Pictures some of the Most Beautiful Fish

most beautiful fish

African Clawed Frogs as Pets

Albino African clawed frogAfrican Clawed Frogs are often kept in aquarium fish tanks as new pets to add variety to the aquatic community so that the tank looks livelier. Sometimes they are often chosen as a non-fish addition and they are liked by most hobbyists because of their friendly and cute odd-sized flattened shape. However, don’t be deceived by the fact that these frogs can sometimes gobble up tiny little fish like neon tetras and presence of them in large numbers can most of the time lead to murky and cloudy water appearance. So how do we deal with all these problems and still enjoy companion of this active amphibian?

Unlike normal giant-sized frogs like the toads and other native wild pond species, the clawed type can be easy to look after because they will accept any food that you throw into the tank meant for your pet fish and that includes even dried fish pellets and live foods such as bloodworms. One problem you might face with having them is that due to their large appetite, your frogs can eat a lot and ended up very fat. You might want to control their diet though. However just like any enthusiast, try not to be confused between a young African clawed with a full grown dwarf frogs because both of them can actually look quite similar except that the dwarf type might not be suitable to be kept in the fish tank as they need to constantly swim up floating above water level to catch some air. In the case of an African clawed frog, they are completely underwater creature which doesn’t need to live on dry land and thus they qualify as perfect choice if you prefer a fully aquatic pet. See the insert picture which displays a perfect albino type clawed frogs.

An African clawed frog can easily thrive in different water environments with temperatures ranging to as cold as 20 degree Celsius and everything should be fine provided that ammonia and nitrite level is kept under control. Thus my advice is to get at least a canister filter and fluidized bed filter to keep the water quality in check. Their ability to adapt and coexist with other fish species like community corydoras or oto catfish, gourami and dwarf cichlids means that you can create a small tropical aquarium community that is fun to watch. However, be careful on your selection of tank companions because as in the case of smaller fish like neon tetra, the frogs will eat them while vice versa if you have aggressive predatory fish like the oscar, it will be the other way round as the frogs will now be hunted down for foods. Other than choice of companion which is obviously the first obstacle to having the pet, other follow-up issues that you might want to avoid is the development of dropsy which can harm your pet frog. You might want to check out more information on this to help you avoid the mistake and prepare for eventualities.

Adding them to the fish tank can be an exciting affair and while people will quickly jump into the fray and adding them immediately, there are a few precautions however, that we need to take care of and look into, in order to make sure that everything goes right. First of all, African clawed frogs can sometimes find a way to escape from the tank if presented with a perfect chance and if I were you, I would ensure that there is a proper hood and the filter tubes and underwater cords do not entangled together or else they can use that to crawl and jump out from the tank. To prepare a right environment for their home, although not necessary, it is best that there should also be sufficient aquarium plants so that they can hide in case they get frightened or ended up getting bullied by the fish. All in all, if these basic requirements are fulfilled, nevertheless you will find yourself enjoying the companionship of these little guys swimming along with your fish in the aquarium tank. Related topic: Small African Tetra fish

Some other non-fish addition which you can consider for your home aquariums:
Pet Turtle
Fiddler Crabs

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Common Fish for Brackish Water Aquariums

Brackish Water Aquariums can be as interesting as its marine and freshwater counterpart. It is a unique setup of habitat that can consist of diverse and wide range of organisms that thrive in water having sanity between saltwater and freshwater. Here we will look at some of the most common brackish water fish which you can consider for your estuarine home.

brackish mudskippersA small-sized pet fish that is often mistaken as an amphibian because of its natural ability to leave the water for long period of time in order to hunt for its favorite foods. In captive care, they require a dry sand bed area for their survival and constant feed of live foods such as prawns and insects will keep their vigorous. However, option to keep them to form a large estuarine community might not be feasible because the male species can be very territorial and often attack the smaller mudskippers.

