Keeping a Nano Aquarium is easier than you may think. Many years ago, the thought of keeping a miniature reef tank was just a dream. With advancements in filtration technology, manufactures have been able to create nano aquariums that are both functional and easy to maintain.
The most popular nano aquariums are the Oceanic Biocube and JBJ Nanocube. These two nano aquarium systems are very similar and one really isn’t better than the other. Each system comes in a variety of sizes ranging from 8 gallons to 29 gallons. These aquariums are perfect for anyone who is just getting started in the hobby and wants to get their feet wet. They are also nice for hobbyists on a budget because they cost less to set up and maintain compared to a large reef tank.
Popular Nano Aquariums
The Biocube and Nanocube are considered an all in one system, but some hobbyists may choose to build their system from scratch. There are many features of the systems that I like which include an enclosed system, upgradeable lighting and hidden filtration. If I were to build my own custom nano aquarium, the only basic change I would make would be to add a larger protein skimmer for better filtration.
If you were wondering if you a small aquarium can still be beautiful, hopefully this picture has cleared some of those doubts. In this aquarium there are species of coral like acanthastrea, duncan, zoanthids, frogspawn and monitpora. The owner of this nano aquarium is using a 150w metal halide bulb and has added extra water circulation pumps for increased flow.
Nano Aquarium Fish
A common question is how many fish can I keep in my nano aquarium. Most nano tanks can house two to three small fish, when water changes are performed every couple of weeks. Popular nano fish include clownfish, gobies, royal grammas, damsels, firefish, dottybacks, blennies, and cardinalfish. If your nano aquarium has power compact, T5 or metal halide lighting you will be able to keep a wide variety of corals. You are allowed to keep as many corals in your fish tank as you can fit. In fact, many reef hobbyists find corals are more interesting than the fish. To complete your underwater garden, you may also consider adding peppermint shrimp, cleaner shrimp, emerald crabs, hermit crabs and some snails.
Pictured above is a beautiful zero edge nano aquarium filled with different species of brain coral like scolymia and lobophyllia.
Nano Aquarium Maintenace
Now you may think that keeping a saltwater nano aquarium is difficult, but the truth is it’s not much harder than the average freshwater aquarium. On a weekly basis you should test the water and top off the aquarium with reverse osmosis water. Every few weeks you should perform a 10 to 20 percent water change to remove built up waste and replace beneficial trace elements. You will also need to periodically clean the glass, but if you have a good mixture of crabs and snails you won’t need to do this very often.
Nano aquariums are a great way to relieve stress and calm the body. Watch this short nano aquarium video and you’ll realizing how calming a saltwater fish tank is. Notice how the corals sway back and forth. They are also a great conversation piece and learning experience for children.
Buy a Nano Aquarium
The best place to shop for a nano aquarium is usually online. You’ll find that many vendors offer free shipping and sometimes they even throw in a free matching stand. If you are new to the hobby, I encourage you to buy the tank from your local fish specialty store. You want to build a good relationship with the fish store so that you get outstanding customer service and any extra help you when setting up your nano aquarium.