If you’re thinking about starting an aquarium, congratulations! Fish keeping can be a fun and rewarding hobby. But where do you start? With so many different types of aquariums on the market, from predator tanks to community tank systems, it’s important to first determine which tank type is right for you. Here’s a quick guide to help you choose the best aquarium for beginners.
Initial Questions To Ask Yourself
Before you go out and purchase a tank, you’ll need to ask yourself (or the new fishkeeper) a few essential questions.
- How much time are you willing to give to your aquarium and its inhabitants?
- Are you comfortable balancing a range of maintenance and feeding routines?
- Are you seeking a challenge or do you prefer something easy to care for?
Knowing your answers to these questions will help you define which type of tank is suited for your needs and wants.
There are several types of tanks, each with varying levels of maintenance and care needs.
Aptly named for tanks that hold predator fish, or fish that prey on other fish, a predator tank is a fish-only tank. It’s easy to maintain because you’ll only have to care for fish, rather than also caring for corals and other sea animals. However, because predator fish eat other fish, more waste and excess nutrients get into the water. Because of this, a predator tank requires larger filtration systems and larger water changes. Dim lighting is preferred for these tanks, which can be beneficial to help stave off algae growth.
Community Tank Systems
Community tanks hold a range of species that coexist together. This can be just fish or a mix of fish, corals, invertebrates and other organisms. Due to the range of tank species, there can be more chemical characteristics to monitor and balance, including knowing which species live well together as well as their different feeding routines and food needs. Corals need strong lighting, but too much lighting can promote unwanted algae growth so these tanks need constant cleaning.
Fish-only tanks walk the line between predator tanks and community tanks. In a fish-only tank, you can have multiple fish species that coexist well together (not predators), but you will not have corals, invertebrates or organisms other than fish. This is often the easiest tank type to care for, though keep in mind that feeding schedules may still need to be varied and the tank will still need to be cleaned regularly.
Choosing A Tank
Once you know the kind of tank you want and the amount of time, care and maintenance you’re willing to give your new hobby, it’s time to select a tank. At Aquatic Reef Design, we carry a range of tank sizes from Cade Aquariums. It’s a brand we stand behind, because you and your fish deserve the best. From excellent filtration systems for every tank type to superior, leak-free bonds, super high clarity glass, and premium manufacturing, you’ll love Cade, too.
Need help determining the best tank size? Use this helpful guide to determine the best size aquarium for your home.
At Aquatic Reef Design, we’re excited to help you get into fishkeeping, from purchasing a tank to setting it up and keeping your fish and other organisms healthy. If you have questions, we have the answers. Call us today with any questions you have. And once you get started, we’re always here for advice and any other fishkeeping needs!