When it comes to choosing the right aquarium fish, there are a few simple things you should watch for to ensure the success of your tank. Not all fish like the same conditions and water temperatures, so the type of environment you plan to create will determine the type of fish you choose.
Then there are fish that love to live in schools of the same types of fish. Buying just one of these fish means it will become lonely and stressed and may end up becoming ill. Choosing the right sized fish for your tank is also something to think about, as sometimes you may buy one that is quite small, but it may grow quite large over time which can overcrowd your tank and increase your risk of tank diseases.
When youve figured out what types of fish youd prefer to see in your aquarium, ask some questions at your local aquarium store. Always remember to tell them about the types of fish you already have in your tank and how many you have so you wont be tempted to buy too many or buy incompatible fish.
Tank Temperature: Your tanks environment is the most important factor in selecting the type of fish you buy. Tropical fish will struggle in a cold water environment, while cold water fish wont do well in a warm water tank. This means the two types of fish arent going to mix well in the same tank, so be sure to choose only fish varieties that should thrive in the environment youve created.
Water Conditions: Some fish can be quite territorial and dont like to be overcrowded as there is less available water space. More fish in a small space also means higher ammonia levels, which will mean youll be changing your water more regularly to keep it clean.
Fish Size: Buying small fish doesnt mean theyre not going to mature into big fish in a few months time. Several large fish in a smaller tank or a tank already populated with lots of other fish can cause overcrowding. This can lead to even more problems.
Fish Types: Not all fish live well together. Some prefer to be isolated and others can be very aggressive. Territorial fish varieties may attack gentler fish, which can lead to injuries that could become infected or it can lead to dead fish. If you want to keep aggressive fish, keep them in a separate tank away from your more social, gentler varieties.
Food Types: Most people are familiar with fish flakes and the sight of fish coming to the surface to eat the bits you sprinkle over the top is common. However not all fish will eat this type of fish food. Some prefer a little more substance in their diets, so consider things like brine shrimp or mealworms. You should check what your particular fish prefer to eat.
Looks Are Everything: When youre choosing a fish to buy, dont just check out the individual fish. Look at all the other fish in the tank as well. If there are any in the aquarium that look ill or have strange growths or discolorations on their scales then dont buy any fish from that tank.
Even if the fish youre considering looks great and appears healthy, the incidence of disease and illness within the tank means that the one you buy could potentially introduce the same illness into your own home aquarium.
Creating a successful aquarium does take a little planning and foresight. If you remember to choose compatible fish with each other and with their environment and feed them with the types of food they prefer, then you should find you have happy, healthy aquarium fish.