As compared to a freshwater fish tank a salt water fish tank is much more difficult to care for, there is no denying that. But, that doesn’t mean it has to be an uphill battle. If you have wanted a saltwater aquarium but were hesitating about the additional work or maintenance it may require you will want to read this article. Specifically, in this article we will discuss the basic steps involved in the set up, maintenance and choosing of saltwater fish and livestock for your aquarium.

First, you will need to decide which of the two basic salt water fish tank setups you want. The two main types are the fish only set up and the reef set up. The fish only set up can also house other species such as coral and clam but will not include any plant life. If you are worried about the cost or care of your fish tank than the fish only tank is probably the way to go. If on the other hand you are up for a challenge and have a little more money and time on your hands than the reef tank is a wonderful choice but you need to be prepared for the extra time and expense it will cost with this set up.

After you have chosen your salt water fish tank set up and the species of fish you will need to know how to maintain your new tank. Listed below are some tips that will help you to have a successful and healthy aquarium.

  • Monitor and check the ammonia and nitrate levels of your fish tank at least every 6 weeks. After about 6 weeks the water will have cycled enough that it will start showing signs of excess ammonia and nitrate, this means it is time to change the water.
  • Monitor the pH level in your tank on a weekly basis. In addition to monitoring the ammonia and nitrate levels, you will need to make sure the pH is at the proper level as well. Even minor differences in pH levels can be detrimental to your fish and other marine life.
  • Monitor the water in your salt water fish tank. You should check water levels in your tank every couple of days as it is normal for water to evaporate from the tank over time.
  • Clean the take of any algae. Over time algae will naturally build up in your tank, if you do not clean the algae from the tank it will quickly take over the tank and start suffocating the livestock. It’s a good idea to clean your fish tank at least every two weeks.

As you can see although there are a lot of steps involved with caring for and setting up a salt water fish tank if you keep the above tips in mind you can easily have a healthy aquarium for all your friends to admire.

You can get a lot more detailed information on creating a perfect marine fish tank from my favorite saltwater aquarium site here:

Author: Cris M. Stanford
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