How to Take Care of Your Fish

Thứ bảy - 27/04/2024 01:11
Fish make beautiful and entertaining pets. Whether you are a beginner or an expert, there are a few basics of fish ownership that are important to follow. Ensure that they are comfortable and healthy by getting the right size tank and...
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Fish make beautiful and entertaining pets. Whether you are a beginner or an expert, there are a few basics of fish ownership that are important to follow. Ensure that they are comfortable and healthy by getting the right size tank and adding appropriate plants and decorations.[1] Fish can live a long time, so establishing a cleaning and feeding routine will make ownership more fun and less stressful.

Part 1
Part 1 of 4:

Learn About the Nitrogen Cycle

The nitrogen cycle is how your aquarium stays clean. Without a properly cycled tank, your fish will be stressed and likely to pass away early.

  1. Step 1 In the first step to the cycle, your fish poops.
    The waste contains a toxic chemical called ammonia. Ammonia is also produced by leftover food in the tank, so be sure you're not overfeeding your fish.
    • When you test your ammonia in the tank, an ideal level is below 0.25ppm.
  2. Step 2 Beneficial bacteria (called nitrosomonas bacteria) digests the ammonia and turns it into nitrites.
    This bacteria is found in your fish filter. Before you get your fish, run your filter for awhile in the tank and add in fish food to feed the bacteria. When a brown film appears in the filter media, do not wash the filter. This brown film is the nitrosomonas bacteria. Without it, your fish will suffer ammonia poisoning.
  3. Step 3 Nitrites are toxic to your fish.
    When you test them, the ideal level is 0.0ppm.
  4. Step 4 Beneficial bacteria (nitrobacter bacteria) digests the nitrites and turns it into nitrates.
    As well as the nitrosomonas bacteria, this bacteria is also visible in a brown film in the filter.
  5. Step 5 Nitrates should be kept below 20ppm.
    Plants assist in removing nitrates, but you should do at least a one fourth water change every week to keep the nitrates down.
  6. Step 6 The cycle starts again when you put fish food in the tank.
    You should only get your fish when your tank is fully cycled.[2] This means the ammonia and nitrites are 0ppm and the nitrates are below 20ppm. When you add your fish, only add up to three at a time or your ammonia will rise.
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Part 2
Part 2 of 4:

Choosing Your Fish

  1. Step 1 Decide on freshwater or saltwater.
    Freshwater fish are the best choice for beginners, as they require less aquarium maintenance. They also generally have fewer health issues in home aquariums. Saltwater fish require saltwater aquariums and are more challenging to maintain. However, they are quite beautiful.[3]
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Part 3
Part 3 of 4:

Setting Up Your Tank

  1. Step 1 Get the right size tank.
    The bigger that your fish will get, or the more of them that you have, the larger your tank will need to be. As a general rule, a freshwater fish that grows to be one inch length should have 4.5 liters (1.2 US gal) of water in the tank. A saltwater fish measuring the same size should have 2.5 liters (0.7 US gal) of water. Multiply these figures by the total number of fish that you have to decide which tank to purchase. However, this rule doesn't always apply. Some energetic species, such as shrimp, require more room to thrive. You also need to consider the bio load of the fish (how much ammonia they produce). Higher bio loads need bigger tanks. For example, plecos, goldfish, and platies have high bio loads, while tetras and otocinclus have lower bio loads.
    • When in doubt it’s better to get a slightly larger tank, as overcrowding can cause a number of health problems for fish. It can even lead to fish deaths due to poor water quality.
    • Make sure to base your calculations on your fish’s full adult size, not their current size.
  2. Step 4 Install the filtration system.
    A filter will keep your water clean and remove many pollutants, such as fecal matter.[8] There are mechanical filters that catch debris in traps that can be emptied. There are chemical filters that absorb pollutants with activated carbon. And, there are biological filters that use active bacteria to balance the chemicals in the water.[9]
    • A mechanical filter is generally the best option for a beginner, as they are fairly basic.
    • Some filters should be placed under the gravel in your tank, whereas others hang from the back of your tank.[10] There are also canister filters, which go inside the tank.
    • Only clean the first filter media, near the back of the filter. It only needs cleaning if it's full of debris. Otherwise DO NOT clean the filter! This will cause ammonia and nitrite spikes and could kill your fish. The filter media will grow beneficial brown bacteria on it, which removes toxic chemicals from the fish waste. It is essential to keeping your fish alive.
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Part 4
Part 4 of 4:

Maintaining Your Tank and Fish

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  • Avoid cleaning your tank with heavy chemicals, as these can leave residue that will harm your fish.[31]
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Things You'll Need

  • Fish
  • Tank
  • Fish food
  • Substrate (sand or gravel)
  • Filter
  • Heater
  • Light
  • Water conditioner
  • Water testing kit
  • Salt
  • Water thermometer
  • Buckets
  • Gravel siphon
  • Tap water dechlorinator

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