Aquarium Live Stock Shrimp illustration

Live Stock

Before purchasing any live stock, as in fish, shrimp or even snails, sufficient research must be read up about the species. You need to know the correct parameters to ensure the survival of the animal. Fish can be very easy to keep once you know which conditions they require. Pristine water conditions promote happy, healthy fish.

Requirements

Important factors to keeping healthy fish include correct temperature, PH and water hardness. With most species, the bigger the tank, the better. You need to research what sort of tank mates can be kept. A large tank containing many different species is called a community tank. Some species can’t be kept with certain other species, and some require their own tank (such as piranhas) as they will kill or bully anything else you add with them. This is known as a species only tank. YouTube videos and aquarium fish forums are a great way to research and see the fish’s behaviour before purchasing.

Feeding

Fish will readily accept many different varieties of fish food. The key to a healthy, happy fish is to feed multiple different fish foods from various brands. Different brands specialise in different nutrients so a variety ensures a healthy fish. A good staple fish flake, or fish pellet is required. Most fish will appreciate frozen food (special frozen food meant for fish), that you can buy in the form of a cube from a manufacturer. These can then be keep in your freezer. Research your fish species dietary requirements. Some fish require high vegetable content, whereas others require high protein.

Acclimating

When bringing your fish home ensure they are in a bag that will block out the light for the journey home. This limits stress. Once home, turn off your tank lights for the first day. Float the bag in the water for up to 20 minuets to acclimate them to the water temperature of their new home, before releasing. Be sure not to add any of the pet shop water from the bag, into your own tank. Prevent feeding until the next day, as scared or stressed fish wont eat, and uneaten food will only pollute the tank.

Breeding

Fish will breed once they reach maturity, and are comfortable in their surroundings. The key to getting your fish to breed is to get the conditions in the tank just right. Some fish are livebearers, which means they retain the eggs inside the body and give birth to live fish. While most other fish lay eggs. Some fish are great parents and will closely guard their abiding fry. While most other fish will swim around freely just as they did before. If there are larger fish in the tank then some fry will get eaten. To keep fry safe, some people often move them to their own tank once they’re born. A more practical option for most people, would be to keep them inside a breeding box that actually sits inside the main tank.