This article is not for medium and expert level aquarists. But may be beneficial for entry level hobbyists. There are some basics to start a new aquarium. And a lot of people are ignorant towards and get into trouble or find difficulty after they start off.
We will try to give an overview about basic necessities which are must as you start/
This is a basic requirement of fish keeping. Irrespective of what ever level of expertise you have, fish net is a must. Fish is very sensitive in nature. Handling without care will not only physically harm them, but also physiologically. A scared fish can move around very fast and can hit the equipments and wall of the tank and harm themselves. More over a stressed fish will have shorter live. Fish nets are available in different sizes and hence choose the right size of the net based on the size of the fish and the tank. Fish net will come handy while cleaning the tank or changing tanks or during transport.
Fish tank / Aquarium cleaning is a regular process and its a dirty business. How much ever money you spend on equipments or gadgets, you still get dirty. Siphon / or a gravel cleaner is a good device to pull the water and dust particle out of the tank during your cleaning process. These come in different types. Manual and Automatic. Oh.. No.. Not fully automatic. Only thing an Automatic Siphon can do is to use a battery operated pump to suck the water out of the tank. Rest all you need to do yourself. Manual Siphons are much cheaper and handy too.
Magnetic Glass Cleaner:
Glass tanks are bound to get dirty because of the dust or debris or even due to the algae growth. Magnetic Glass cleaners are available in the market in different sizes. You should choose the right magnet to fit you glass thickness. Glass cleaners recommended for 5mm glass should be used on a glass tank of 5mm only. Other wise it may not stick to the glass. At the same time, never buy a larger magnet for a thinner glass. There are fair chances of glass shattering and losing the whole tank.
These days Magnetic glass cleaners come with multiple accessories like scrubber, sponge and even Razor. They need to be used in the right way.
Filter media is as important as a filter and a tank. Its the filter media which helps in keeping the water clean, cool and helps in adding essential bacteria. The larger the surface area of the Filter media, better it is. Most common filter media is Carbon sticks, sponge, Aquaclay balls (comes in different sizes), Plastic media, Nitro balls, Sulphur media, Biolite, zeolite, Ceramic rings etc. There are expensive media which are specifically used for different purposes by experts.
Please do not that the media needs to be cleaned/ recharged and changed on periodic interval. Best way to clean is to clean with fresh water. Never use any kind of detergent or chemicals. Once washed we recommend the media, specially Carbon to be dried in sun. And our recommendation is to change the media every 1.5 years.
Please note that all media is not compatible with all types of filters and tank. For eg. Carbon should be never used in a Planted aquarium. For more details please consult our expert on whatsapp chat +91 9884434452
Maintaining the temperature of the aquarium is really important. Fish unlike human body does not generate heat adjust the temperature and adapt to the environment. It adjusts based on the temperature of the water in the tank. The ideal temperature for normal Aquarium fish is 26 – 28Degree Celsius. Anything below or above that is not good. You may need a keep a watch on this and install a heater or a chiller based on your location. India has diverse climate and hence it would be important to note that some places may need both heater and chiller both. We have spoken about heaters in a different blog already and hence recommend you read that here. Read about chiller / Fan below
Fans are the most common chillers used in India. Primarily because buying a chiller with compressor is too expensive affair. Fans again come in different sizes and power rating. You need a fan to cool the water temperature. Fans for aquarium comes with pedestal which can be mounted on the Glass rim and can be operated manually or use a Digital timer.
Most of the hobbyists in India use tap water for their fish tanks and as such tap water may not be necessarily potable. And obviously for that reason can not be used directly in the fish tank. The salt and mineral content of the tap water may change based on the source. Best would be to buy some water conditioner and treat the water before using in the tank. Even if you are setting up the tank for first time or refilling water after cleaning or topping up, our recommendation is to use water conditioner always. Most of the water conditioners available can remove impurities in just 30 minutes. So 30 minutes prior to adding water in the tank, treat the water.
Water cycle is in itself a science. Unless you have cycled water in your tank, the fish might not live long. Thats the reason why we always recommend our fellow enthusiasts to introduce fish only after 2 weeks of tank set up. This will help the water to be liveable for aquatic animals. To increase the water cycle process faster, we always recommend Essential Bacteria to be added in the fish tank. The essential bacteria comes in Powder and liquid forms, you can buy based on your choice. If you are using powder, then you need to follow the instructions on the pack how to mix in right amount of water before adding to the tank. We also recommend that essential bacteria is used on period interval even after the tank is set up.
The Idea of decoration came from the effective use of Air pumps. Air pumps are usually connected to some toys and which performs some activity when Air is released into water. But now there are a lot of decorative items available in the market like Driftwood, Rocks, and Artificial Plants etc. Some of these are useful in a tank and some are only for decorative purpose and does not add any value.
On /off timers are important gadget for a tank. This can control Lights, Wavemakers and CO2 Kit. Timers are available in manual and automatic types and based on need an budget one can be used effectively.