Buying fish is one of the most exciting things in the process of fishkeeping. When you are ready to set up a tank, all you have been waiting for is to buy fish.
However, it is important not to make any hasty decisions. If you make the wrong decision, it may bring you endless pressure, and this pressure has nothing to do with fishkeeping.
Make a fish list
Before you walk into the store, if you have an idea of what you want, it will help you make a choice. Once you are faced with a wider variety of choices, you will be at a loss, losing in what you should buy, or even risk doing something inappropriate.
Read the fish introduction on the website carefully, list the species you like, and understand which fish are suitable for being kept together. From this list, determine which one is the best to keep, and then choose it as your tank fish. Even the largest and most mature aquarium can not raise more than 10 fish at a time, and the stocking number of medium-sized tropical fish is best around 6. Six fishes are considered to be a school of small fish, and social species like neon tetras will feel happy in groups of six or more.
Once you enter the store, insist on choosing fish according to your list, because you know that the fish you choose can coexist harmoniously, and the fish will not be too big to exceed the capacity of your aquarium. If the aquarium does not have the fish you want or even your second or third choice, it is best not to buy it. Either go to other places to buy or let the aquarium shop help you to order.
Make sure the fish is healthy
Choosing fish is not an easy task for inexperienced people, but if the aquarium does have the fish you want, check it carefully to make sure the fish you buy is healthy. A healthy fish should have:
- clear eyes
- intact fins
- active (unless it’s a catfish that is very quiet and does not like moving)
- should not stick with long strips of feces
- the movement of fish gills should be stable or effortless.
- Unhealthy fish have some typical signs, such as white spots, plaques, and fungal disease. These signs indicate that the fish is sick and should not be selected.
- Fish shall not breathe too hard, hang below the surface of the water (unless they live in that way, such as hatchetfish), swim irregularly, or refuse to eat while feeding.
Observe the feeding situation of the fish
Healthy fish are always looking for food. When you buy fish, you can take advantage of this. If you are not sure about the health of a certain fish, ask the store to feed the fish. After feeding, the fish will become active and then eat the food.
Why the fish doesn’t eat?
- It is either unhealthy due to disease
- Unhealthy due to poor water quality in the aquarium.
- The fish is new or wild
- They are stressful during transportation
- They are unfamiliar with food.
Regardless of the reasons, you should not buy those fish that do not eat.
Ask a lot of questions
A good store will ask you questions about the suitability of your aquarium, and you should also ask them which species can adapt to your aquarium. If the store does not ask any questions, just lets you buy the fish you like. This is not ideal, because you may buy the fish that is causing you trouble. The correct way is to do your homework to understand in advance, then ask the aquarium store, and finally make a decision.
Regarding fishkeeping, one certain thing is, there are many aquarium shops to choose from. Don’t compromise on fish’s health issues or whether they can live in harmony with other fish. Wait for a while, and you will find the right fish you want.
Dos and don’ts when buying fish
Things to do
- Before buying, make sure that the quality of the water in your aquarium is appropriate and that the filter is ready for fish
- Record your aquarium size, filtration status, and water quality test results
- Make a list of fish you already have
- Read the label on the aquarium in the aquarium to make sure the fish fits in your aquarium
- Ask the store many questions about fish compatibility
Things not to do
- Don’t buy too many fish at once
- If you are not familiar with those fishes and don’t know how big they will grow, don’t buy such fish
- When your water quality test shows that the condition in your aquarium is not very good, then don’t buy fish
- If you are treating sick fish, don’t buy new fish