If you have planned to own an aquarium, then you have come across various myths about the differences between freshwater and saltwater fish tanks. To most aquarists, the saltwater fish tanks feel something alien, unlike freshwater ones. But what is the reality? Let’s find out:
1. Freshwater Aquarium Is Easy To Keep
People come up with various reasons why they think a freshwater fish tank is easier to keep than a saltwater one. The actual reason is the maintenance of the aquarium condition.
In the sea or the ocean, the water condition (pH, chloride, salinity, etc.) mostly doesn’t change. So, for saltwater fish, the living conditions remain the same throughout. For that reason, the ocean’s water conditions are known as stable and consistent.
In many freshwater environments, cyclic changes happen due to drying and flooding. These changes impact water’s chemical composition and its temperature. Freshwater ecosystems have dynamic and inconsistent water chemistry.
Freshwater fish can live in a changing environment as they are evolved like that, but not the saltwater fish. If the environment of the saltwater fish tank is not right, it will be lethal to saltwater fish. This is the actual reason that the freshwater fish tank is easy to keep.
2. Saltwater Aquarium Is Expensive Than Freshwater
As commonly stated, the freshwater fish tank is much cheaper than its saltwater counterpart. This is because of the running costs and setup costs.
It’s true that a saltwater fish tank is of twice more expensive than the fresh water tank. For saltwater, the equipment is more, and so the expense becomes double as you would need protein skimmers, powerheads and also some live rock. Then again, the saltwater fish are costlier than a freshwater fish.
And then finally, the running cost of the saltwater fish tank is way higher as the water testing kits are costly. Apart from that, you need a lot of salt. And it is not a myth yet the truth.
3. Beginner Aquarists Should Avoid Saltwater Fish Tank
If you have read any fishkeeping article for beginners or know an aquarist, you may have heard that no beginners should start with a saltwater tank.
The reasons are various for people to say that: the difficulty, complexity, and cost. It’s true that taking care of saltwater tanks with fish is very expensive, unlike the freshwater equivalent. As a beginner there’s a higher probability that you will make some mistake which will lead you to lose fish. So, it is better than all the things you should learn is with a cheaper fish and tank. That way, you will not lose a lot of fortune.
The condition complexity of saltwater tanks depends on what type of aquarium you want to own. Suppose you want a reef tank which adds humongous complexity to the water. This is another reason for a beginner to start with less complex freshwater tank and fish.
When it is a beginner, yes, the saltwater tanks are difficult to maintain as the tanks require more maintenance. Water chemistry has to be almost accurate. But if you are serious, you can also get over the difficulty by changing the water and going through a cleaning very often. So a beginner can get a saltwater tank at the beginning of building a fish tank.