mummichog killifishIdentified by its scientific name of Fundulus heteroclitus, this interesting group of hardy and well-adjusted fish is also sometimes called killifishes. The term killifishes include a broad range of different species and thus the name mummichog is specifically given to the fish that thrives well in this estuarine environment. In home aquariums, the fish if well-fed can reproduce quickly to form large schools of active pets and the males are extremely attractive with display of brightly colored fins especially during breeding season.

red scatophagusScatophagus are often kept as community fish as in its own brackish water aquarium or they can also be mixed with other fish in a marine saltwater setup. This type of fish species should not be kept alone and they must co-exist not only together with other tank mates but also among themselves forming a large group of 5 or more. There are a number of different variants, most popular the red scatophagus which display bright coloration and a healthy specimen can be very active swimming around the tank.

Finally another brackish water fish that you shouldn’t miss out is the extremely cool Archer fish.

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What you Need to Know about Koi Pond Filtration System

A Koi Pond Filtration System usually consists of two sets or separate units of individual system that work parallel to provide clean and crystal clear water supply. Two of the most common setup which you will normally come across that has become a standard in the koi pond industry, will have one part of the pond using a multichamber filter drawn from an aerated bottom drain system and another separate entity will be using an external pump combined with a surface skimmer to suck out water going to a UV sterilizer and then sent to a fluidized bed filter.

Overall, the system can be represented by the diagram shown below which depicts how each unit is positioned and installed in order to operate independently. As you can see multichamber filter system is usually positioned at one end of the pond while the external pump with UV sterilizer bed filter will directed with the inflow and discharge at another direction. Basically both setups are usually constructed on an underground compartment well-hidden so that the pond looks well organized without the pipes and filter housing visible.

koi pond filtration system diagramCombination of those two different systems is normally enough and by calculation is able to treat and handle anywhere between 3000 gallons to 7000 gallons of pond capacity and may even go to the maximum of 10000 gallons if everything is well managed. Having two parallel systems also have it advantages because at any time, you can always shut off one unit for servicing and maintenance but still let the pond working normally without affecting the water quality or jeopardizing your pet koi fish’s health. Each individual setup also has it own advantages and basically what lacks in one unit will be compensated with the other system.

Let’s discuss each of them going into details. A multichamber filter system as the name implies, will have several chamber units that work together to treat the pond water. The whole idea and main purpose of this setup is to create ample surface area large enough for growth of bacteria. Usually the most effective system is by using the vortex technology whereby water which is diverted from the bottom drain will be first be channeled to the specially designed vortex chamber in order to create a strong centrifugal force to remove off the large particles. After that, only then the water will be diverted to the chambers for filtration and biological actions.

The other setup is the combination of UV sterilizer and fluidized bed filter or you can either replace it with trickle filter which are more common and mostly used in industrial and water treatment system whereby it will involve using external pump to transfer the water and create a moving flow. Generally compared to the multichamber unit, this setup can actually handle higher volume and capacity and it treats most of the pond water. However, managing it can be tough because unlike chamber filter system, overall this will involve higher maintenance cost as you will be dealing with pumps and changing of UV sterilizer lamps. A trickle filter although can be very efficient but however, it needs constant attention to clean it or else choking with debris and fish waste will eventually decrease its performance.

More about pond construction and design including also facts that you need to know on the aeration system

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Pond Vortex Chamber Filter System

A Vortex Multichamber Filter usually comes installed together with the bottom drain during the pond construction. It is often used in large systems whereby there are needs to quickly remove waste and purify the water before it is returned back to the fish pond. Multichamber as the name implies consists of different compartment units whereby each and every one has its own different role and functions to play and it uses a combination of both biological and mechanical filtration to achieve it. Other than ponds, sometimes people also use it in fish farms whereby all the aquarium tanks share a common water system and this requires a filter that is able to handle large volume of waste generated.

Vortex is unique from the other aquarium filtration methods in the sense that there is a special chamber whereby heavy solids such as leaves, fish waste and algae are first removed. Scientifically, to explain it in engineering principle, vortex actually means subjecting the water flow to high speed velocity in order to create a centrifugal force so that heavy components will settle to the bottom. This is more effective than conventional filtration systems because unlike the others for example the undergravel filter that will choke up easily, vortex filter with the special chamber will avoid all these problems in the first place. If you observe your chamber construction design, you will notice that the water has to enter at the side of the box so that a centrifugal force is created, much similar like what you would get when you swirl the water in a rounded tub.

pond vortex chamber filterLet us now look at how the vortex chamber filter works and understanding the underlying principle. This is important so that you will know on what to do if choking occurs or if the water that is returned back to your koi pond is still dirty. As you can see from the diagram shown above and as what was explained earlier, the first compartment is actually the vortex chamber that functions to remove heavy and solid waste. Further on to the next chamber, the second one is actually filled with tiny bristle brushes that provide both biological and mechanical filtration. The next one, which is the third chamber, is filled with biomaze or a honeycomb filter block and finally the water will pass through the last compartment which is basically filled with either ceramic filter or sands so that a polish finishing is applied in order to get crystal clear water.

comparison between fluval and eheimComparing Between Different Fish Filters (Advantages and Disadvantages). How about other brands like the BiOrb?

Role of Koi Pond Bottom Drain & Installation Details

Nowadays, it is very common to see a koi pond comes equipped with the bottom drain system and a vortex chamber filter. Both are actually very important and plays vital role in maintaining a clean and well-managed pond environment. Let’s look at why this equipment is considered the “must-have” items and how it can help to ensure that your koi fish enjoys the cleanest and crystal clear water around.

A bottom drain system functions to remove the waste out of the pond and ensures a well-circulated water flow. Without it, stale and aged water will not be easily drawn out especially if there’s a “dead spot” due to your pond design preventing fresh water from going in to replace the ones taken out. The bottom drain and the vortex chamber filter actually work hand-in-hand supporting each other to ensure that in the end as much as possible water is taken out from the system and then treated by the external filter before it is returned back to the pond.

overview of koi pond bottom drain systemUsually old technology of a bottom drain device comes with just the top piece cover dome but recently most of the new units sold in the market are the one called the aerated type which basically has an inlet tube for air supply to go in and aerate the pond at the same time. For better understanding on it works and to help you visualize what is being described here, just refer to the diagram shown above so that it will serve as a guide to make your installation process becomes easier.

As you can see from the details, there are actually two major advantages using the aerated bottom drain system. First, the unit designed with the extra air bubbling feature actually allows more water to be drawn out easily sucking out dirt and fish waste which would otherwise remain stagnant collected at the bottom of the pond base. As the air moves in the opposite direction floating to the top, the counter flow movement actually creates a suction force that draws water easily from its surrounding area going to the drain pipe and then leading to the pond filtration system. Conventional bottom drain device although plays the same function as the old technology but however, in terms of efficiency, the performance and desired result wasn’t similar to the aerated type. Thus, most koi hobbyist will tell you to switch to the new system as it will offer more benefits and flexibility.

Another reason why most people would recommend using the aerated bottom drain system is because since it has an air tube inlet going in; this offers extra aeration capacity going to the pond system. Air bubbles that rise to the surface will create and allow more gas and water exchange surfaces and apart from that, naturally it also makes your koi pond look much nicer and presentable.

comparison between fluval and eheimComparing Between Different Fish Filters (Advantages and Disadvantages). How about other brands like the BiOrb?

About Me

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My fascination and interest towards aquarium fish has led me to devote my time towards caring and learning about this wonderful pet.

Aquarium fish keeping is a very challenging and exciting hobby. When I first started, I never knew much or have the necessary guidance back then because none of my family members were actually a keen hobbyist. And because of that, I’ve encountered numerous failures and the worst part is having to deal with dead fish every time when you started to grow fond and getting attached to my pets. However, I persevered and took steps to find out and search for information from other hobbyist, apart from the knowledge gained and learned from my own experience and research. The blog that I’ve created here is meant to share useful information and tips about aquarium fish keeping so that new hobbyist will not make the same mistakes that I’ve made in the past."

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