Creating a Natural Aquarium by Peter Hiscock


This a informational and instructional book that is 141 pages long. I came across it looking up good aquarium books to read.
I rate it 5 out of 5. This is going to be long, so bear with it. (If you want to)

It starts out with a chapter called 'The path of a river'. This chapter is mostly about the different types of rivers, where they come from, and where they end. It also has a section about swamps.

Next is a chapter called 'Making a biotope aquarium'. This chapter is about equipment you need to use. This includes: aquarium, heater, lighting, and life support (filter). It also talks about which shape of aquarium is best. Their opinion is the rectangle; this is because the octagonal and hexagonal distort the of fish.

The next chapter is called 'Aquascaping'. It's about, well, aquascaping. It recommends different types of gravel for different types of biotopes. It suggests to use coarse gravel over sand for stream bed displays, medium gravel for many setups, and fine gravel for plants. They recommend sand as a foundation for heavy rocks. They say calcareous substrates should only be used in high pH environments. For planted aquariums they recommend using a nutrient-rich substrate sandwiched between sand and gravel. They also have a list of inert rocks for use in the aquarium: basalt, coal, flint, granite, lava, quartz, sandstone, slate. They say that fresh lava rock is poisonous and that it should not be used. They also have a list of rocks that should be used in the high pH aquarium: chalk, limestone, marble, and tufa. They tell you to use bogwood in almost all aquarium biotopes. They tell you that if it is sold dry, it must be soaked. They tell you not to use regular wood in the aquarium, because it will rot. They tell you to use silicone sealant on heavy objects to prevent them falling and cracking the glass. It says to use a regular black background to not ruin the effect by seeing something behind the aquarium. There's more stuff about rockwork and the placing of things and how it all blends together, but I won't get into that.

The first biotope they have is the Mountain Stream. For this they want you to use feisty, fast fish such as the Rosy Barb, Striped Barb, Two-spot Barb, zebra danio, White Cloud Mountain Minnow, Phoxinus Phoxinus (the minnow), and otocinclus.

Next is the Central American Stream. The fish for this are: guppies, platies, mollies, swordtails, piketop minnows, and pictus catfish.

Next is the Central American River. The fish for this aquarium are: Quetzal cichlid, Jack Dempsey, Nicaragua cichlid, jaguar cichlid, red devil, and the blue-flecked cichlid. Smaller fish for this habitat are: firemouth cichlid, convict cichlid, salvini, spilurum, and the rainbow cichlid. They recommend larger catfish such as pterygoplichthys species.

Next is the Australian River. Fish for this are all types of rainbowfish, desert gobies, gudgeons, mollies, guppies, rosy barbs, and mosquitofish.

Next is the European River. Fish for this are: the minnow, bitterling, weather loach, gudgeons, sticklebacks, sunfish, and goldfish.

The next one is the flooded forest. The fish for this are: cardinal tetras, black widow tetras, rummy-nose tetras, angelfish, discus, hatchetfish, and farlowella catfish.

Next is the Amazon Acid Pool. Fish for this are: Discus, angelfish, shoaling tetras, corydoras species, and hoplosternum species.

Next is the Southeast Asian Swamp. Fish are: pearl gouramis, blue gouramis, dwarf gouramis, rasboras, and kuhlI loaches. The only error in this book is that the authour believes that blue gouramis are a morph of the gold gourami. (what?)

Next is Lake Malawi. They only recommend mbunas for this type.

Next is the Darkened Cave; my favorite. The fish for this are: blind cave tetras, synbranchus infernalis, mollies, blind cave-walking catfish, and salamanders.

Next is the Brackish Estuary. Fish for this are: Mollies, pufferfish, scats, monos, archerfish, bumblebee gobies, mosquito fish, indian glassfish, shark catfish, orange chromide, and four-eyes.

Last is the Mangrove Swamp. Fish are: archerfish, four-eyes, mudskippers, and fiddler crabs.

That's all folks!
  • Moderator


Sounds like an interesting book.
Thanks for the write up!
  • Thread Starter


No problem (well not really) . Because it took a while. But, it was a good book, and I thought I'd share.
  • Moderator


Thanks for the great write up

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