Saltwater Aquarium Basics

- Basic to advanced information about marine fish & reef aquariums. A growing resource with set up, aquarium lighting, chemistry, filter information too.

Freshwater Aquarium Basics

- A growing resource with information from filtration to smelly water problems with links to more specific top notch information such as the Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle

Read this FIRST before treating any aquarium/pond fish for disease:
Fish Diseases | How to Treat Sick Fish

A Clear Pond: Information

- Proper pond filtration, cleaning, care, chemistry, & basics for maintaining a beautiful garden pond

Aquarium UV Sterilization

- Use of TRUE level one or higher UV Sterilizers in an aquarium or pond

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Oregon Aquarium, Rogue Beer

Rogue Beer has created a special series of bottles for The Oregon Coast Aquarium and the Three Arch Rock, the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife refuge. A portion of the proceeds goes to the programs.

Rogue Beer, Oregon Coast Aquarium Roy W. Lowe, project leader for the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Oregon Coast NWR Complex, Brett Joyce, president of Rogue, and Dale Schmidt, president and CEO of the Oregon Coast Aquarium, toast recent donations from the Rogue Foundation to the respective agencies. (Photo by Elizabeth Chapman)

Here is an excerpt from the story:
Cheers to that: Rogue beer benefits causes
By Elizabeth Chapman of the News-Times

The Rogue Foundation donated $5,000 to Oregon Coast Aquarium and $1,500 to Three Arch Rock, the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife refuge, on Monday, Dec. 10 at the Brewer's on the Bay in South Beach. Rogue created a special series of bottles for both organizations and a portion of the proceeds goes to the programs.

The aquarium series includes: Sea Otter beer, spiny lump sucker T-shirts, Wolf Eel Ale, and Shark Tooth Ale. Three Arch Refuge has a specialty beer, the Puffin Pale Ale, which also provides the history of the refuge that was established during Theodore Roosevelt's presidency due to encouragement from conservationists William L. Finley and Herman Bohlman.

Roy W. Lowe, Project Leader for the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Oregon Coast NWR Complex, said, "We're very appreciative that this gets the message out on the refuge," and he added the grant monies will help fund education programs for the refuge.

Dale Schmidt, president and CEO of Oregon Coast Aquarium, said through their partnership with Rogue over the years, the aquarium has received $17,000 which helps fund the new, changing exhibits.

Brett Joyce, president of Rogue, stated the products will be sold at various retail stores across Oregon.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Winter Pond Care

As winter approaches it is important to prepare you pond for this seasonal change in conditions (depending on your climate zone). In the warmer western areas of Oregon ice is not an issue as much as in the higher elevations of Eastern Oregon.

Pond Autumn Leaves, fall However leaves that have accumulated from the many deciduous trees that grow in many of the western valleys are a problem.
Leaves that fall to the bottom of the pond decompose adding to ammonia, lowering ph and KH to dangerous levels and sometimes releasing toxic Hydrogen Sulfide. The pond keeper needs to either cover the pond with netting or remove leaves before winter sets in.
Also as temperatures fall below 60 F (15 C) in the pond I feed every other day or less, depending on fish feeding habits. Below 50 F (10 C), I do not generally feed as fish become much less active as their metabolism slows down.
It should also be noted that the protein content of the food should decrease as well while wheat and wheat germ content increase.

Here is a recent news article from Salem Oregon about preparing for winter:
Owners of koi prepare the hardy, colorful fish and their ponds for winter

In regions where icing will occur it is important in winter to keep at least a small section of your pond open for proper exchange of gasses (O2, CO2), if water can still flow into the pond through a water or aeration device, that will work. A minimum depth of 24” will provide enough water space under the ice for fish to hibernate.
An aeration device or pump placed about midway from the surface/bottom that circulates upward generally will keep an area of the pond surface free of ice and allow proper gas exchange. In deep ponds over 5-6 feet (1.75 -2 meters), thermal layering, called thermoclines, may exist. This acts as sort of an “inversion layer” similar to how smog gets trapped in the air in Los Angeles. This traps CO2 and Hydrogen Sulfide near the bottom which is dangerous to fish and in this case you need to add water pumps or aeration devices at the bottom.

For more pond information including Winter Care as well as more resource links as well, please visit this site:

A Clear Pond; Pond Information

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Shark washes up on Oregon Coast

Dolphin, shark, other 'oddities' wash up along Oregon Coast


Saltwater, Marine FishLast week’s stormy weather at the Oregon Coast led to some unusual finds on the beach over the weekend, Seaside Aquarium staff said Tuesday.

