Top view of a dutch style planted aquarium by John Ciotti

Starting an Aquarium

Over our 40 years of serving the customers from all over the San Francisco Bay Area (and beyond), we've developed a proven approach for getting people started successfully in the aquarium hobby.

Many of our customers started with us decades ago and are still enjoying the hobby to this very day. We've assembled some things to consider when getting started.

Invest for Success

If you decide to get started with us, know that we will not attempt to sell you anything that is unnecessary and we will take the time to explain how everything that you are investing in will assist you in being successful with your aquarium. Many people have bad experiences with keeping aquariums because the store that they go to doesn't take the time to explain everything that they need to know to be successful.

Be Patient

Starting an aquarium is very exciting and it's easy to get carried away and go too quickly. If you take the time and allow the mini eco-system of your aquarium to establish properly, you're going to have a much better result. Adding too many fish too quickly to your aquarium can result in New Tank Syndrome, leading to dead fish and lots of stress.

Consider Live Plants

We've found that including live plants in your aquarium has so many benefits. It can establish the eco-system of your tank more completely and with much more room for error. Large amounts of rapidly growing plants process excess fish waste and provide an oxygen-rich, natural environment for your fish to thrive.

Also, live plants add a whole dimension to the hobby that you don't get with just fish. You can create amazing, living underwater landscapes that can be an avenue of creative expression and a source of pride. Imagine combining all the best parts of pet ownership, gardening and bonsai in a single activity.

A Little Maintenance Goes a Long Way

Committing to do a little weekly maintenance on your aquarium can make a huge difference. Make sure you find out what is needed to properly maintain your aquarium. Doing a little every week is much easier for you and much healthier for your fish. The most common mistake is to delay maintaining your aquarium until you have problems and then resorting to something drastic.

Don't Be Afraid to Ask Questions

We are here to empower you with the right information. If you are unclear about something, we encourage you to ask questions. Keep us in the loop. If it is not working for you, don't be afraid to seek additional advice. If it doesn't work for you, then it doesn't work for us!

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