After you have put in all the time and effort to set up your aquarium, the last thing you want to do is stock it with sick fish that could cause a tank-wide epidemic. While you cannot completely prevent your fish from ever becoming exposed to disease, there are a few simple precautions you can take to ensure that the fish you are introducing into your tank are healthy. You can start taking these precautions before you even purchase your fish and, in doing so, you can lessen the likelihood that your aquarium will be exposed to pathogenic bacteria, viruses and other diseases.
How to Spot Healthy Fish
Local pet store's aquarium section
When you first set foot into your local pet store, before you even look at the fish they have available, take a look at the facilities. Do the stock tanks look clean or are they overgrown with algae? Do the tanks appear to be well maintained or are the water levels low due to evaporation? If the facilities in which the fish are kept do not appear to be clean, the chances of those fish being healthy are greatly diminished. If, however, the store itself is clean and the tanks are well-maintained you can move on to observing and examining the fish themselves.
Locate the tank housing the type of fish you are interested in purchasing. Observe the fish for a few minutes, looking for healthy activity and coloration. Healthy fish will be active and will not have any difficulty swimming – fish that appear lethargic or float near the top or bottom of the tank are likely affected by disease. The fish themselves should not have any visible deformities, the fins should be whole and there should be no patches of redness or discoloration on the fins, gills or scales. The eyes of healthy aquarium fish will be clear and, if you are able to observe the fish being fed, they should display an eagerness to eat.
Before Introducing New Fish
After selecting and purchasing your fish from the pet store there is one more thing you need to do before introducing them into your tank. Many aquarium hobbyists recommend quarantining all new fish for a minimum of two weeks before adding them to the main tank. Even if you have taken the time to observe and examine the fish before buying them, they could still be carriers of disease. Quarantining new fish is a simple and effective way to lessen the chances of your tank becoming exposed to disease. Keep your new fish in a quarantine tank for at least two weeks and, during that time, observe them for signs of illness. If, after the two weeks are up, the fish still appear to be healthy you can safely add them to your main tank.
Tips for Keeping Fish Healthy
Keeping your aquarium fish healthy does not need to be a complicated matter. If you are able to keep the water quality in your tank high and feed your fish a healthy, varied diet they are likely to thrive. To boost the health of your aquarium, and thus your fish, consider adding an EcoBio-Stone to your tank. EcoBio-Stones are made from porous volcanic cement. EcoBio-Stones are also infused with beneficial bacteria that will multiply to establish a colony once added to your tank. These bacteria will help to maintain the nitrogen cycle in your tank, breaking down wastes and removing harmful toxins to keep your tank water clean and clear. In conjunction with the aforementioned precautions, an EcoBio-Stone can help keep the fish in your tank healthy by keeping the water quality in your tank high.