Random Aquarium Topics

Undergravel Filters

Marine Topics - Filtration

Undergravel Filter Q) How do I go about setting up a basic undergravel filter for a marine aquarium?

 A) Over the last ten years or so, marine filtration has advanced in leaps and bounds, leading many to believe that there is no future for the technique that sustained marine livestock for several generations.......the undergravel filter. Such beliefs are, of course, highly misleading, for undergravel filters work very well and are an excellent starting point for newcomers to the hobby; especially those whose budget will not stretch to all the high-tech gadgetry now available. Having said that, we cannot ignore the basics of good marine aquarium husbandry and any beginner is urged to start with a reasonably sized aquarium; 36"x12"x15" (90x30x35cm) must be seen as an absolute minimum, although 36"x15"x18" (90x35x45cm) would be a much better starting point. The larger the tank, the greater the degree of water stability and the happier the livestock (and you) will ultimately be. 

Cyphotilapia frontosa

Freshwater Fish - Cichlids

Cyphotilapia frontosa A pair of Cyphotilapia frontosa from the authors aquarium.

One of the most beautiful and distinctive Cichlids of Lake Tanganyika has to be C. frontosa. There are two colour morphs of this species, a Berundi morph, which has six vertical bars and a Tanzanian morph, which has seven or even eight bars when they are young, although in my experience I have only ever encountered the Berundi morph. The males develop a huge lump of fat on the top of its head making this a very distinctive occupant to any aquarium.

Starting With Invertebrates

Marine Invertebrates - Invertebrate Systems

Soft CoralThere's no doubt about it, a well arranged coral invertebrate aquarium can be one of the most impressive and satisfying sights you are likely to witness within the fishkeeping hobby. People seem to be drawn like a magnet to its exotic beauty and a certain disbelief that something so defying adequate description could possibly be real! The romanticism and awe-inspiring beauty associated with coral reefs has been witnessed to some degree by nearly everyone, courtesy of the television or cinema. The urge to acquire a piece of coral reef 'real estate' for the lounge can be very strong indeed, leading to uncontrollable weekend spending sprees, high hopes and good intentions. Not, however, the best recipe for a successful marine aquarium I am sorry to say!

How to Combat Hydra Infestation

Freshwater Topics - Diseases and Pests

HydraHydras belong to Phylum Coelenterata, a group of aquatic organisms where jellyfish and corals also belong to. Hydra doesn’t just mysteriously appear in your tank. They are often introduced to the aquarium from an external source. Once inside the tank, the abundance of food sources will promote its growth and multiplication.

Aquarists often find Hydra a nuisance in their fish tanks, however there are also those that find them interesting and let them be. Hydra in tanks is often difficult to eradicate, however, it is not impossible.

Big Fish for The Marine Aquarium!

Clown Trigger Fish (Balistoides conspicillum) One type of marine aquarium never fails to create a stir, the fish-only tank containing BIG fish! The sight of large slices of brightly coloured piscine flesh cruising around an equally spacious aquarium is enough to make anyone's heart beat a little quicker.


The Micro Shrimp Tank

Blood Shrimp (Lysmata debelius) Most of my regular readers will already be aware that, on the whole, I do not condone small marine tanks; that is, tanks with a nett volume of less than 20 gallons (91 litres). They are usually very unstable as far as water parameters are concerned and subsequently exert...


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