Beachcombers found a dolphin, a porpoise, a shark and a rare fish.

“All died recently, and thanks to enormous west winds, blew up onshore with the storms,” said aquarium spokeswoman Tiffany Boothe.

The long-beaked dolphin was the first dolphin that aquarium staff have ever seen wash up in the area, even though they are common to Oregon coastal waters, Boothe said. It measured about 5 and 1/2 feet long.

The salmon shark was only about 3 and 1/2 feet long and is a type of shark often mistaken for great whites, although great whites are larger by a foot or more in length.

Someone also reported finding a mola mola -- ocean sun fish -- which are rarely spotted on the north coast.

The washed-up porpoise measured about 2 and 1/2 feet long.

Another beachcomber, Terry Morse of Newport, found a bunch of odd jellyfish, some of which were still alive, he discovered, when he took them back home and put them in a petri dish to study them under a microscope. They began swimming again when put in sea water.


Not much I can say here except for this is a sad but interesting story

Recommended Aquatic Information:

Aquarium Lighting

The VERY BEST and most researched Aquarium Light information available on the internet.

Recommended Aquatic Products:

UV Bulbs

Optimum 254nm High Output µW/cm2 UV-C Hot Cathode Quartz Germicidal Lights

Friday, August 17, 2007

Male fish gives birth at Oregon Aquarium

Unusual male fish gives birth at Oregon Aquarium


SEASIDE, Oregon – At the Seaside Aquarium, dozens of fish have been born from what many would consider quite an unlikely source: a male fish.

A baby pipefish.
Pipefish are long, rounded creatures related to the sea horse, that have an unusual life process. The female pipefish has the eggs originally, but transfers them to the male. He fertilizes them, and then he is the one responsible during the remaining gestation period.

"We are not sure how long the baby pipefish will be on display," said Tiffany Boothe, an education specialist with the Seaside Aquarium. "The aquarium has had pipefish in the past give birth, but because of their size and fragility when born, we have had no luck keeping them alive. We are going to try a slightly new tactic, though we are not too optimistic that it will work. Because of this we also plan on releasing some of the babies into a local estuary."

The new tactics involve leaving them where they are this time, Boothe said. In the past, they've tried a variety of approaches to help these babies survive, mostly involving taking them out of the tank and putting them in another by themselves. They've tried variations on that theme, such as a tank with filtered water, without filtered water, and other combinations.

"Instead of putting them in another tank, we'll just do nothing," Boothe said. "We'll leave them in there, because that tank is a lot like the environment they come from, with its fauna and so on. It's also got raw water pumping in there, so there's lots of phytoplankton."

In natural habitat, pipefish live in shallow water among eelgrass, algae, and other types of vegetation in estuaries and bays.

Boothe said they're expecting even more babies. With the eggs of as many as three females involved, it could mean there are dozens more waiting to be born, all inside the male in various stages of gestation.

"Spawning for pipefish begins in May when the female pipefish passes her eggs to the male," Boothe said. "The courtship between the male and female tends to be an elaborately choreographed display, where female and male entangle themselves around each other over and over again. They look as if they are dancing. The male may receive eggs from two to three different females and can carry up to 225 eggs."

COMMENT: I have kept Pipefish, however I have never bred them (I have bred their cousins the seahorse). These are interesting although delicate fish to keep in an aquarium. I only recommend them in a non-competitive reef or nano-reef aquarium as most fish will out compete them for food and make them nervous. I have generally fed Brine Shrimp and Mysis Shrimp and have also kept them in tanks with a lot of hiding places including live rock and caulerpa algae.
"Marine Aquarium Basics" can provide more information and links to keeping these and other marine/saltwater fish.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Rare Ratfish, Oregon

Rare Ratfish found on Oregon Shores dies -

Associated Press and Staff

SEASIDE, Ore. - A rare fish from the deep that had the Seaside Aquarium buzzing today has died.

The ratfish, described as both cute and bizarre, and usually lives too deep in the ocean to show up on land.

But a group of kids from Oregon City brought in a three-foot-long Spotted Ratfish over the weekend. They had found it on the southern cove area of Seaside -- still alive.

Aquarium spokeswoman Tiffany Boothe says the spotted ratfish's technical name is 'Hydrolagus colliei,' and is named ratfish for its rat-like appearance.

Scientists were not sure if the fish would survive the night. It had a sore on it's right fin that was making life difficult. Boothe said "at one point, it got stuck upside down and couldn't right itself."

