Of the 90.5 million households in America that own a pet, 14.7 million own a fish.

Reef aquariums are beautiful additions to most living spaces and come with many benefits to the casual observer. Creating your ecosystem allows you to learn more about the natural world while experiencing it firsthand.

Building a reef aquarium is quite a good challenge and requires understanding procedures, biodiversity, patience, and some extra cash to invest in.

We’re here to help! Keep reading below to see everything you’ll need to build the perfect reef aquarium.

Decide on the Reef Aquarium Setup

If you want to build an aquarium, determine the kind of fish and other marine life you can keep and the setup and equipment you’ll need. A nano reef aquarium is a good option for beginners, as it’s a smaller and simpler setup. A giant reef aquarium will require more time, effort, and money, but it can be gratifying.

Gather Your Aquarium Supplies

You’ll need an aquarium tank, live sand, live rock, and a protein skimmer. You’ll also need to purchase some fish and invertebrates compatible with the plants, biofilter, and water parameters you will make.

If you’re using a dry reef rock, ensure it is thoroughly conditioned before putting it inside the aquarium. Be sure to research how to prepare and use your aquarium supplies.

Saltwater and Water Testing

You’ll need to ensure your saltwater is the right salinity for your aquarium fish and corals. To do this, you’ll need to test the water with a hydrometer.

It would be best if you made sure the water is properly aerated. An air pump and stone can help with this.

Don’t forget to test the water for ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. Test kits and aquarium equipment are available at your local fish store to help condition your tank water before adding fish and plants.

Install Lighting

You must purchase the proper bulbs, ballasts, and other lighting fixtures. Most reef aquariums require special lighting to maintain the ecosystem’s delicate balance. Without the appropriate lighting, many of the smaller organisms in the reef aquarium will not be able to thrive.

In addition, the wrong type of lighting can cause algae to grow out of control. This leads to poor water quality and an unhealthy environment for your fish, aquarium plants, and other inhabitants.

Have a Proper Filtration System

A protein skimmer is a common type of filtration system in reef aquariums. Protein skimmers remove dissolved organic compounds from the water, which helps to keep the water quality high and the aquarium healthy.

Other filtration systems include mechanical filters, which remove particulate matter from the water, and chemical filters, which remove dissolved compounds.

Invest in a Heater and Thermometer

Most reef aquariums are kept between 74-82 degrees Fahrenheit, so choosing a heater that can accurately and consistently maintain these temperatures is essential. Additionally, you’ll need a thermometer to monitor the water temperature when you build an aquarium. A digital thermometer is best for the most accurate readings.

Have a Functional Ecosystem in Your Aquarium

If you’re interested in starting your reef aquarium, prepare everything you need to get started. Choose the right tank and know the type of water you’ll be using. Proper lighting and filtration are also essential for the ecosystem of your reef aquarium.

With a bit of patience and effort, you can create a beautiful and thriving reef aquarium of your own.

If you’re looking for more tips and advice, please visit our blog today!