Hello to all readers of the LVR series of blogs and everyone who is part of the HART network. My name is Robert, you can find my author page here . I will be here at PetLvr.com and also over at FishLvr.com, where I will be writing about my passion in life…Fish!
I have had a few pets throughout my life including rabbits, guinea pigs, mice and rats but the ones that I have a real obsession with are my pet fish. My first encounter with keeping aquarium fish started in my childhood when my sister and I kept a pair of goldfish in a small aquarium. We cleaned the water out once a week and fed the fish daily.
I began to read books to find out more information about fish and how I could better care for them. As my interest in the hobby grew, I learned the proper way to do things and I decided to buy an all-in-one tropical aquarium kit with a heater, adequate filtration and suitable lighting. I added gravel to the bottom of the tank planted the tank with the oxygenating aquatic plant Elodea densa for decoration. When the tank was ready, I was able to introduce five White Cloud Mountain Minnows (Tanichthys albonubes) , which are a very good beginner tropical fish.
As my interest in the hobby has grown, so has my collection of aquariums and fish and over my time keeping pet fish I have had experience with most species that are commonly available in the trade. I have gone through several tank changes and upgrades and ventured into the saltwater side of the hobby. I currently have three tanks:
Tank 1 – My reef aquarium
My reef aquarium is a 55gallon tank designed specifically for live corals. The tank is stocked with an assortment of snails and hermit crabs, which are there to keep the tank clean of algae and detritus. It is very understocked in terms of fish and currently houses one Ocellaris Clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris) and a Green Mandarin (Synchiropus splendidus) . The aquarium runs on a fairly simple system, using live rock and protein skimming for filtration, together with strong flow and lighting to benefit the corals. I have included a video below, which was taken a year ago and the corals have grown a lot in that time.
Tank 2 – My coral propagation system
My second aquarium system is a 7x1x2ft coral propagation system. The overall system volume is around 150 gallons including the sump. I use this tank to grow corals from cuttings that I take from my main reef tank. When cuttings (known as frags) have grown to a suitable size and have firmly attatched to rocks, they can be given away to fellow hobbyists or exchanged with local fish shop for new fish, corals and equipment. This aquarium is home to two fish: a Bristlenose tang (Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis) and a Scopas tang (Zebrasoma scopas) .
Tank 3 – My cichlid aquarium
This is a 10 gallon Lake tanginyika biotope housing a pair of juvenile lake tanginyika cichlids known as Brevis (Neolamprologus brevis) . It is planted with straight vallis and decorated with different sized sand and gravel and barnacle shells. These fish are known as shelldwellers or ‘shellies’ as they live inside small shells.
I hope you enjoyed this brief introduction to me and my pet fish and I look forward to sharing more with you all in future posts. At PetLvr.com, I will write from my own experiences and research about the general aspects of keeping a healthy aquarium including fish health, equipment and breeding. On FishLvr.com you will find more information about specific species of fish.