Over the years I have heard some pretty interesting beliefs on aquariums. I use the term “interesting” with a puzzled look on my face. I am the first to admit that there are many different ways to start and care for an aquarium. However there are even more ways to ruin it. Between the internet, untrained big box store personnel and the neighbor who had a tank as a kid, things can become miserable pretty quick. So here are a few ideas to help you swim through the waters of fish keeping.
First and foremost! Common sense. Seriously. If you are being told to do something that makes you think, “That doesn’t sound quite right,” it probably isn’t. I’m surprised how many people I talk to knew they were screwing up as they were doing it, “but the guy in the fish department said to.” Trust yourself and follow the next practice.
We have Google. It’s amazing. Use it! (I know, sounds like I’m contradicting myself, keep reading) Now we get to refer back to first rule, common sense. Go to reputable websites. Try to steer away from forums until you have a solid understanding of the hobby. Also, double check what you learn. Triple check even. Better safe than sorry. And please, for the love of fish, use your phone and Google BEFORE purchasing new fish for your aquarium! This one common mistake really makes my blood pressure soar.
Read books, read magazines. There’s an awful lot to be said for a $4.99 magazine crammed with great up to date information on this hobby.
This hobby is growing so quickly and we have advanced in so many ways. Lighting, bacterial additives, captive breeding, benefits of probiotics in fish food, etc. These advances and others have made it so very easy to keep amazing aquariums. You really should give it a try!
Leaving you with a fun fish fact: Did you know a pregnant goldfish is called a twit? Who woulda guessed that one?
Shawn Chase is the owner of Mountains to Sea Aquariums at Suite 103, 1446 Brevard Road, Asheville. She is also has a tankful of fishy expertise and is a frequent PetGazette contributor. Find her store on Facebook or call 828 633-6624.