Fish live in various environments all over the world, such as oceans, rivers, lakes, and ponds. These different bodies of water have one big thing in common: they all have large surface areas and a strong current that will keep the water moving. Water movement helps oxygenate the water. In aquariums, the surface area is vastly decreased. There are artificial ways to oxygenate the water that must be done. This is called aeration.
Before going over the different ways one could aerate the water, it is crucial to know how much surface area your water is. The greater the surface area, the more water is in contact with the air at any time. This will lead to more excellent oxygen absorption by the water. Due to this, you must maximize the surface area in your aquarium.
When your fish breathe, they absorb oxygen from the tank water, and they will convert it into carbon dioxide. Oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged at the water’s surface. Carbon dioxide is released from the water and into the air. This process is fundamental because your fish would die if carbon dioxide were never released into the air. Carbon dioxide would build up inside the tank and slowly suffocate the fish.
While carbon dioxide is being released into the air, oxygen is being absorbed into the water from the air. This is important because it provides oxygen for your fish to breathe. For this exchange to happen, the surface tension of the water must be broken. This will allow the carbon dioxide particles to be released and the oxygen to be absorbed.
Also, as the temperature of your aquarium increases, the oxygen levels decrease. This is because the evaporation rate of the tank water will be higher. Consequently, the higher the temperature of your tank, the more you need to be aware of whether or not your fish are getting the oxygen they need. As soon as you get above 80 degrees Fahrenheit, aeration will be necessary.
How to Aerate your Aquarium Water?
There are several ways to aerate your tank. Here are a few ways:
Use a Good Filter
Something as simple as a hang-on back filter could successfully aerate your tank for many aquariums. Therefore, it could provide adequate surface agitation. The surface agitation will increase the surface area in contact with the atmosphere. This will help increase oxygen absorption.
Also, the filter will circulate the water in your aquarium. This is important because it will move the water from the bottom of the tank to its top.
This will increase its oxygen concentration. Using filters will help improve aeration and circulation and rotate the tank water. However, it could cause dead spots depending on the placement of the filter.
The clearer your filter, the more water it can handle, and the greater will be the oxygenation and aeration of your Fish Tank.
If your filter is not providing enough circulation, a powerhead may be helpful to you. A powerhead siphons the water up out of the tank and mixes it with air.
Most powerheads give you the option to adjust how much air they intake. This allows you to change how many bubbles are being produced. In addition, powerheads can help get rid of dead spots in your aquarium.
Dead spots are an area in your tank where circulation tends to be below. If correctly placed in your tank, the powerhead could help make the circulation in the dead spots better. Powerheads are a preferred method for larger tanks.
However, there are powerheads explicitly made for smaller tanks, so be sure to purchase the correct one for your tank.
Powerheads are a great source of aeration and could help get rid of dead spots.
An air stone is a porous stone connected to an air pump. This helps produce bubbles in an aquarium. Some may feel like this is too loud, so they decide not to try air stones. If you place the pump on a sponge, it will significantly lower the noise.
The bubbles are not what creates the aeration in the tank. Instead, the bubbles cause a disturbance in the surface and create more water circulation.
The circulation will help increase oxygen levels in the tank. Air stones can be installed in any tank. They have an adjustable flow rate, which could be ideal for any tank size.
Air stones help increase surface agitation and will create more circulation.
Aerating ornaments are similar to air stones. They do the same thing air stones do; they look more relaxed. Aerating ornaments can look like a pirate ship.
They can enhance the appearance of your aquarium. They will increase aeration in your tank. However, they will also take away the natural look of the tank if that is what you prefer.
Keep Many Plants
Adding plants to your tank can help increase circulation in your tank. However, make sure that the plants are not placed where they can be uprooted by the other aeration devices you use.
Plants require carbon dioxide, which the fish release. The fish need oxygen, which plants create. Having plants in your fish tank is the perfect combination.
Plants use photosynthesis to live; they convert CO2 into oxygen via this process. As a result, the more plants you have in the water, the more oxygen is produced.
When the lights are turned off, plants do the opposite of photosynthesis.
If you leave your aquarium lights off for too long, it can affect the amount of oxygenation and aeration in your tank.
How to tell if your fish are not getting enough oxygen?
It can be pretty tricky to tell if your fish are getting enough oxygen or not. The fish may not show symptoms of it right away.
The most obvious sign that your fish isn’t getting enough water is if you see them at the water’s surface, gasping for air.
The fish will also tend to hang out by the filter often. This is because the area by the filter has the highest level of oxygen concentration.
If you notice your fish doing any of these signs, you must begin trying some of the options mentioned above.
Aeration is one of the essential factors in keeping the fish in your tank healthy. Properly aerating your tank ensures that your fish will get enough oxygen and breathe correctly.
The most common devices used to increase aeration in aquariums are filters, air stones, powerheads, and aerating decorations. Research them all and find which ones work best for you.