Tropical Fish Tank Decorations:
The success of a tropical fish tank depends very much on the decorations! Not only will it determine how active and colorful (and most importantly, how healthy!) Your fish will be, but it will also determine whether or not you, the aquarist, will enjoy being part of this fascinating hobby!
The more comfortable fish feel in their environment, the more active, colorful and healthy they will be! To achieve this, it is recommended that you try to replicate their natural waters as closely as possible by combining them with plants, rocks, roots and substrate to that which most closely match the waters your fish would naturally swim. This can be a difficult ask for newcomers who want a great looking tank before reading through the endless supply of information available! The following examples of decor will hopefully serve as a starting point for your imagination to then run wild, whilst at the same time respecting the needs of the fish you choose to keep.
An Amazon aquarium: The centerpiece of an aquarium for South American cichlids is a large root or stump from a peat bog. This naturally acidic wood is perfect for recreating the biotope of angelfish, as well as that of many small characins such as neon tetras or penguin tetras. It is advised to boil the root before placing it in your tank to eliminate any parasites and to reduce the chance of it coloring your tanks water. Place this root in the center of your tank with smaller roots surrounding it, leaving a nice beach area free at the front once the plants have been added. The back of the aquarium should be covered with long stemmed plants such as sagittaria or vallisneria, with some large echinodorus on either side of the main root. Medium-sized Echinodorus parviflorus can colonize the middle area of the tank while dwarf species such as Echinodorus tenellus carpet the floor with greenery at the front. For a splash of red in the background you could also add Alternanthera reineckii along beside the sagittaria or vallisneria. A few pieces of slate piled flat on the ground can create terraces which will not only look good but will also act as shelter for your fish when they feel the need to hide.
An Indian Aquarium: Once again, wood is an important part of the decor, in the form of mangrove roots and fossil wood. The substrate should be a very fine gravel. Planting can be very weak here as Gouramis love the shade. The plants will also supply them with plenty hiding places and allow the males to define their own territory. Hygrophila polysperma, Limnophila aquatica and Limnophila indica are ideal for your background as their vital growth will quickly hide the rear glass and any equipment attached to it. Cryptocoryne becketti and Cryptocoryne wendtii along with Aponogeten crispus are an excellent choice for the middle of the tank while Cryptocoryne parva sits perfectly in the foreground.
Source by Jamie Lucy Mills