On Monday Boothe said the fish didn't make it through the night. She said "the fact that he was already washed up on shore was not a good sign to begin with."

The aquarium was keeping the fish in a freezer in case a local school wanted to disect it to try and figure out how it died.

The ratfish exists between southeast Alaska and Baha, California. But sometimes it is found in shallower waters off the Oregon coast.

The aquarium says sometimes fishermen bring the ratfish when they accidentally catch them. But Boothe says it's really very rare they wash up on the beach.

aquarium information, help, advice, articles

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Pet Food Recall Ingredient Found In Fish Feed

Pet Food Recall Ingredient Found In Fish Feed - SALEM, Ore. -- The Food and Drug Administration has confirmed that a chemical that caused thousands of pets to become sick has been found in fish feed in Oregon.

Melamine was found in fish feed at the Marion Forks Hatchery in Idanha, according to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The feed is used as a starter diet for juvenile salmon and trout, the ODFW said. The distributors of the feed had also sent it to the Willamette, Gnat Creek, Big Creek, Cole Rivers, Butte Falls and Leaburg hatcheries, according to the ODFW.

For the full article, please click above.

aquarium information, help, advice, articles

Melamine is an organic base with the chemical formula C3H6N6. Melamine in wheat gluten added to mass-produced dog and cat foods has been associated with renal failure, which could be explained by the ammonia that may result from the digestion of the melamine.
The addition of "melamine scrap" into fish and livestock feed to give the false appearance of a higher level of protein (which is due to the urea contained there in), was an "open secret" in many parts of China, reporting that this melamine scrap was being produced at at least one plant processing coal into melamine.

Most fish foods do not use much Wheat Gluten and obtain their Gluten from within the USA. The amounts of potential contamination of most foods is low as the better fish foods have Wheat Gluten very low on their list of ingredients (unlike many pet foods), that even with contamination, the risks are very low. In fact the main food I feed is Spirulina 20 which has a small amount of Wheat Gluten and I have a VERY healthy tank(s).

I recommend reading this article about fish nutrition and being more concerned with the VERY poor quality of ingredients that go into many of the popular fish foods such as TetraMin rather than the Melamine scare: Quality Fish Food (Proper Aquatic Nutrition); What ingredients are needed for proper fish nutrition, growth and health.


Monday, April 16, 2007

Steelhead will test the waters

Steelhead will test the waters -A half century after the dams, a reintroduction comes to fruition
By Kate Ramsayer / The Bulletin
Published: April 14. 2007 5:00AM PST

The pioneers now lie in trays in a hatchery north of Maupin, little more than a big eye and a yolk. But in a few weeks, once these summer steelhead eggs have hatched into tiny fry and used up the energy from the yolk, they'll be trucked to Whychus Creek downstream of Sisters and released. As they settle into the slow-moving side channels and backwaters of the creek, they will be the first steelhead to swim above Lake Billy Chinook since the Pelton Round Butte dam complex was constructed about half a century ago.

And they'll be the first test of whether more than a decade of planning by numerous agencies will enable ocean-going fish to migrate from and return to the Upper Deschutes Basin.

"We're certainly really, really excited about the reintroduction on all fronts," said Steven Marx, interim Deschutes District watershed manager with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

"The big thing is it's been 50 years since waters upstream from Pelton Dam have seen summer steelhead."

aquarium information, help, advice, articles

For the full article, please click above.

Comment: this an interesting article, well worth reading in its entirety.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Trout in the classroom

2 the Outdoors: Trout in the classroom -WASHINGTON COUNTY, Ore. - Recently, a special delivery was made to Banks Elementary School in Washington County. Leroy Schultz paid a visit to the school to deliver a 28-gallon aquarium.

Schultz is part of a volunteer army that delivers this unique equipment that enables youngsters to learn about their environment.

The large tank will soon be a new home for 600 trout eggs in a second-grade classroom at the school.

The fish eggs are donated to the "Trout in the Classroom" program by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. The eggs come from the Roaring River Hatchery in Linn County.

The hatchery produces 70 percent of Oregon's rainbow trout. Huge female trout are live-spawned and their surplus eggs are donated to the Northwest Steelheaders for the classroom program.

In addition to the donations of tanks, which are worth $1,000 each, volunteers from the Steelheaders gather in February to collect the many packets of 600 eggs. Each volunteer delivers the trout eggs to a different classroom.

According to NWS member Ben Rand, the project spreads an important message: "What it takes to raise fish, how we should appreciate the fish. Hopefully, a little bit of (an) ecology lesson too. I am sure the youngsters are excited about raising fish."

