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Tips For Choosing A Fish Tank

Aug 17, 2007
Picking the right tropical fish tank will make the care of your tank easier and much more fun for both you and the fish, so you will want to choose an aquarium that not only looks sharp, but is also functional and appropriate for your needs. Ultimately the decision is yours to make - below are a few thoughts that should help to insure you pick an aquarium that is perfect for you!

Shape

The most prevalent shapes for fish tanks are hexagon and rectangular, but you can also buy rounded bubble tanks, coffee table tanks and even thin fish tanks that fit right in your wall! When deciding on the size of your tank, you need to consider the location where you will setup the tropical fish tank to be certain the tank will fit and won't stick out into any traffic areas.

Rectangular fish tanks are best for your water quality and fish health. Because rectangular tanks are long, the surface area (the area that meets the air) is bigger in ratio than aquarium tanks of other shapes and sizes and allows for best exchange of gases and, hence a healthier aquarium tank. A hexagon shaped fish tank, looks neat, but there is not as much surface area. You can still have a successful hexagon shaped tank, but you will most likely need to spend more time maintaining the water and won't be able to house as many tropical fish as you can when using a rectangular tank which holds as much water.

Location

If just are going to have 1 fish as a conversation piece on a small shelf or bathroom vanity a cool decorative tropical aquarium could be just the thing. When picking a location for the fish tank be sure that you take the weight of the tank into consideration (a filled aquarium can weigh 12 pounds per gallon so a filled 20 gallon Aquarium Setup can weigh over 200 pounds) and locate it a spot that can support the weight including the right stand. When buying your aquarium tank, it is necessary to think about its placement in your house. If you are looking to add appeal to an empty corner, a hexagon shaped aquarium tank might be wonderful, but a long rectangular aquarium setup could make an interesting statement along a wall.

Size

If you are just a beginner you should consider a 20 to 30 gallon aquarium setup. A small 5 gallon aquarium tank is fine if you do not have a lot of space but you will have to be sure you don't overload the aquarium with fish or the quality of your water will suffer which can make your fish unhealthy. Don't be tempted by those little fish tanks or bowls that have 1 or 2 fish with no filtration, Believe me, the fish will not live for a long time in that tank and you will spend a lot of time monitoring the water quality and performing water changes. The rule of thumb for size when buying an aquarium is that the bigger the aquarium tank, the less maintenance you'll need to carry out and the more fish you can house.

Typically you can house 1 inch of fish for every gallon of water in the tank - along with adequate aeration and filtration, that is. If you buy a 20 gallon aquarium setup, you can have 20 inches of tropical fish, or about 15 fish with the tinier 5 gallon aquariums you will only be able to keep 2 or 3 fish.

Picking the right tank is a question of personal preference, you need to weigh the options and pick what fits your needs. Doing your homework before you go to the store will help to save you both time and money in the long run.
About the Author
Lee Dobbins writes for Page Giant where you can find more interesting articles on a variety of subjects.
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