Seahorses in the Community Aquarium – Companions for Live Food Specialists

Seahorse
Hello, Frank Indiviglio here.  Seahorse husbandry has advanced quite a bit in recent years, with several species having now been bred in captivity.  One stumbling block, however, is the near impossibility of keeping Seahorses with other marine creatures.  Seahorses are slow, methodical hunters, and the live foods they require are also favored by other fishes.  In typical community aquariums, food is gobbled up by other species before the Seahorses even know its feeding time.  But there are some options…following are a few creatures that I’ve experimented with over the years.

Pipefishes

Pipefishes are classified with Seahorses in the order Syngnathiformes, and are also confirmed live-food specialists that hunt in a similarly slow manner.  They are the best choice as Seahorse companions –all those I’ve kept have gotten along very well with Seahorses.

The Banded Pipefish, Doryrhamphus dactyliophorus, strikingly marked in red and yellow, makes a spectacular tank mate for tropical Seahorses. Read More »

Aquarist First Aid – Bristleworm Spines

BristlewormAlmost every saltwater aquarium that has had live rock or corals has bristleworms. They may not be obvious, you may not see them, but chances are that they are there…and their “attacks” are some of the most common injuries that hobbyists encounter. Read More »

The Uncertain Future of Seasmart

Reef Soft CoralA few months ago I wrote about SeaSmart, a new program/company planning to revolutionize the way livestock is collected and handled, before it ends up in a local retail store. The program was working out extremely well, with an influx of sustainable Papua New Guinea fish to the market every week. The aquaculture portion of the company was on the verge of sending out the first coral frags in the coming months.

Suddenly, at the end of last year, exports from PNG stopped. Read More »

Using Undergravel Filters to Their Full Potential

Undergravel FilterWith all of the technological advances in the aquarium hobby, I thought it would be nice to take a look at one of the most rudimentary and long-standing pieces of equipment in the industry – the Undergravel Filter.

Undergravel filters get a pretty bad rap. They are sometimes considered to be a relic of aquarium history, but are they still serviceable? Some hobbyists swear by them and some hobbyists swear at them. How your tank runs using an undergravel filter is dependent on a couple of factors – set up and maintenance. Let’s take a look at some of the common problems associated with undergravel filters and explore some solutions. Read More »

Creating Unique Betta Bowls

BettaI don’t think that there is any great debate over what makes an ideal “starter fish”. For decades, bettas have been recommended and successfully kept by budding aquarists of all ages. These little fish can lure just about anyone with their brilliant colors and impressive fin displays. They make great starter fish because they are low maintenance and not very demanding. A few bits of food and a weekly partial water change is about all they need. For just a few dollars and with a little creativity, anyone can have a beautiful betta habitat in their home or office. Read More »