Using Freshwater Aquariums to Decorate Your Home

The simplest form of fish to display would be using a single fish bowl or a small 2-gallon aquarium. Using either would require some type of substrate (gravel) and decorations. You might decide to use cold water fish such as Bettas (Siamese Fighting Fish) or Goldfish. Both like colder water, which means it’s not necessary to have a heater. Fishbowls also don’t require filtration. Both Bettas and Goldfish enjoy a simple diet or flakes or pellets and would require weekly water changes. Be sure to keep them away from high traffic areas as too much activity is stressful to any type of fish. Bettas tend to be aggressive, so you can only have one in a bowl or aquarium. Goldfish do just fine alone or in groups.

Even if you are a beginner aquarists, you can keep warm water fish that are simple to care for. Warm water fish require temperatures between 72-82 degrees, meaning they will require a heater. Easy care species include Black Mollies, White Clouds, Danios, Swordtails and Guppies. These fish can dwell together in a community tank with few problems. All of these species are hardy, lively, can live on flake or pellet diets, active, small and long-lasting. The aquarium would require a 10 percent water change to keep the water fresh and healthy.

Aquariums can be decorated according to your personal taste, using any color preference and the many types of decorations are limitless, so matching any décor would be very easy to do. I personally have a 55-gallon aquarium with one Red-bellied Pacu. My tank is located in my dining room. My living- and dining room consists of off-white and black furniture. My aquarium has white gravel with black slate rock pieces, as well as a solid black background. Before the Pacu grew large, there were also black and white plants as well. The tank is on a black wrought iron stand and blends in perfectly with the surrounding décor. The only downside to an aquarium of this size is not being able to move it around at will. It is in an ideal spot away from windows to prevent algae growth, and it is also away from heavy traffic areas.

The aquarium is a great conversation piece, as visitors are always enthralled with the size of my Pacu and its care. My Pacu is about the length of my forearm and will eventually need a larger tank to support his girth. What started off as a way to fill empty space has evolved into a large aquarium that holds a lone fish species and is a very beautiful decorative accent in my home.

Mary J. Gibson

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