Fish Q&A Section:  Water Parameters


Saltwater Aquariums

We created this section mainly for you Saltwater Aquarists out there, to help you understand what the correct water parameters are for your tanks, and some of our importers/exporters, that have had difficulties with diseases, brought on by keeping fish in an environment that is not stable.

Yeah, Yeah, you read a book, or heard from so and so that you should keep your water a certain way.  Everyone tells a different story of what they do to their tank to keep it healthy.

One of the first things that anyone should do before purchasing fish, is to ask the dealer what their water parameters are.  This will ensure less stress on the fish, therefore preventing a disease to manifest.

Also, if you are living on the East Coast, or the West Coast, you must understand that the water parameters in your oceans (Atlantic & Pacific) are much different than the water parameters will be in your aquarium.  Many fish come from Africa, Hawaii, Fiji and other tropical areas with much warmer water, and lower salinity levels.

Proper Salinity Levels:

10.17 - 10.19  This is the salinity level that we use for our saltwater fish-only tanks.

10.27    This higher salinity is needed for live rock and coral in reef tanks.

Water Temperature:

78 - 80 degrees fahrenheit.  Temperatures below this will cause disease.  If you keep getting Cryptocaryon (Ich), this is the reason.

Proper pH level:



Freshwater Aquariums

Freshwater aquariums are pretty easy to take care of in general, depending on the fish you decide to keep. 

Water parameters for most of your common tropical fish such as livebearers, south american cichlids, goldfish, guppies etc, can be kept at the same levels.

Temperature: 76 - 80 degrees fahrenheit, pH= Neutral to Alkaline 7.0-7.6.

If you decide to keep more difficult fishes, such as Discus, water parameters are more difficult to follow.

Temperature:  84 - 86 fahrenheit, pH= Acid pH, 6.0-6.5

If you are keeping African Cichlids, they like a higher pH and harder water

Temperature: 78-80 degrees fahrenheit, pH= Alkaline pH, 8.2-8.4

In freshwater aquariums, it is better to adapt your fish to the pH of your tap water, rather than to add chemicals every time you do a water change.  If you are not breeding fishes, follow these guidelines.  If you are breeding fishes, you must be careful to duplicate the water quality from where your fish came from.


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