General Question

El_Cadejo's avatar

How do you set up a fish tank that looks nice?

Asked by El_Cadejo (34524points) December 27th, 2007

I’m new to owning fish, and ive grown quite a bit of interest in them. Currently i have a ten gallon tank with just gravel a fake tree, a hiding tube, and a megaman action figure. It looks horrible, so i was interested in how to set up my tank nice with plants and everything.

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4 Answers

scubydoo's avatar

Well you could go to your local pet store and look in their fish section to find items you think you’d like to look at in your tank. after all, each person has their own taste in decorations and you will be the main one looking at it day after day. I’ve always preferred a few items in the bottom of the tank and not over crowded with things. Ive also always preferred real plants instead of fake ones.. real plants inside serve as decoration as well as food for fish to eat off of.. depending on your type of fish you have, ask the clerk what type of plants you could put inside your tank for the fish to eat off of. fish often like plants and items to hide in and swim around in. Plants also attract hide baby fish as well for they usually will swim in the plants to hide

syz's avatar

I realize that it’s too late now, but a good guideline for beginners is to buy the largest tank that you can afford. The smaller the tank, the harder it is to regulate. Filter efficiency, temperature regulation, pH regulation – all of those fluctuate wildly in a small tank.

You didn’t mention what kind of filter you have. I have used undergravel filters for my smaller tanks for years – they are cheap, require minimal maintenance and are great substrates for growing live plants.

I like to design tank layouts that are natural looking. I use natural colored gravel, realistic (or real) driftwood, and lots and lots of live plants. A minor drawback to live plants is that you have to keep up with removing any dead tissue so that it doesn’t adversely affect your water quality. You also have to have cold-tolerant fish – plants don’t like heated tanks (no angelfish, discus, livebearers, etc.).

If you do use this set-up, you have to keep fish that tolerate cooler temps, a mildly acidic environment, and soft water. I like to keep an assortment of tetras because they’re varied, peaceful (mostly), and hardy. Keep in mind that live-bearers are very susceptible to disease and predatory fish (oscars, arrowanna) create nasty, dirty water.

El_Cadejo's avatar

well im planing on getting a 125 G tank so this new setup will be for this, i plan on having a porcupine puffer, a frogfish and some others in there. i just wanted a very natural look going on in my tank unlike the normal fish tank look. i was wondering if i go with sand with my substrate how do i go about cleaning the tank because right now i use a gravel vacuum and i cant see that working out well with sand. also my filter i currently have is a aqua clear with a bunch of filter inserts, its not under gravel or anything just a regular looking filter

syz's avatar

Puffers require a brackish environment, so you’re going to need to monitor salt levels. You can use special gravel cleaners with sand – it works the same way, just has a longer bell. I’ve never used aquarium sand in anything but my saltwater tank, but I assume it would function in the same way in a brackish tank.

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