Fish keeping is a hobby that poses numerous challenges. For every challenge the aquarist may encounter, there are tools to help him overcome it.
Whether performing routine maintenance, feeding, or improving the health of fish, there exists a variety of equipment that aid in the duties associated with fish keeping. When it comes to problem solving, health issues, or emergency situations, having the right equipment can make all the difference.
Tools for Aquarium Maintenance
Aquariums need to be regularly maintained. This includes cleaning, water changes, and inspecting the fish. There are tools at the aquarist’s disposal that can make these routine tasks less of a chore.
Gravel Vacuum – This device makes water changes much simpler and drastically reduces the time involved in such aquarium maintenance. Gravel vacuums also make it easier to spot-clean in aquariums. When it comes to cleaning debris and fish waste that collect in the substrate, there is no more efficient method than the use of a gravel vac.
Extra Buckets – Buckets can be used for anything from water changes, mixing water solutions and medications, to transporting fish. They can even serve as a makeshift isolation or hospital tank for treating sickness or injury in fish.
Nets – It is a good idea to keep several nets of various sizes. Some fish are more challenging than others to catch, and having both large and small nets available can make such tasks easier. Nets can also be used for cleaning sand, collecting loose debris, surface skimming, removing excess food, and a number of other uses.
Aquarium Equipment for Fish Health
Fish keeping is all about maintaining the health and lifestyle of fish. The ability to thoroughly monitor fish’s health and tank conditions, and being able to remedy any health issues that may arise are second only to recreating the natural conditions the fish would experience in the wild.
Aquarium Test Kits – In order to create natural conditions for a fish, one needs to be able to monitor and alter water conditions. Any aquarist who is serious about keeping fish, keeping specialized fish, or trying to recreate specific water conditions need to make use of aquarium test kits. Not only do they help in creating such conditions and aid the aquarist in balancing aquarium water chemistry, but they greatly help in trouble-shooting problems one may encounter.
Extra Fish Food – Not only is it advisable to keep extra fish food on hand, but it is wise to feed fish a wide variety of foods. A balanced diet is key to good fish health. Research the fish’s diet and stock the foods accordingly.
Fish Medications – Fish get sick. As unfortunate and inconvenient as it may be, fish do become ill and must be treated. Keeping medications on hand designed to remedy common fish disease and ailments, including the odd medication for serious conditions, the aquarist will be able to handle health issues that arise and ultimately keep his fish in good health. If one prepares for the problems before they arise, the challenge involved will be that much more manageable.
Tools for Problems and Emergencies
In fish keeping, problems do arise. Sometimes, very rarely, those problems can grow into serious situations. All of the equipment and tools listed thus far can be of assistance in such situations, though others may play a greater role. Remember, the key to overcoming such situations is being prepared.
Extra Equipment – While it may not be of immediate use, having extra filters, heaters, or air pumps on hand can always prove useful in a pinch. Should equipment break down or should there be a power outage or a need to set up an extra aquarium, this extra aquarium equipment will prove to be invaluable.
Isolation Tank – When disease rears its ugly head or when parasites strike, it may become necessary to isolate a fish for treatment. Even in extreme cases of aggression or a leaking aquarium, an extra isolation tank will quickly prove its worth. Combined with extra equipment and medication, the aquarist can meet nearly any contingency.
It may be an old axiom, but it pays to be prepared. For the sake of the fish, and in the interest of saving the aquarist time, stress, and money, keeping the right equipment at hand and having the capability to deal with potential problems are essential components for fish keeping. The successful aquarist is not only someone who knows how to avoid problems, but someone who knows how to prepare for them and confront them with confidence.