General Fish Supplies

Anyone who wants to start keeping fish knows that they are going to need more than just a tank and some fish to get started. Every successful aquarium keeper needs a wide range of fish supplies and equipment to take care of both their fish and the tank they stay in. Everything from the water to the light needs constant and careful maintenance to ensure a safe environment for your fish.

Getting Started

The very first thing you need to do before picking up any supplies is decide where you want to start. For most beginners, it's a good idea to begin with cold freshwater fish, and branch out to tropical fish later. Goldfish are the traditional first choice because they are both easy to look at and relatively hardy so they can survive your learning curve more easily than more delicate species.

The Tank

Once you know what you want to do, pick an aquarium. You don't want to start with too big a tank, but it does need to be large enough for the fish you intend to buy. Glass tanks are heavier, but also stronger than plastic ones. Choose your air pump and your lights at the same time as your tank so they all work together. You also do not want to forget the filter.

Setting it Up

Once you have your tank set up and filled with water, you need to cycle it before you can introduce fish. Run the tank for at least a week, checking the PH level daily. You want to use this time to make sure everything is working properly and that the water conditions fall within the normal range for your chosen fish. You should have both a thermometer and a test kit so that you can be sure the water is ready.

Just Add Fish

One mistake people too often make is pouring the water their fish came in directly into the tank. First put the bag in the water for no more than five minutes to match temperature. Next, you should always pour that water into a bucket and transfer the fish using a net. This ensures you don't change the water balance you've spent the last week fine tuning.