Employee blogs written by Mike D

Freshwater Nano Fish

»Posted by on Nov 16, 2018 in Blog, Conservation, Education, Freshwater Fish, Mike D, News | Comments Off on Freshwater Nano Fish

Freshwater Nano Fish               Nano aquariums have been popular for quite some time.  They can light up a desk or kitchen counter top and can easily be the center of attention in any room.  These small aquariums, generally 10 gallons or less, can be a great alternative for those that feel a large aquarium is too much work or too daunting.  Nano tanks do come with some challenges.  The main challenge is that with less water volume there will be a more rapid shift in water quality.  It is important to be consistent with regular weekly water changes for the long term success of the aquarium.  The best looking nano tanks in my opinion are ones that are fully planted.  With the use of driftwood, various stones, and lush green plants you can turn a glass box of water into an underwater oasis.  I’ve seen some professionally designed nano tanks that will make you think you’re looking at a miniaturized mountain range.  The limit is your imagination.              Now onto the main attraction, the fish!  Here at Absolutely Fish we carry a wide selection of nano fish to choose from.  One of our most popular species is the celestial pearl danio.  This fish is relatively new to the hobby, only being discovered in 2006 out of Myanmar.  This micro-danio will reach an adult size of about 3/4 of an inch.  They possess bright red fins and a brown body covered in gold spots.  They are quite active and can be kept with many other tetras, rasboras, and peaceful barbs.             Another extremely popular fish we regularly stock is the Amanda tetra, also known as the ember tetra.  These miniature tetras come from the Amazon and are great schooling fish.  They are a solid orangey-red color and are surprisingly hardy for their size.             One of my favorite fish selections for nano tanks are dwarf corys.  The two species we most commonly see are Corydoras habrosus and Corydoras pygmaes.  These cory catfish are a schooling fish so a group of five or more is recommended.  They prefer a sandy or smooth substrate and a diet consisting of small sinking pellets and bloodworms.             Another colorful option for a nano aquarium would be Endlers Livebearers.  Endlers are a form of guppy native to Venezuela.  Males reach a maximum size of 1 inch and females closer to 2 inch.  The males possess all the color and come in many different color varieties.  Some of the colors we regularly bring in are the flaming pink, electric blue, and yellow cobras.  Be careful mixing males and females because they are prolific breeders. Other than fish we do bring in some interesting invertebrates to add another dynamic to your nano aquarium.  Thai micro crabs are quickly becoming a crowd favorite.  Their care is similar to that of fancy shrimp.  They require very clean water and lots of plants to hide.  They should be kept with only other small peaceful fish.  These crabs are omnivorous and will spend most of their day foraging for microorganisms.             Recently we have seen the popularity in nerite snails surge.  We now regularly carry a few varieties of these excellent algae eating snails.  We regularly stock the zebra nerites and tiger nerites.  On occasion we will bring in fancy horned nerites and red racer nerite snails.             Here at Absolutely Fish we do our very best to bring in only quality fish from expert supply chains.  This is as important to us as well as you.  We encourage you to come to our shop and discover what you love and learn from...

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Fancy Goldfish Trending Now!

»Posted by on Mar 14, 2018 in Blog, Mike D | Comments Off on Fancy Goldfish Trending Now!

Fancy Goldfish Trending Now written by Mike De Olivera   The fancy goldfish has always been the classic beginner fish.  Many fish-keepers have been introduced to the hobby by winning a pet goldfish at a carnival or inheriting one from a friend or family member as a gift.  It is unfortunate for the goldfish that people think they can be kept in a bowl.  We encounter many customers who visit our store under these false pretenses.  Here at Absolutely Fish we try our best to make our clients’ fish keeping endeavors a successful and fulfilling one. To start, these fish get quite large.  They can live for twenty years or more and can be quite messy.  Over-filtration is key to keeping your goldfish healthy and happy.  It is best to go with a filter that is rated for twice the size of your aquarium.  Whether it’s a power filter or canister, bigger is always better and will help you from having to do such frequent water changes.  Preferably you should dedicate 20 gallons of water per 1 goldfish.  Goldfish also prefer well-oxygenated water so adding an air pump and bubbler is always a good idea.  The bulk of their diet should be a sinking pellet food.  There are many available that are designed specifically for goldfish.  To vary their diet you should also feed them some veggie-based foods such as dried seaweed or spirulina enriched brine shrimp.  The desired pH range is anywhere from 7.0 to 7.6.  We love using aquarium salt with our goldfish because it helps with gill function and is a great way to naturally keep down disease.  We also dose Microbe-lift’s Thera-P to all of our goldfish tanks at Absolutely Fish.  Thera-P is an all natural probiotic bacteria that works as an immune-stimulant and will out compete bad bacteria found in your aquarium and in the gut of your fish. We believe this sets our fish apart from the rest.  With this knowledge we hope you can enjoy the pleasures of owning these lovely fish.  The amount of different varieties of fancy goldfish is truly astounding.  No longer do you just see tanks full of plain orange fish with a flowing tail.  Nowadays you can choose from multiple varieties and color variations.  It is truly amazing to think that all of these fancy goldfish originated from the standard carp.  Here are some photos of the different varieties of goldfish we bring in to the shop.   Black Moor / Telescope Eye – Moors are known to be one of the hardier varieties.  This is the classic black moor but we do get them in Red or a combo of Black and Red colors.  You can easily identify them by their bulging eyes. (Photo by Absolutely Fish)   Bubble Eye Goldfish – Known to be one of the harder to keep fancy goldfish.  Recommended to be kept in a tank with smooth gravel and decorations and concealed filter intakes to avoid damage to their fluid-filled sacs under their eyes. (Photo from wikipedia.com)   Lionhead Goldfish – These fish originate from China and look very similar to Ranchu goldfish, which come from Japan.  Both fish lack a dorsal fin.  The Ranch goldfish are known for being a better quality fish with more of an arched back. (Photo by Absolutely Fish)   Ryukin Goldfish – These goldfish have a triangular body shape and were bred in Japan from regular fantail goldfish.  They tend to be strong swimmers, which makes them a hardy goldfish. (Photo by Absolutely Fish)   Oranda Goldfish – Originating from China this fish is characterized by a fleshy headgrowth. (Photo by Absolutely Fish)   Panda Moor Butterflytail – One of the most popular breeds available right now. (Photo from Javed Fisheries)   Pearlscale Goldfish – Another slower swimming goldfish.  Should only be kept with other slower swimming goldfish like ranchus, lionheads or bubble eyes. (Photo from The Fish Doctor)...

