Tropical fish species saltwater

Saltwater Aquarium Types - FOWLR, Fish Only with Live Rock, Reef Tank

This is a general introduction into the three main saltwater aquarium types: Fish Only, FOWLR (Fish Only with Live Rock) and the Reef Tank Setup. When getting started with saltwater it is recommended to get the biggest tank you can accommodate. Bigger tanks give you more room for error when it comes to water quality.

Again, there are basically three types of saltwater aquarium setups:

  • Fish Only
  • Fish Only with Live Rock - FOWLR
  • Reef Tanks
Fish Only
This is the least expensive type to set up because you don't necessarily need the better lighting that the other setups require. Check out the Saltwater Aquarium Setup page to get an idea of the equipment needed, minus the live rock mentioned in that article.

In my opinion, even though this is the least expensive setup, a saltwater fish only setup is not necessarily the easiest to get started with. Getting started may take a little longer than the other setups while waiting for the nitrogen cycle to complete. Saltwater fish only tanks also require more frequent tank maintenance than FOWLR tanks. This means that you will need to stay on top of those water changes to remove the nitrates that are constantly accumulating. Having a water test kit is a necessity when keeping saltwater tanks. You will need to periodically monitor the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH levels. These readings will give you a good indication of the water quality inside your tank. It will also give you an idea of how often you should be performing those water changes.

As the name implies, this saltwater fish only tank setup is really for keeping fish only. You may be able to keep a few snails or hermit crabs to help control any algae problems. There are generally two types of fish only tanks. Community type tanks and semi-aggressive type tanks. The community tanks house species that will get along well with the other species in the tank. Semi-aggressive tanks usually house solitary individuals from different species. Unless you have an extremely large tank, it is normally not recommended to get multiple fish from the same species.

These saltwater fish only setups are rapidly falling off in popularity because of the great biological filtration functions that live rock can provide. We discuss FOWLR setups next.

This setup is the same as a Fish Only with the addition of live rock and better aquarium lighting. Check out the Saltwater Aquarium Setup page for more detailed information on this type of setup. The use of live rock has really taken off in the past decade because it really is the best form of natural biological filtration for the saltwater aquarium. It is called "live rock" because of the creatures and organisms living on the inside and on the surface of the rock. It can be very interesting to the look at the organisms and algae growing on the rock.


Cobalt International Inc. Cobalt 8-Pound Cichlid Fish Food Pellets, Large
Pet Products (Cobalt International Inc.)
  • Cobalt Pellets are packed with Probiotics in the form of Bacillus species Bacteria that support a healthy digestive system
  • Will not cloud water
  • Less waste for a cleaner aquarium
  • Cichlid Large Pellets (1/8 diameter) 8-Pound

Yes, it is a very serious problem, one of many

by ghodaza

Caused by the importation of exotics as pets and their subsequent release in south florida.
The "walking catfish" is another. There are actually a whole bunch of problems with freshwater aquatic systems in florida but the "walking catfish" one is the only one that's caught the public's fancy at all (presumably because it is seen on land at times). There are literally dozens of exotic fish species that are problems, along with plants, snails, etc brought in by the tropical fish industry.
As fucked up as florida's terrestrial ecosystems are, they're in great shape compared to her freshwater aquatic ecosystems in at least parts of florida.

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Secret Caribbean Island Vacations  — Businessweek
These shipwrecks host some of the world's best diving, with stingrays and 100 species of tropical fish making their home in the skeletons of Spanish galleons and British warships.

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