~ The 5 Most Common Mistakes You Shouldn't
Ever Make - Mistake #1: Lack of Research ~
by Eric V. Van Der Hope
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The 5 Most Common Mistakes You Shouldn't Have To Ever
Mistake #1: Lack of Research
by Eric V. Van Der Hope
Copyright © 2006 ReefKeepingBasics.com
It's so easy to get
excited about this wonderful hobby after seeing all the
beautiful fish and corals at your LFS (Local Fish Store). So
it's no surprise that many individuals, without any thought
of taking a step at-a-time, purchase what they see - almost
immediately! Did you know that a large number of fish
enthusiasts have found their way into this hobby exactly
this way . . . ? However, many of them discovered that they
could have spent Less money, Less time and Less effort if
they simply did the proper research.
Anyone involved in this hobby must be well informed of
what's involved. Multiple opinions should be investigated
from a good source. So be careful to not rely on just one
source of information! If you find that you are getting the
same advice from 2 or 3 different yet reliable sources -
this could be a start of a good decision.
The more you research, the more you'll draw from others’
experiences to help materialize your own version of a
saltwater tank or reef aquarium. So do not be afraid to ask
questions as the more you learn the more you can put to good
use. Continually read from publications you know are
reliable. There are many authors who have written a variety
of books on our hobby - they are priceless. So read, read
Here are some good books to learn from - but put them to
good use, simply just reading them will not do anything for
you! Use and act on the information you learn!
"The Conscientious Marine
Aquarist" by Robert M. Fenner
"The Compete Book of the
Marine Aquarium" by Vincent B. Hargreaves
"The Responsible Marine Aquarist" by Dr. Elizabeth Wood &
"Corals: A Quick Reference Guide" by Julian Sprung
"Simplified Reef Keeping" by Robert M. Metelsky
"Coral Propagation" by Anthony Calfo
"The New Marine Aquarium" by Mike Paletta
"Aquarium Corals" by Eric Borneman
"A Pocket-Expert Guide to Marine Invertebrates" by Ronald L.
"Reef Keeping Basics - Successful Reef Management" by Eric
V. Van Der Hope
There are also many other authors who've written hundreds of
articles for well-known offline and online magazines such as
ReefKeeping, Marine Fish and Reef USA Aquarium Fish Magazine
and the Tropical Fish Hobbyist. Their names are but are not
James W. Fatherree
Terry D. Bartelme
Take advantage of the internet. Search for information and
join some saltwater or reef keeping forums. Join a local
club - there is nothing better then meeting people in
Before you begin setting up your saltwater tank, you need to
know what you are doing. After all, you are going to be
providing a home to other forms of life and that is a
responsibility that must not be taken lightly. You need to
(these are the basics, but not limited to them):
Know the different species
and the types of conditions in which they live.
Know what species can live
together safely in the particular environment you have set
Have the proper lighting.
Have the proper salinity
Have the proper equipment,
such as filters, pumps, heaters, and lights.
Be prepared for the time
commitment – saltwater systems need consistent care and
cannot be left for more than two days without that care. You
may need to enlist the help of friends and family, in case
you plan to leave home for any substantial length of time.
Be prepared for the
financial commitment – start up costs are between $300 and
$500 and this is the low end! Depending on your system (the
choice of tank size and it's inhabitants) it could easily
take you well over a thousand dollars! Then you will need to
continuously replenish supplies which includes the salt, the
replacing of lights regularly, feeding the inhabitants,
replacing and adding the livestock and most important -
simply just maintaining the aquarium which includes paying
for the electric bill that results from the power being used
by your filters, pumps, heaters, ventilation or cooling
systems and lighting fixtures.
How much money can you afford to put into this hobby? This
one decision alone could be the deciding factor to start or
not . . .
The last thing you want to do is put your money and time
into your saltwater tank, only to have your investment and
the life you are caring for suffer due to lack of
W-o-w! So much to think of - but don't be discouraged! If
you feel your probably not 'cut out' for this kind of hobby,
think twice! You are. It simply comes down to how you
approach it and using the proper skills to organize your
time and money. There is no greater pleasure than to sit in
front of your aquarium and watch an amazing display of
colors and life before your very eyes! It's the most
relaxing form of medicine and can be enjoyed by all members
of your family and extended family (your friends)!
We've covered research as being a very important aspect to
guaranteeing success within this hobby. But there are other
important things to do as well - that many hobbyists tend to
You cannot haphazardly throw stuff together thinking
everything will be o.k with your aquarium setup! Without
taking the proper steps after the initial research is
completed - this mistake can surely be eliminated - which
leads us to review how Mistake #2: the Lack of Planning, can
limit the enjoyment you can get from this wonderful hobby.
Stay tuned for the next article, Mistake #2: Lack of
Planning, the 2nd part in the series of 5 articles that'll
be published in rapid succession!
Eric V. Van Der Hope is the Publisher and Author of the book "Reef
Keeping Basics - Successful Reef Management" as well as the editor
of the popular and informative newsletter "Reef Keeping Basics - the
eZine/Blog" - A Newsletter For The Serious Reef Keeping & Saltwater
Fish Hobbyist. Would You Like to Discover Exactly How to Build A Perfect
Aquatic Life Environment For Your Marine Fish Pets - Without Having to
Do It the Hard Way!? Then sign up to his complimentary newsletter valued
at $47. You can seek further information if you visit his website at:
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NEWSLETTER NOW . . . before I decide to charge for it ($79 Value).
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water Fish Keeping Cheat Sheet"
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