Are you new to the aquatic world? I know it can be difficult at first, but it is a learning process to know what works and what doesn’t. I know that when I got my first aquarium I could not keep any fish alive; they lasted for maybe a week and then they were dead. Needless to say I went through a lot of fish before I figured out how to keep them alive. To date I have had the same fish for about two years; in fact many of the fish I have now I have had since they were born, which was about a year and a half ago.
When setting up a new fish tank it is important to not get ahead of yourself or act impulsively; you need to plan this out properly so that your fish will have the greatest chance of surviving. I strongly recommend thinking about how much room you have for a fish tank and then decide on the size; keep in mind, the bigger the fish tank, the more you will have to clean it and the more things you will have to buy. It is recommended that you have only one fish per gallon of water. One thing that is important to remember is that a gallon of water weighs approximately 8 pounds; so you need to make sure you have a fish stand or another sort of table that can support the weight of your tank when it is filled with water. Aquariums can be expensive so I would recommend looking for a used one if you cannot afford to purchase a brand new one. If you choose to buy a used tank, make sure that you look closely at the glass to make sure there are no visible cracks and that the sealant in the corners of tank is not worn away. Also, when purchasing a tank you need to make sure that it comes with a hood and light or you will have to buy a hood and light that fits your tank from a pet store. Many stores that sell fish items have starter aquarium kits that will include the tank, hood, and the light.
Once you have gotten your tank; you need to get: gravel (one pound per gallon of water); a heater (make sure you get one that corresponds with how many gallons your tank is); a water filter ( I recommend Whisper, but there are many brands of water filters to choose from, but make sure you get one that will support your tank size); any plants or decorations (use only those that are actually meant to be in aquariums); water conditioner, ph 7.0, and I recommend getting stress zyme, because it helps the fish to not become stressed. If a fish gets stressed they have an increased chance of dying; so it is important to add this when setting up a new fish tank, cleaning your existing fish tank (you should remove the fish during this process and put them in a holding tank), and if you add water to your tank. After you get all of these things you need to set up the tank by putting in the appropriate amount of gravel and then any ornamental decorations that you want; make sure that you rinse the gravel and the decorations before putting them into the tank. Next, install the water filter (don’t plug in until after you have put in all the chemicals and they have dissolved) and thermometer. After you do this put the appropriate amounts of the water conditioner, ph, and stress zyme according to your tank size.
Once you have set up your tank you need to let it run for about 24 hours without any fish in it to avoid new tank syndrome, which can kill your fish. After your tank has completely acclimated, then you can put fish in your tank. After you buy the fish put the bag of fish that the pet store gave you directly into your fish tank and let them float in there for about 15 minutes so that they can get used to the temperature of your tank. Once they are fully acclimated take the fish and put them into the tank, but don’t put the water from the bag into your tank because it can disturb your ecosystem. Now enjoy your new fish.