, there should be trace amounts present, although, for best results, it should be near zero. Nitrate, calcium, iodine, strontium, magnesium, phosphate, and nitrite include other trace minerals your water should contain. You can test water quality with the help of disposable tests often sold in pet shops. Water quality is among the most important primary need as achieving the right condition can be quite a challenge.


Coral food is quite different from the food you would feed your goldfish. Coral food can come in an assortment of forms as their environment provides their nutritional needs. The water contents act as a coral soup, giving the coral all it needs to thrive. The trace minerals and elements, as well as planktons that develop in water content, are all vital for the survival of the coral reef. Therefore, you should focus on creating perfect water quality to ensure your coral can process food and growth.

Starting Small

If you are a novice reef keeper, it is crucial to research as much as possible before selecting your reef tank. It is also important to avoid keeping too many different types of corals in one tank as not all can co-exist. It is always best to start small and maintain the goal of recreating a natural environment for your coral; therefore, you should consider which corals co-exist in the ocean before bringing different types of corals home. Keeping corals can be extremely exciting as the saltwater organisms are among the most enchanting options for fish lovers. Starting small will allow you to pick a coral that is somewhat less complicated, and as time goes on, you will be able to add to your tank with confidence.

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