One of the best things about the aquarium hobby is that there are so many possibilities. When it comes to setting up a tank, your only limitation is your own imagination, and you can make that tank as simple or as elaborate as you want. From realistic recreations of freshwater and saltwater environments to whimsical flights of fancy, you can create an aquarium that is as unique as you are.
If you have children in the home, why not create a kid-themed aquarium based on a favourite movie or TV show. You could, for instance, create a Finding Nemo tank, complete with clownfish and blue damsels, or a Little Mermaid tank decorated with items related to the movie.
You could also create a Sponge Bob Square Pants tank with decorations designed to look like the world of Bob and his underwater friends. You can get the kids involved and let them help pick the perfect plants and decorations to bring the theme to life.
Create your own mountain stream
Many species of freshwater fish live in streams and other small bodies of water. You can recreate their natural environment using an assortment of driftwood, rocks and natural coloured gravel. You can use air stones and other water agitators to recreate the movement of the water, and stock the tank with colourful fish you might find in a local waterway.
Build your own coral reef
If you have experience with saltwater tanks, you can use your aquarium to recreate the environment you would find around a coral reef. You can use an assortment of natural corals, as well as live rocks and reef invertebrates to recreate a coral reef in your own living room. Once that coral reef is in place, you can stock your tank with a variety of fish that come from natural reefs throughout the world.
If you plan to keep cichlids, it is a good idea to recreate their natural environment as faithfully as possible. Many of the cichlids sold in pet stores originate in Africa lakes like Lake Malawi, and those fish naturally spend a lot of time in caves and crevices within the rocks.
You can recreate this natural environment by providing a generous amount of rocks and arranging them to create caves and other hiding places. Providing a more natural environment helps with spawning behaviour and allows these engaging fish to be happier and healthier.