Basic advice on keeping fish

Basic Advice For Keeping Fish

Fish make great pets because they tend to suit most people’s lifestyle: they don’t require any exercise, they don’t make any noise and they don’t take up much space in the house. However, even though keeping fish may seem like an easy task, there are still some basic things that you should know before you invest.

Marine (sea) fish, warm tropical water fish or cold water fish?

Choosing which fish you want as pets is requires more thought than simply looking at the pretty colours and different shapes and sizes.

When discussing your fish, think about whether you want cold water fish, tropical or marine. They all require different types of living environments, and it is important that you are aware of these before you make a purchase.

You should speak to the staff wherever you are shopping and discuss which fish may best suit you.

Ensure you’re fully aware of the start up costs, purchase price of fish/reef/coral and the ongoing routine costs.

Be prepared to spend some money

Basic fish keeping doesn’t have to be an expensive task, but it is important that you don’t skip out on quality in order to save money.

You should invest in a good quality tank, pump and food for your fish in order that they are kept happy and healthy.

Choose functionality over novelty

Just as many people want to choose their fish based on their beautiful and quirky appearances, it is often the same when it comes to choosing a tank. However, it is important that you consider what you need from your tank before you become persuaded by fancy shapes and designs.

In general, most non-standard tank shapes (that is non-rectangular) don’t tend to provide enough swimming length for fish.

Make your fish feel at home

You may be tempted by the multi-coloured sands and stones for your fish tanks, as well as the novelty decorations and ornaments, but these could actually make your fish feel uncomfortable.

Fish are used to wild environments, which means that muted greys, greens and browns and plant decorations will make them feel more at home than bright pink gravel and oddly shaped ornaments.

Don’t overfeed

It is often the case that instructions on food packets instruct owners to feed their fish three times a day.

In reality, this is too much, and adding a large pinch of food to the tank once or twice a day (depending on the size and number of your fish) will be plenty to keep them satisfied.

Overfeeding can lead to your fish becoming unwell, and excess food left in the tank can make it more dirty than necessary.

Make time for maintenance

Despite the fact that fish are low maintenance in comparison to other pets, they do still require some regular looking after.

You will need to carry out different levels of maintenance at different intervals. You should try to give the front glass of the tank a daily clean (you can invest in magnetic tank cleaner that makes this easy), but you will need to do more thorough maintenance such as topping up any water lost through evaporation, and be prepared to carry out more intense cleaning on a monthly to two-monthly basis.

Not only does this keep your tank looking presentable, it also means that your fish are in a healthy environment.

As you would before buying any type of pet, it is important that you are very well-informed before getting your fish.

Staff in aquariums and pet shops that sell fish should be able to give you advice and answer any questions, even if you aren’t planning on making a purchase that day.