After the lockdowns of 2020, when we’ve all been more confined to home, many people have realized that pet ownership has all sorts of benefits – from providing exercise to relieving stress. While dogs and cats make great companions, fish also have many advantages.
First, they’re low-maintenance, and you’ll be able to leave them alone without feeling guilty. They don’t need exercise, and they won’t scratch the furniture or disturb the neighbors. Once you have your aquarium set up, they’re inexpensive and you won’t have to budget for huge vet bills.
So if you’re thinking of buying an aquarium and filling it with beautiful fish, what are some of the things you’ll need to think about? Here are 3 basic considerations to help you make the right choice.
1. Start with your tank size.
First of all, choose a tank that fits well into your room. It needs to be located in a position where it can be enjoyed without causing an obstruction.
For your aquarium to look its best, you’ll want to stock it with the right number of fish. You’ll need enough to create interest, but they’ll also need plenty of room to swim around freely. An overcrowded tank won’t look attractive.
But how can you calculate how many you’ll need?
One commonly used guide is to stock one 3-inch slim fish per 3 gallons of water. So, for a 50-gallon tank, you’d only want around 16-17 fishes of that size. However, if you go for larger, or round varieties, reduce the number accordingly.
2. Choose the fish you want
When it comes to stocking your aquarium, it pays to consider the needs of each species. While some fish can thrive alone or in pairs, other species such as corys fare better in shoals, while cichlids are often best kept in single-species environments.
Keep in mind that if you’re going for a particular breed, it’s best to do your research first and buy from a specialist dealer. For example, if you’re interested in raising koi carp, browse Complete Koi’s variety of koi carp for sale, to get more information about what they’ll require and which ones may be suitable for a tank of your size – they usually grow to at least 12-15 inches. And keep in mind that if you purchase juveniles, there’s the chance that they will eventually outgrow their space.
3. Find a reputable store.
As a beginner, this is perhaps the most important step. A reputable dealer, with a passion for fish-keeping, will be able to offer the best advice. If you have your heart set on keeping an unusual species such as dragonfish, he or she will be able to advise on their nutrition and other specific requirements for their care.
When purchasing equipment, choose the best quality available within your budget, rather than opting for a ‘starter kit’ which may contain lower quality items or things you just don’t need.
A specialist dealer can offer invaluable advice on every aspect of your new hobby to ensure you get the most from it, so never be afraid to ask for help.