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The Beauty of the German Blue Ram

»Posted by on Nov 29, 2014 in Blog, Cichlids, Education, Freshwater Fish, Mike D | Comments Off on The Beauty of the German Blue Ram

Freshwater Fish for Sale – Absolutely Fish, NJ   The Beauty of the German Blue Ram   By Mike DeOliveira   As a young boy, animals always fascinated me. Whether it was the weekend fishing and crabbing trips with my grandfather or my yearly trip to the Poconos to search for frogs and salamanders, animals were always at the center of my attention. You name it and I probably kept it. I owned turtles, red-eyed tree frogs, snakes, rabbits, hermit crabs, and the list goes on and on. Keeping these animals as pets, I always wanted to give them the best home possible. It was on one of my trips to an unfamiliar pet store that I was introduced to the wonderful world of fish-keeping and an absolutely beautiful fish called the German Blue Ram. This pet store wasn’t like the one around the corner from my house. They seemed to specialize in freshwater and saltwater fish and according to their sign; they had the solution to all of your aquarium needs. As soon as I entered the front door I was met by a large planted aquarium, full of vibrant shimmering fish and bright green sword plants. It was amongst the fauna in this aquarium where I found the fish that opened my world to aquarium keeping. The fish I was looking at was the German Blue Ram. At this point I had never kept a fish before in my life. Not even a goldfish, but I couldn’t fight the urge to own such an exquisite creature. So naturally, I did my research. I came to find out that the German Blue Ram is a dwarf cichlid native to the Amazon River basin, located in Venezuela and Columbia. Cichlids are one of the largest families of fishes with thousands of species spread around the world. Its scientific name is Mikrogeophagus ramirezi. The underwater landscape in these areas are dominated by driftwood which gives the water a tea color as the driftwood releases tannins into the water. This causes the pH of the water to become acidic. The proper pH to keep your aquarium at for the German Blue Ram is anywhere from 6.0 to 7.0. This can be accomplished by adding a powdered buffer to the water you use for your aquarium. The ideal temperature to maintain is 80° Fahrenheit. Incorporating live plants and driftwood help recreate the fishes natural environment and also makes your aquarium look like a living piece of art. Aqua-scaping, as it is known, is a great way to express your artistic side and can be extremely satisfying when the end result is a beautiful underwater garden to relax in front of. The ram, also known as the butterfly cichlid, is one of the more popular fish in the aquarium hobby and it’s clear to see why. They are simply bursting with color and personality. The males are especially impressive. At about two and half inches fully grown with a yellow head and blue spots running down the side of the body, his beauty is unmatched. His dorsal fin is tall, bright red, and comes to a point at the end. His female counterpart is slightly smaller with more rounded fins and a bright pink belly. This fish is omnivorous and will gladly accept bloodworms or brine shrimp, as these tend to be more palatable. They will also generally accept a flake or pelleted food. These fish fit best in a peaceful, community aquarium but because they are cichlids, they still have their aggressive side. Unless your aquarium is larger than 40 gallons it is not recommended to mix this fish with other types of dwarf cichlids. Of course, having plants and places to hide can help with their aggression. They should only be introduced to an established aquarium and will not fair well if any ammonia or nitrite is present in the water. Maintaining pristine water conditions is vital for the rams’ survival. Other species of fish that I have found to be compatible with the ram includes various types of peaceful tetras and rasboras. Corydoras catfish and sucker mouth catfish also make suitable tank-mates. What really appealed to me about fish-keeping is that fish are found in so many different environments around the world. One of the most important aspects of the hobby is to provide the fish with what it needs to survive. Throughout my experiences I have learned there is no better way to do that then to try and recreate their natural environment. In many of my aquariums not only have I had fish survive, they thrived! The more you put in, the more...

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