Consider us your new best friend in the aquarium hobby


A  live stream on YouTube each Wednesday (audio and visual) week, and the release audio only on Spotify on the Sunday.

Is light-hearted fun, information, and different views on all things aquarium and tropical fish tank-related

Tips and tricks that we have learned over the years of keeping tropical fish.


Aquarium Bibliography


An aquarium is a transparent container designed to house and display various aquatic organisms, providing a glimpse into the underwater world. These are most commonly made from glass and glued together with aquarium safe silicone 

Aqua Soil

Aqua Soil is a type of substrate specifically designed for use in planted aquariums. It is a popular choice among aquarium hobbyists due to its beneficial properties for plant growth and water chemistry regulation.Aqua Soil is composed of a special blend of natural materials, such as volcanic soil, peat moss, and clay.


Baby brine shrimp are commonly used in aquariums as a nutritious live food source for small fish and other aquatic creatures, contributing to their growth and overall health. BBS are hatched from eggs in a salt brine mixture, and are normally feed to fry and smaller fish.

Beneficial Bacteria 

Beneficial bacteria in an aquarium play a crucial role in maintaining water quality by breaking down harmful waste substances and establishing a balanced ecosystem for the well-being of the aquatic inhabitants. Most of the beneficial bacteria is housed within the aquariums filter set up, but they can also grow on substrate, rocks, wood, decoration and more.

Canister Filter 

A canister filter is a type of aquarium filtration system that consists of a sealed canister filled with filter media, typically including mechanical, biological, and chemical filtration components, which effectively removes debris, impurities, and harmful substances from the water, ensuring a clean and healthy aquatic environment. They normally sit below or to the side of the aquarium, and are run by a power head which pumps the water into the filter and around the aquarium once it has been cleaned. 


Cycling an aquarium is the process of establishing a stable and healthy biological filter by allowing beneficial bacteria to colonize, which helps break down toxic ammonia and nitrite into less harmful nitrate, ensuring a safe environment for the aquatic inhabitants. This typically involves introducing a source of ammonia, monitoring water parameters, and patiently waiting for the bacteria to establish before adding fish or other animals to the tank.

Egg Layer 

Egg-laying freshwater tropical fish reproduce by laying eggs that are usually fertilized externally. These fish often exhibit parental care by constructing caves, pits, or nests as breeding sites to protect their eggs and fry, providing a safe and sheltered environment for successful reproduction. American cichlids both dwarfs and larger species and the most common egg-laying fish

Egg Scatterer 

Egg scatterer freshwater tropical fish reproduce by scattering their eggs freely in the water, without exhibiting parental care, relying on external factors such as vegetation or tank decor to provide hiding places for the eggs to increase the chances of survival. Most danios, tetras, barbs and rainbow fish fall into this category. 


 Epiphyte refers to a plant species that attaches or grows on the surface of wood, rocks, or other submerged surfaces within water bodies, obtaining its nutrients from the water column rather than from the substrate it attaches to. Examples of these plants are anubias and java ferns


Aquarium hardscape refers to the decorative elements and structures, such as rocks, driftwood, stones, or artificial ornaments, used to create an aesthetically pleasing and natural-looking environment within an aquarium, providing shelter, hiding spots, and visual interest for the aquatic inhabitants.

Hang on Back Filter (HOB)

A hang-on-back aquarium filter, also known as a HOB filter, is a type of filtration system commonly used in fish tanks and aquariums. It is designed to be mounted on the back of the tank, with the intake tube submerged in the water and the filter unit hanging over the edge of the tank. In recent times, this style of filter has gone out of fashion in New Zealand. 



A livebearer is a term used to describe a group of fish species that give birth to live, fully-formed fry rather than laying eggs. Livebearers are popular among aquarium hobbyists due to their fascinating reproductive behavior and the relative ease of breeding and raising their offspring. Some common examples of livebearer fish species include guppies, mollies, platies, and swordtails. These fish are known for their vibrant colors, active behavior, and ability to adapt to a wide range of aquarium conditions.

Local Fish Shop/Store (LFS) 

Refers to a physical retail store that specializes in selling fish, aquarium supplies, and related products to aquarium hobbyists. LFSs are not super common in New Zealand, where there is only around a dozen LFS. 

LFSs typically offer a wide variety of freshwater fish species,  along with a range of aquarium plants and snails. They will normally,  also provide a selection of aquarium equipment, such as filters, heaters, lighting systems, water conditioners, and fish food. Additionally, LFSs often offer advice, expertise, and guidance to customers regarding aquarium setup, maintenance, and fish care.

Many aquarium hobbyists enjoy visiting their local fish stores as it allows them to physically examine and select the fish and other items they wish to purchase. LFSs provide an opportunity for hobbyists to see the livestock firsthand, evaluate their health and condition, and receive personalized recommendations from knowledgeable staff members.

LFS are also a great place to meet other likeminded hobbyists who share a similar interest in fish.

Mouth Brooder 

A mouth brooder is a type of fish that exhibits a unique reproductive behavior known as mouthbrooding. Mouthbrooders, are species in which the female fish holds fertilized eggs or newly hatched fry in her mouth until they are ready to be released. This is a very common occurrence in Lake Malawi Cichlids.