Schultz made his delivery to Chris McOmie's second-grade classroom at the Banks school. Her students were very excited about the prospect of raising fish.

aquarium information, help, advice, articles

For the full article (including a video), please click above.

Comments: Not much more to say than cool story and idea!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Longevity of your Pet

The Longevity of your Pet Could be Affected by its Diet More than any Other Factor -What are we really feeding our pets? What pet manufacturers don't want us to know.

Kansas City, MO (PRWeb) February 23, 2007-- Don't be fooled by those slick ads on TV run by the major brands of your favorite dog and cat foods says entrepreneur/direct marketer John Karstetter. You've heard the expression, "You are what you eat?" It is especially true for pets. Like humans, pets may also be lacking in a daily nutritious, antioxidant and digestible diet.

Most pet foods sold today contain the 5 D's… dead, diseased, dying, disabled and drugged animals. Also included in the ingredients labeled as byproducts are animal intestines and brains, chicken heads, duck bills, fish heads, chicken and turkey feet, hides, feathers, hair, bones, dead animals that may have been treated with antibiotics or hormones, beef tallow or animal fat (lard), animal digest and "road kill".

For the full article, please click above.

proper fish food, nutrition


Not really an aquarium or pond story, however I have been to many dog and cat food nutrition seminars when I was more involved in the Dog and Cat aspect of the Pet industry and I have to concur.

I also would like to note that this is also a common problem in most fish diets as many aquarist unknowingly throw trash foods such as TetraMin or BettaMin down their fish throats and then wonder why they have sick fish (such as the disease Dropsy) or their aquarium gets cloudy.

For more information about fish nurtrition, please visit this article:
Quality Fish Food; What ingredients are needed for proper fish nutrition, growth and health.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Central Point might give exotic pets the boot

Central Point might give exotic pets the boot -An ordinance banning nontraditional critters in the city is under discussion tonight at 7

By buffy pollock
for the Mail Tribune

CENTRAL POINT — Exotic pets ranging from wolves to raccoons to large snakes could be banned in town under a new ordinance before the City Council.

The council will consider the animal ordinance at 7 tonight in City Hall, 140 S. Third St., Central Point.

The proposed law would allow existing pets to be grandfathered in if they are registered with city code enforcement officials by March 12.

The current policy on keeping pets came under scrutiny after neighbors of Blue Grass Downs homeowner Nick Kessler complained about Kessler's pet bobcat, Kona. The Kessler family moved into the subdivision — across from a city park — last summer.

For the full article, please click above.


Not really an aquarium or pond story, but considering snakes are being considered, many fish can be thrown into this ban as well. Not that we don not need boundaries on which pets we can keep and not keep, it is possible as in some local and state governments to go too far, especially when bad information is used such as California’s statement that Piranha would populate the water ways (which is not true even for Piranha, as this fish will die off in water below 60-65 F, which there in not a body off water even in LA that does not get this cold in the winter.

BASIC AQUARIUM PRINCIPLES; Information for the proper set up, maintenance, care and feeding for freshwater aquariums

For a great Aquatics Forum where Everything Aquatic is discussed:

Monday, January 22, 2007

'Marine Ecology for the Wet and Wild' offered at Oregon Coast Aquarium

'Marine Ecology for the Wet and Wild' offered at Oregon Coast Aquarium -The Oregon Coast Aquarium is offering a rare opportunity for intermediate SCUBA divers. "Marine Ecology for the Wet and Wild," is an extraordinary experience for divers who will go into the waters of the aquarium's "Passages of the Deep" exhibit, home to hundreds of marine animals. The class is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 10, and includes a review of the 13 major groups of invertebrates inhabiting Northwest waters.

Vallorie Hodges, dive safety officer at the Oregon Coast Aquarium, described what students in the class will experience, "We'll be right up close to many common - and some uncommon Pacific Northwest fishes and invertebrates. This is an ideal place for divers to learn about marine life because you would have to log many hours diving in the open water of the Oregon coast to find and identify the marine life you will see in one dive at the aquarium."

In this setting at the aquarium, divers learn in more focused manner. "You see the animals through the acrylic, learn about them in a classroom and then dive into Passages of the Deep at the Aquarium," Hodges says. "You really get to see them up close and walk away with a solid knowledge of what you see in Pacific Northwest waters."

For the full article, please click above.

This is a cool place to visit, anyone who loves fish keeping or the ocean should make this a must see if traveling the Oregon Coast!


For a great Aquatics Forum where Everything Aquatic is discussed: