Go Back  DVD Talk Forum > General Discussions > Other Talk
Reload this Page >

Talk to Me About Home Aquariums

Other Talk "Otterville"

Talk to Me About Home Aquariums

Old 04-14-05, 09:20 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Hero
Thread Starter
 
das Monkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 35,881
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Talk to Me About Home Aquariums

Buy a man a fish; he eat for a day. Teach a man to buy a fish; he have pretty home aquarium.

I've given it a lot of thought, and I think I'm ready to make the next great leap in my adult evolution ... buying fish to look at, not to eat. I know nothing other than fresh water fish are cheap and ugly and die, and salt water fist are expensive and pretty and die. I'm thinking I want to go salt water and maybe something in the range of 15 gallons. I've been told this is a lot of work but a rewarding experience, and I'm just dumb enough to believe the second part.

So, what do I need to know and how do I get started?

Thanks.

das
Old 04-14-05, 09:24 PM
  #2  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 11,134
Received 75 Likes on 63 Posts
Go salt and go big.

I've had both and salt water is less prone to disease, the fish are smarter and more interesting, and a big tank doesn't quickly die when something goes wrong (unless you break your heater or drop your lights in it or something).
Old 04-14-05, 09:30 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Hero
Thread Starter
 
das Monkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 35,881
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
X

(unless you break your heater or drop your lights in it or something).
Or perhaps a hard drive ...

Define "big". I'd like to put this in a relatively visible area, but to do so will limit my size options.

das
Old 04-14-05, 09:38 PM
  #4  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 11,134
Received 75 Likes on 63 Posts
50+ gallons.

I started with 20, then 30. They were way too volatile. A 65 gallon provided a much more stable environment.

If you think about it, the closer you can get to the ocean the better.
Old 04-14-05, 09:44 PM
  #5  
DVD Talk Hero
Thread Starter
 
das Monkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 35,881
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
On second thought, maybe I'll just buy an island then ...

Your logic is sound, but I just don't have anywhere I could put a 65 gallon fish tank.

das
Old 04-14-05, 09:48 PM
  #6  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 706
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Like X said, go for at least 50 Gallons. Small tanks are left for only really small species, which are very delicate as well (except for some clownfishes)
Rule of thumb is 1 Gallon per 1/2 inch of adult fish lenght. So, with a 60 gallon, you have 30 inches of fish to play with.

Here is a closeup of my babies on their 240 Gallon tank.

Old 04-14-05, 09:49 PM
  #7  
Premium Member
 
The Cow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Grazing in a field somewhere...
Posts: 22,393
Received 325 Likes on 228 Posts
Gotta agree with the bigger tank. We had small tanks (both fresh and salt) for several years and the death rate was high. Got a big tank (prolly 75ish gallons) and the fishies/fishys/fishes/fish flourished.

Just make sure to get some scavenger fish to help ease the cleaning.
Old 04-14-05, 10:15 PM
  #8  
DVD Talk Hero
Thread Starter
 
das Monkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 35,881
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I can already see this is going to end badly for me. Keep the knowledge flowing ...

das
Old 04-14-05, 11:00 PM
  #9  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
tanman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Gator Nation
Posts: 8,633
Received 549 Likes on 391 Posts
Have you never owned a fish tank before? If you haven't I might suggest you start with a smaller freshwater tank just to get your feet wet (he he). You probably don't want to end up sinking (he he again) a lot of money into a huge saltwater aquarium and find out that it isn't something you want to keep up with.

Maybe a 20 gallon freshwater tank. Try cichilds, they are very pretty freshwater fish that are hardy. They are aggressive though.
Old 04-14-05, 11:04 PM
  #10  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 8,527
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Or start with goldfish and plecos. When you're comfortable with them, plunk in some oscars - they'll take care of the goldfish. The ultimate in freshwater fish are discuses (disci?). If you can keep those alive, you can keep ANYTHING alive.
Old 04-14-05, 11:06 PM
  #11  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Somewhere between Heaven and Hell
Posts: 32,770
Received 462 Likes on 328 Posts
Originally Posted by I.Flores
Here is a closeup of my babies on their 240 Gallon tank.
Let's see.. a Unicorn Tang, a Blue Surgeon, a Clown fish, a Cleaner Wrasse and a small Damsel?
Old 04-14-05, 11:07 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Somewhere between Heaven and Hell
Posts: 32,770
Received 462 Likes on 328 Posts
Originally Posted by das Monkey
and salt water fist are expensive and pretty and die.
Old 04-14-05, 11:09 PM
  #13  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 11,134
Received 75 Likes on 63 Posts
Don't even bother with a freshwater tank. It's like keeping dogs when you prefer cats (or vice versa).

If anything, start with a smaller marine tank. But be prepared to spend a lot of time on maintenance. My theory is that the maintenance time required to keep the fish alive goes down in direct proportion to the square of the tank's volume.
Old 04-14-05, 11:17 PM
  #14  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 282
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I bred fish for a few years as a hobby and personally cichlids would be a good fish to go with at first. (Especially as an introduction to the hobby) You can find cichlids in many colorful colors and just a few in a small tank will be very easy to keep and mantain.(The investment will not be as big and then if you decide you enjoy it then it's time to go saltwater)There are a variety you can chose but for the size tank you are looking at I suggest something like Mikrogeophagus altispinosus (Bolivian Rams or another variety) they are not too expensive and look great. I bred them awhile back and rarely had any problems.

They have good personalities for fish, are colorful and do best when there are plenty of rocks and such. A good web site for fish is www.cichlid-forum.com. If you are looking for accessories for your tank e-mail me. I have plenty extra stuff lying around and will sell it for next to nothing.
Old 04-14-05, 11:48 PM
  #15  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Cusm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Moore, OK
Posts: 7,650
Received 24 Likes on 16 Posts
Originally Posted by cmatherne
I bred fish for a few years as a hobby

Moving to mature.
Old 04-14-05, 11:54 PM
  #16  
Cool New Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Flyspeck, South Dakota
Posts: 33
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
wow, I have to agree with previous posters- the bigger the aquarium, the easier it is to keep everything within parameters (and keep your fish alive and happy). We have quite a few tanks now (175 fresh with 4 pirahnas and 2 dozen cardinal tetras; 200 salt with mandarin goby, engineer goby, dog-faced puffer, picasso trigger & lots of live rock; 35 hex salt with two monos; 75 fresh with 6 discus -including a breeding pair!-, gold nugget pleco, peppermint pleco, blue phantom pleco, ghost knife and a few dozen cardinals; 30 gallon fresh with grumpy oscar, painted turtle rescued from the highway and two bristlenose plecos; 350 gallon indoor pond (purchased as a stock tank) with 2 breeding Doviis, 2 breeding Dempseys, two more bristlenose plecos and 3 silver dollars. I'm sure that i forgot something!)

We started with a 55 that was given to us, and it metamorphosed into this within 4 years - trust me, it is definitely an addiction. I would recommend looking at fresh and salt fish to see what you like, and especially evaluating how much time and effort you want to devote. Salt is more time-consuming in many ways, but the available stock is so much more interesting than many of the fresh... also, find a good LFS (local fish shop) to provide advice and support. The salt has been fabulous, we just got a shipment form Liverocks.coma nd there were all sorts of extra goodies in there- even if you choose to do a reef only, it is still fascinating to watch.) If you have any questions, please let me know- between me & the hubster, we can probably help.

Last edited by Galatea; 04-15-05 at 12:00 AM. Reason: i'm a dork and can't spell
Old 04-15-05, 12:25 AM
  #17  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Baron Of Hell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Seattle and sometimes hell
Posts: 6,203
Likes: 0
Received 8 Likes on 7 Posts
Sea Monkeys
Old 04-15-05, 12:25 AM
  #18  
DVD Talk Hero
 
D.Pham5GLTE (>60GB)'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Stick out your tongue!
Posts: 39,597
Received 32 Likes on 31 Posts
Originally Posted by hahn
Or start with goldfish and plecos. When you're comfortable with them, plunk in some oscars - they'll take care of the goldfish. The ultimate in freshwater fish are discuses (disci?). If you can keep those alive, you can keep ANYTHING alive.
koi fish are easy to keep alive too.
Old 04-15-05, 01:37 AM
  #19  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
Giantrobo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Gateway Cities/Harbor Region
Posts: 60,998
Received 897 Likes on 604 Posts
2 words....


Oscars Rule!
Old 04-15-05, 03:10 AM
  #20  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 282
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Oscars won't fit well in a 15 to 20 gallon tank. they really need at least 40 gallons a piece. They are cool though.
Old 04-15-05, 03:52 AM
  #21  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
Giantrobo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Gateway Cities/Harbor Region
Posts: 60,998
Received 897 Likes on 604 Posts
Originally Posted by cmatherne
Oscars won't fit well in a 15 to 20 gallon tank. they really need at least 40 gallons a piece. They are cool though.
Yeah I know. I was just making a comment.
Old 04-15-05, 03:57 AM
  #22  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
Giantrobo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Gateway Cities/Harbor Region
Posts: 60,998
Received 897 Likes on 604 Posts
I also agree that in aquariums Bigger is better if you can afford it and you've got the space, if you still want to stay on the smaller side why not try a small self contained Reef tank like the Nano-Cube? I've seen them set up and they look awesome. Obviously at that size you can't fill it to the brim with stock but you can still have a nice tank. Everything is self contained.

Last edited by Giantrobo; 04-15-05 at 08:17 PM.
Old 04-15-05, 10:23 AM
  #23  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: LI, NY
Posts: 659
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
go to reefcentral and saltwaterfish. 2 of the best place for info and on reefcentral there are local clubs of which 1 might be near you
Old 04-15-05, 11:27 AM
  #24  
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 148
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have had a 65gal saltwater tank for 10 years now and love it. If you want to get started with the feel of keeping a saltwater tank without owning one yet, do the following:

1 - open your wallet and remove $50
2 - flush it down the toilet
3 - repeat steps 1 and 2 every day or so!

I highly recommend reefs.org and reefcentral.com - great sites with experts in the field that post there and answer questions. You can learn a ton from those sites alone. Also visit any local stores and start looking around to get a feel for tank sizes and the types of fish you like.

Enjoy!

Dave
Old 04-15-05, 11:34 AM
  #25  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Beantown
Posts: 4,515
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I use to have a 55 gallon salt water aquarium, and although it was pretty admit it was just a huge amount of work, and a huge money sink..

Had all types of stuff, LionFish, Triggers, clownfish, Tangs. lobsters etc. etc. and then one day got some bacteria, because I didnt' check the water or something that day and half the stuff died off.. It was pretty annoying. I ended up trading in the fish I had left for money and gave the aquarium to a friend.. who wanted it for a snake.

I just got tired of all the monitoring of the ph levels, the constant hassle of cleaning it etc. plus that's once you get it setup. Even worse is how slow you have to add fish so it doesn't upset the setup etc. by the time you finally have a good amount of fish in there, it's cost you a bunch of money, even way more time, and will likely have a problem and lose one or part of the fish.

I think salt water setups are only truly for the rich, who can have peopel devoted to only taking care of them, and monitoring them. That is just my personal experiance though.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.