Many people all over the world keep tropical fish as pets.


They’re lovely to look at and may even communicate with their owners, but exotic fish need a lot of TLC to live long, healthy lives in aquariums.

In that case, what necessities do tropical fish have?


As you read on, you’ll see that the needs of tropical fish and people aren’t all that dissimilar.

While oxygen, water, and food are essential for human survival, the same is true for tropical fish. However, beyond these necessities, other aspects, such as a comfortable environment, companions, and ample lighting and space, are crucial for their development and well-being.

In this article, I’ll explain the fundamentals of tropical fish care that every owner should know.

To what extent do tropical fish require special care?

For tropical fish, a large enough aquarium is essential. A typical example of this would be a glass aquarium sold at pet stores or acquired from a specialty website. A standard aquarium tank holds about 10 gallons (45 liters) of water, but the more room they have to swim and explore, the better.

A cover for the aquarium is required to prevent the fish from escaping. A substrate, like sand or gravel, should be placed at the bottom of the tank. They’ll have something to investigate, and the substrate can act as a filter to trap any food scraps at the bottom of the tank, keeping the water clean. This, however, requires regular cleaning to prevent the hazardous buildup of trash that can result from ignoring it.

Some may say it’s inhumane to confine fish to a tank and that they would be better off in the open.

Even though I see their argument, I believe that if you are a responsible pet owner, you will provide all of the things mentioned in this post to your fish to ensure their happiness and peace of mind. Many species of tiny fish have been successfully raised in captivity. Even though their lifespans are cut short, fish can flourish and be happy in a well-designed aquarium.

Purified water.

Tropical fish share the same need for clean water that we do.

Chlorine, which is included in our water supply and is beneficial to human health, is lethal to fish. Water for your fish tank must be treated with a dechlorinating chemical to eliminate chlorine.

If you have a lot of fish in a small tank, you may want to do a partial water change every two weeks to add dechlorinated water to the tank.


A filtration system is essential for tropical fish.

They won’t get sick as easily from living in contaminated water if they have one of these, therefore it’s crucial that they have access to one. Filters come in a variety of shapes and sizes, depending on the volume of water in your aquarium and the species of tropical fish you keep, but they all do the same thing.

There are fish tanks available that already have filters installed. This is the safest bet, as you’ll know it will fit your tank perfectly.

The ammonia in the water is degraded by beneficial bacteria kept in the filters. To prevent the healthy bacteria from being washed away, never use tap water to clean your filter media.

Accurate and Steady Temperature.

Cold water can kill tropical fish, therefore it’s important to keep the temperature steady. Since they lack the ability to control their internal temperature, it is your responsibility to ensure that they have a suitable heating and cooling system in their tank to prevent them from being unwell due to extremes in temperature.

Make sure the water isn’t excessively hot or chilly by using an aquarium thermometer. Checking the temperature once a day will give you plenty of time to diagnose any issues and find solutions before it’s too late.

Suitable Food

Food is essential for tropical fish. Live, chopped meat like shrimp, worms, bloodworms, daphnia, and brine shrimp are all acceptable treats for these creatures, as well as high-quality flakes, which should be fed to them at least twice a day.

Bottom-dwelling fish in your aquarium requires sinking pellets since they won’t swim to the surface to eat floating food.

The Catfish, Zebra Loach, and Bristlenose Pleco are all examples of tropical fish that eat on the sand or gravel at the bottom of their aquariums. Sinking pellets are required to ensure that their food is delivered to the bottom of the tank.

If you feed them properly, your fish will flourish. You’ll notice it in the radiance of their coloring and the way they engage with others.

After 5 minutes, if there is still uneaten food, it should be removed so that it doesn’t go bad at the bottom of the tank.

Overfeeding your fish can be easily detected by a daily surplus of uneaten food.

Excessive food intake might be just as harmful as inadequate intake.


They require a safe haven from potential predators and a quiet spot to go to when they need some “me time,” as even tropical fish deserve some privacy. This is vital for their psychological well-being, as they need to avoid being overly anxious from being constantly exposed or in danger when other fish come too close. This typically occurs when the tank is too full, which yours, fortunately, won’t be.

To make this more like their natural habitat, including rocks or ornaments with plenty of crevices or plants that they can hide in. You don’t want your fish to become stuck or hurt because the crevices are too small.

A further benefit is the increased oxygen production made possible by the presence of living plants.

Space to Swim

Many gallons of water are required for tropical fish to swim. The shoaling fish, such as Danios, Tetras, and others, like to dart around the tank in schools and require a rather large swimming area in which to do so.

Although they prefer to stay in the water when it’s time to rest they appreciate a dark spot at the tank’s base.


Tropical fish in particular do well with tank mates. If you only have one fish, it can get lonely, shy, and stressed out, thus it’s best to have at least two or three in your tank.

While certain species of fish do better when kept together, others thrive when introduced to different species.

When around other members of his species, a male of some species will display more vibrant colors, a sign of increased self-assurance.

The better the living conditions and the attention given to these creatures, the happier they will be.


Tropical fish require constant illumination.


This is significant since their timekeeping relies on the natural day-and-night cycle. Fluorescent or regular artificial light should be available so that the tank can be illuminated during the day without the need to shade it from the sun.

They require a period of nighttime as well.


Keep your aquarium lights on for no more than 10 hours daily.


That sums it up. If you want to dive into the amazing world of tropical fish, you may do it with confidence knowing that your new fish will not only make it through the transition but will thrive in their new environment.

More attention to their tank means more contented fish.

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