The Right Aquarium for You

Setting up a new fish tank in your home is exciting! If this is your first time purchasing and setting up an aquarium, you may be wondering what the most important factors are in choosing the appropriate tank for you. Let's start with the basics:

TANK TYPE
Although it may sound counter-intuitive, the larger the aquarium, the easier it is to care for. A large aquarium also enables you to have a greater variety of fish colors and types. Select a size that best fits a spot where you can enjoy your tank and view it from anywhere in the room. Keep in mind that the smaller your aquarium is, the more vulnerable your fish will be to any sudden changes in water parameters. Giving fish space to swim and grow will allow them to reach their full potential with spectacular colors. A 20-gallon tank (or larger) may be the right choice, allowing for greater selection of fish types.

AQUARIUM MATERIAL
You will have the option to choose either a glass or acrylic aquarium. Acrylics are prone to scratching, while glass is harder to scratch but can be easier to break if mishandled. Either type of aquarium is acceptable for both freshwater and saltwater aquariums.
You'll want to make sure you have the proper algae scraper depending on your tank type, as API® offers both a glass and acrylic scraper option.

WATER TYPE
Many beginner fish owners start with a freshwater tank, which is conducive to most popular fish species, including Goldfish, Guppies, and Bettas. Within freshwater tanks, you will need to decide whether your aquarium will be a cold water or tropical tank, and populate it with the appropriate fish based on your selection. A tropical community of fish will need an aquarium heater to keep water warm enough for them to thrive. If you're considering a marine (or saltwater) tank, know that there will be different factors to take into consideration, such as whether to introduce reefs and corals to your aquarium or start with only fish.

YOUR FISH
As mentioned previously, the type of fish you select will depend upon the type of aquarium you're interested in (or vice versa). If you have your heart set on a Clownfish (like Nemo), or a Tang (like Dory), then only saltwater will do. If you really like Bettas, a small aquarium (5 gallon) could be your tank choice. When considering the fish you will own, it is important to plan on an aquarium they need based on their adult size, as they will grow. Whichever direction you go, make sure that you have the correct size tank to healthily accommodate your type of fish.
Once you've made these initial decisions, the fun can begin as you start your aquarium and acclimate your fish to their new home! But before you start, you need to learn more about what is needed for their environment and nutrition.

Here are a few perfect products for starting a new aquarium:
• API® STRESS COAT® makes tap water safe for fish.
• API® QUICK START® immediately starts the aquarium cycle.
• API® AQUARIUM SALT promotes fish health.

For The Beginner