The simple answer to which one is better for you is that it is a personal decision that every aquarist must make for themselves at one point or another. The deciding factor for many is simply a combination of budget and their own leanings toward what should and should not be in the tank.
Fresh water fish come from any source of clean water. This can include rivers, lakes, and streams. These kinds of fish acclimate themselves easily to new surroundings. This is due to fluctuations that generally exist in their natural habitat. They are more likely to easily integrate themselves into the tank you put them in. It is also easy to find plant life that will thrive alongside them in fresh water.
On the other hand, saltwater tanks pose a challenge in this area. Saltwater fish and invertebrates are sensitive to changes in their surroundings. They require a very specific sort of environment and everything must be kept at appropriate levels for them. This includes such things as the temperature, salinity, ammonia, nitrate, and the pH.
Although saltwater fish require this extra care and do normally come at a higher price, the sheer multitude of exquisite specimens in this category makes many fall in love with them. Not to mention the other interesting creatures such as clams, eels, and even starfish. You will rarely see such a gorgeous array of color as when you look into a saltwater tank.
The difference between saltwater and freshwater aquariums aren’t only in the fish that reside in them. The accessories required to keep your pets alive differs also. Freshwater tanks tend to cost significantly less money to set up. While this is a general rule, the expense of the saltwater aquarium does vary depending on exactly what you want in there.
For example, most will tell you that saltwater fish will be at their happiest and look the most beautiful in a setting which includes reef and live rock. This will cost much more than just putting down some gravel. But it all depends on what effect you have your heart set on.
Lighting is another consideration. It will be a necessary addition to any tank, but for the saltwater variety, you will once again be paying a higher price for it. The extent of this depends on what inhabitants you have chosen. If your tank only contains fish, you can get away with a single, full spectrum tube. But if you just have to have that starfish in there, or any other invertebrates, you will have to put intense full spectrum lighting in, augmented with actinic blue.
You will have to make sure that the water is at a certain temperature and is properly filtered in either case, but full reef systems need a little extra love. This comes in the form of added filtration via protein skimming.
Also in both varieties, you will have to keep the water in the tank moving. Stagnant water is universally bad, for people and fish. But our friends in the saltwater aquarium will be particularly sensitive to this.
The list of things that you must pay special attention to does go on, but by now I’m guessing that you are beginning to see a trend in the differences between the two aquariums. Either one will demand an investment of your time and money. Ultimately, how much of either you are willing to devote to your hobby will guide you in your decision.
About the Author
Sebastian Marders loves writing about a variety of things and sharing the website that inspires each piece with his readers. If you are interested in fish tank decorations, including aquarium castles, and aquarium plastic plants then please visit.