What I Learned as a Newbie Fishkeeper

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I wanted to bring nature indoors so I decided to give fishkeeping a try! Here’s what I learned during my first year in the hobby:

  • Buy the biggest tank you can afford (and have space for)

Small tanks are more sensitive to changes in its parameters and will require more maintenance

  • Cycle the tank before adding fish

This takes a few weeks and affects water quality and fish health. See a video here or read an article here

  • Water quality is key

I use drinking water for my tank or tap water that has been stocked for a while. I’ve been using API’s stress coat and stress zyme since the beginning!

  • Hang on back filters (HOB) are convenient but may require more maintenance than a sponge filter

I use HOB for my small tank, and a sponge filter for the larger one

  • Use real plants that are compatible with your chosen fish

I have panda corydoras, bettas and some apple snails. Since the pandas are always digging, a planted aquarium wasn’t easy to maintain. Anubias on stones and driftwood, moss balls on ceramic sand are simple and looks amazing! I’ve been using Seachem’s flourish advance to fertilize the plants since the beginning

  • Do your research before buying fish

Some fish aren’t compatible with others, and have different environmental requirements so it’s important to get tankmates that can thrive together

  • Keep fish food dry

When water gets into the dry fish food container, they get spoiled! I like Hikari, Azoo and Ocean Nutrition

Here are my favorite stores in Manila:

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