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  • Writer's pictureStewart Kessel

Aquarium Maintenance - Daily Check List

Updated: Jan 8

What should you check daily with your aquarium?

Whilst enjoying your aquarium, it is essential to complete a few daily tasks to check its safety and ensure the wellbeing of its inhabitants.

1. Aquarium temperature:

Has there been any significant change (greater-than +/-1°C) to the water temperature from when initially set-up or checked previously? If yes and in a heated tropical aquarium, investigate to ensure that the heater and thermostat are working correctly and rectify as necessary. In cold-water or temperate aquarium, explore how to minimise fluctuations in the room temperature to ensure the aquarium water temperature remains more stable.

2. Equipment checks:

Check all the aquarium equipment, for example, lighting, heater/thermostat, filter, air pump, CO2 dosing, etc. is working as expected. Any faulty equipment should be repaired or replaced.

3. Headcount:

Are all the fish and other livestock present and accounted for in the aquarium? Remove any dead livestock as they can very quickly foul the water. Investigate the cause of any deaths. Signs of any disease may mean you need to treat the other livestock.

4. Visual health check:

Check your livestock for any signs of scrapes, nipped or discoloured fins, unusual growths, cloudy eyes, clamped fins, dull colouration and any other signs of parasites or diseases. Unusual behaviour of your fish may also be an early indication something is not right with their environment. Any of these signs need to be investigated further with tests of the water parameters and treatment as necessary.

5. Aquarium leaks:

Inspect the tank, pipework and if fitted external filter, to ensure no water leaks.

6. Top-up water:

Aquariums, mainly tropical, will lose water with time through evaporation. In particular, this is true of rimless open-top aquariums. Aquarium water should be topped-up to counter any evaporation, preferably with reverse osmosis (RO) water.

7. Remove waste & decaying material:

It is vital to remove any waste or decaying matter, such as uneaten food or rotting plants, as this will quickly start to affect the water parameters and hence the health of your livestock.

Do not forget the other daily tasks that you need to complete to keep your aquarium and its inhabitants in peak condition, e.g. correct feeding regime, the addition of plant fertilisers etc.

Author: Stewart Kessel CChem, MRSC

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