Fish are sensitive animals that are very receptive to any change in their environment. Fish make very manageable and adorable pets, but you’ve got to know how to care for them. Even if you’ve got a super busy routine, keeping your fish happy and healthy won’t be too difficult a task.
There are so many different kinds of fresh water fish available, and your job as an owner is to provide them with an environment with all the essential elements from their natural habitat. Aquarium for fresh water fish are inexpensive too, and lots of new fish owners can get over this first hurdle with ease. However, they may struggle with the maintenance of the tank and hence the fish.
Here are 4 essential tips you should follow to ensure your fish stays healthy and happy.
1. Cycle the Tank
Cycling the tank basically means to make water conditions in the aquarium suitable for the fish. You should never get both, new fish and a new aquarium on the same day because experts suggest that the new tank should run for a week before you add fish in.
Cycling involves the growth of healthy micro-organisms in the tank that feed on the fish waste. Aquariums usually come with little kits of necessary elements you can use for cycling. You can also kick start the cycling process by adding fish food that will break down and catalyze the microbe growth.
2. Maintenance of pH
Water is to fish like air is to us. Toxic air with high levels of ammonia and carbon monoxide kills us. Similarly, neglected and unkept aquariums can become too acidic or alkaline for your fish, which makes it important for you to maintain an ideal pH. For fresh water fish, it should be between 6.6 and 7.8.
Check the tank’s pH on a regular basis to maintain ideal conditions for the fish. Keeping the pH within this range will produce a natural antiseptic effect by not letting pathogenic microbes grow, and keeping the fish protected from illness.
3. Managing Light
New aquarium owners often struggle with managing the amount of algae marking up the water. Algae blooms occur due to excess sunlight, so make sure you place your tank away from anywhere that receives strong sunlight.
The moderate day light is all your fish needs, so try to not let the tank light switched on for more than 12 hours every day. It’s a good idea to have live plants in the aquarium as well because they compete for essential nutrients in the tank with algae and therefore, they keep algae levels in check.
4. Replacing Water
You should replace one third of the water in the aquarium every month. With time, the amount of nitrates builds up in the aquarium and that’s not good for the fish. These nitrates also influence the pH of the water.
Replacing the water is better than adding more chemical mediators. However, if you’re adding tap water, you need to balance out its content to make it supportable for the aquatic life. Use de-chlorinating and biological aquarium supplements to condition the water properly.
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