Aquarium do nots
I’ve noticed a kind of pattern of mistakes that people make when they’re first starting up aquariums and I wanted to give you my top 10 aquarium do nots starting at…..
Do not use detergents and/or soap or anything with oils in it to clean the inside of the aquarium. A lot of people will do that when they’re setting up their first tank before they get the water and put the fish in and all that. You want to get it nice and clean. Get all the dust out. Just do it with tap water. Anything else will stick around inside the aquarium and then when you fill it full of water, get the fish in there they end up getting all that stuff in their gills. The oils will mess with them and a lot of the time they don’t survive so just avoid it all together.
Do not put your tank near a window. I know a lot of people want to stick in your window. they think oh natural sunlight. It’ll be great. It will be great for algae. Lots of algae that will never go away. You’ll never get the best of it because that natural sunlight will supercharge that algae and it’ll grow everywhere and your tank will always be a mess and you won’t like that. Trust me
Do not use tap water for your tank without using a water conditioner. Why you might ask. Because chlorine is caustic and it will harm your fish and your tap water is going to have chlorine. Unless of course you’re on a well in which case you still want to use a water conditioner. Because a lot of them will help neutralize heavy metals and other contaminants in the water that you’re still going to have in well water. So just be safe use water conditioner and make it comfy for your fish.
Do not add all the fish at once. Don’t do it. Lots of people do it and it’s a massive mistake. Why is it a big mistake? Well if you add all the fish at the same time you’re gonna have an ammonia spike and that’s created basically because your filter isn’t able to handle all of the waste of those new fish at the same time. It takes a little while for the beneficial bacteria in the filter to build up to a level that can sustain those fish. So if you do it a few fish at a time the waste will never get high enough in the aquarium that it’ll be harmful for them.
Do not ignore the adult size of the fish you are buying for your aquarium. When you go to your local fish store is really important to pay attention to how large these little fish are going to get. Because a lot of these smaller fish are actually babies that have the potential to reach a decent size. Some might start off at an inch and end up being two feet. If you have a big tank it’s not a big problem. You just get you know baby fish. They’ll grow big. No big deal. Or you get full size fish and they stay that size. Great.
You have a small tank. Bigger problem because contrary to popular belief it will not grow to the size of the aquarium. It’s going to keep growing and if it does keep growing and it doesn’t have the space sometimes it gets stunted and then they end up not surviving. It’s not good for them their internal organs have nowhere to go but they want to keep growing. What are you gonna do? Buy appropriately sized fish.
Do not leave your aquarium light on 24/7. Why? Good question. One, algae. Same reason you don’t want to leave it by a window.If you just light the thing all the time you’re going to end up with algae all over the place and you won’t be able to stop it and it’ll be a mess. Algae isn’t necessarily bad for the fish but it’s really unsightly.And second reason a lot of your, fish especially diurnal fish. They use lighting as a cue for when they should be awake and should be resting. If you have no rest period for them they eventually get stressed out.
This can lead to a weakened immune system and it could get sick. So let them rest. Just you know put it on a timer if you think you’re going to forget or just turn it on and off on when you wake up in the morning and off before you go to bed.
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Do not put your hands inside your aquarium unless you have rinsed them first. This is super super super important. I can’t stress this enough. People have messed their fish up doing this and lost their aquariums. The reason this is important is because any type of hand cream or perfume or oil anything on your hands going into your tank can and will affect your fish. So making sure that you rinse them under tap water first and that you don’t have anything on them before you do maintenance on your tank will save your fish literally. Hero, hero that’s what you are every time you wash your hands you’re a hero to your fish.
Do not ignore maintenance. Water changes are vital for success. They basically make the difference between a toxic environment and a healthy environment for your fish. Especially for those of us who are a little heavy-handed when feeding. Which is pretty much everybody because who doesn’t like watching their fish eat? You got to do water changes. You don’t have to do a ton of them. Just enough to keep the environment clean. For most people you really shouldn’t change more than 50% of the water because it can cause an imbalance in the bacteria and basically throw the chemistry out of whack. So yeah, just avoid it.
Vitally important and and one of the most common mistakes people make to be honest. Do not clean your filter and do a water change on the same day. You want to have at least three days apart and I’ll explain why. When you remove water from the aquarium you disrupt the water chemistry slightly and you remove some beneficial bacteria. When you clean your filter you remove a lot more beneficial bacteria and if you remove too much at once what ends up happening is you cause a cycle within your aquarium. If there isn’t enough beneficial bacteria for the amount of fish in the aquarium you wind up with an ammonia spike which can be very very dangerous for the fish.
A lot of the time you lose fish and I’ll throw this in here. Also do not rinse your biological media from your filter in tap water. Tap water has chlorine or chloramines and those things kill bacteria so you’re going to kill the bacteria that you’ve worked so hard to achieve in your filter that keeps your fish alive by destroying ammonia. Well just use a little bit of tank water, maybe a cups worth. Rinse off the bio media and put it back in your filter. Problem solved. Now you haven’t killed anything. Okay so we’re down to our….
Now this is arguably the most important part about being a responsible aquarium or pet owner in general. Do not under any circumstances ever dump water from your aquarium or the fish or the plants or any other livestock into your local lakes rivers streams ponds creeks, anywhere. Don’t dump them because it can have disastrous effects on the environment. Let me explain. If you dump your pets in the local bodies of water it can have disastrous environmental effects.
For instance you could be introducing a new strain of bacteria or fungus or some other type of disease to your local wildlife that might wipe out a species. You don’t want to do that. Also you could be introducing a species to your local area that’s never been there before and that could out compete your native wildlife for things like food and shelter and could just mess everything up and you can destroy an ecosystem and then you’ve got to live with that for the rest of your life and nobody nobody can do that. That’s crippling on the inside I would think. I’ve never done it.
Well we put this top-ten aquarium do nots list together based on the most common aquarium questions that we get from New Aquarists so we really hope it helps you out. But we know there’s a billion more questions out there so if you have any feel free to ask them in the comment section below and for all of our seasoned aquarists out there if you feel like putting in your two cents and your tips feel free to drop those down below as well. Because we’d love to have them and don’t forget to subscribe to our website. We’ve got new videos coming out for you every week and we already have a bunch here to help answer any questions you might have and as always it is important that you keep on tanking as responsible and effective aquarium hobbyists.
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