Aquarium Advice

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How to raise pH in an African cichlid tank

Cichlids from East Africa’s Great Rift Valley are adapted to hard, alkaline water with a high pH in the wild, and should be given similar water conditions in the aquarium if they are to thrive. Tap water in the UK ranges from about pH 6-8.5 and depends on where you live, and where your local water authority sources its water from. A pH of 6 is lovely for most South American and West Af...

What is the best light for aquarium plants?

Aquarium plants need lighting with the right spectrum if they are to be healthy and grow properly. This may be slightly different to the stock lights supplied in your aquarium package so many planted tank owners and aquascapers swap their lights out for those with dedicated plant spectrums.The colour of light is measured in something called Kelvin, and most plant lights have a Kelvin rating ...

How to lower ammonia levels naturally

Ammonia is really dangerous to fish, even when as low as one part per million, and it's an invisible aquarium fish killer. Fish produce ammonia via their gills as they breathe but they aren’t adapted to be able to deal with it as in nature it's simply diluted by the vastness of the body of water they live in. In aquaria we use filters, or more specifically the live, beneficial bacteria...

Why is my fish tank green?

Fish tanks turn green with algae, which needs light, water and nutrients to grow. Algae spores are airborne, so even if you start off with brand new everything, coldwater, tropical or marine, your tank will go green.Algae are tiny plant-like dots that can stick to surfaces like the tank glass or even be free-floating in the water. A little algae is natural in any tank - some fish, snails and ...

How to do a water change without killing fish

Water changes are really important for fish tanks. They lower pollutant levels and can add buffers, freshening up the tank and aiding fish growth. They can also be used to remove debris from the tank, like algae and fish poop, so are a key part of a regular maintenance regime. We have freshwater in abundance in our homes - tap water - but there are a few key things you need to do to it f...

How to clean an aquarium filter pump

Most fishkeepers know about the importance of cleaning filter sponges, and to only ever do it in old aquarium water, not tapwater. They also know to replace white filter wool and polishing pads when dirty, and to replace carbon every 30 days. But the filter pump itself, the beating heart of the filtration system also needs maintenance too. A typical scenario goes like this: You switch th...

How many tropical fish can I put in a 40 litre tank?

Honey gourami

Fish stocking levels rely on several factors including the type of filter used, the amount of food that’s fed, the maturity of the biological filter, water temperature, tank surface area as well as the type of fish! Despite this, if the aquarium is more than six weeks old and has a mature filter, here are our recommendations.If the fish are an inch long like Neon tetras, White Cloud Mountai...

How to set up a quarantine tank

Quarantining newly purchased fish is so important as we can’t see if they are carrying parasites with the naked eye. Set up another tank to introduce fish to first and you’ll have a chance to properly acclimate them, get them feeding and rested, identify any health problems and treat disease if necessary. A quarantine tank can double-up as a hospital tank or even a breeding tank too. Here’s...

How to aquascape a freshwater aquarium

Aquascaping doesn’t have to be the sole domain of planted tank owners and literally just means landscaping underwater. Or even landscaping with water in the case of a garden pond. It’s more about design, and by using a few simple design principles you can make any aquarium look good, large or small, goldfish, cichlids or a community tank. HardscapeHardscape is the term given to r...

What other animals can I keep with fish in my aquarium?

There are several tempting non-fishy animal species aimed at the sale and keeping in fish tanks. But are they suitable to be mixed with fish? Visit your LFS and while looking for an interesting fish to buy you may well spot something else. Snails, crabs, shrimp, crayfish, frogs, even turtles, but unfortunately most are best kept separate from fish because they either eat fish, or they themselves ...

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