Welcome to Saltwater Aquarium Blog, your online guide to building a better saltwater aquarium. Since 2009, I’ve connected with nearly 1 million readers around the world, and I’m glad for the opportunity to connect with you!

saltwater aquarium

The best way to connect with me is by joining the thousands of others in the Saltwater Aquarium Blog Newsletter Community. When you join, I’ll send you a Free E-book and a weekly email newsletter to help you:

  • Enjoy your reef tank more
  • Fight aquarium problems
  • Buy the right equipment and gear
  • Avoid common mistakes
  • Reduce the hassles of maintenance

You can also find a lot of helpful advice about building a better saltwater aquarium here on this site. Let me share with you how.

Saltwater aquarium blog build a better saltwater aquarium

Freshest information from Saltwater Aquarium Blog

If you are looking for the freshest information at Saltwater Aquarium Blog, check out the “Articles” tab at the top. The newest articles will automatically scroll to the top. As you go deeper into those archives, you time travel backward. This is a fine way to explore and discover helpful tips, tricks, and advice, but it isn’t focused or organized in any specific way.

Feel free to check out the most recent articles and work your way backward.

Search Saltwater Aquarium Blog for specific content

If you’re looking for a specific topic and know what you want to find, consider using the search function to find specific Saltwater Aquarium Blog content. If you are reading this on a desktop computer, the search function should be near the top right part of the page in the margin. If you are on a mobile device, there will be no margin, so the search bar slides down to the bottom by clicking the magnifying glass at the top right of the page.

clownfish coral on saltwater aquarium blog homepage

Explore the most popular categories

There have been a lot of posts, since 2009, across a range of topics within the saltwater aquarium hobby. The most popular articles tend to belong to a few specific categories. If you want to browse them to look for a few articles of interest, I recommend you check these out first:

  1. Saltwater aquarium fish
  2. Corals
  3. Aquarium product reviews


saltwater aquarium setup

The most useful pages on Saltwater Aquarium Blog

Another way to dive into the content would be to check out the posts that are most visited by other aquarium owners (or soon-to-be-owners) like you.

These are the most useful pages:

What it takes to be successful in the saltwater aquarium hobby

If you want to be successful in the saltwater aquarium hobby, it takes some patience, planning, perseverance, and a desire to learn about and care about some of the world’s most beautiful, and often fragile creatures.

When I set up my first tank, I thought I knew what I was doing, because I had freshwater tanks. The reality is that some of the info about the reef hobby was a bit confusing and sometimes inaccurate.

Saltwater aquarium featuring zoanthid corals in the front and a large polyp stony coral in the back

Along the way, I’ve continued my learning (either through reading, talking with others in the hobby, or messing things up pretty badly myself).

There are plenty of people out there who know a lot more about the saltwater aquarium hobby than I do–but I started writing Saltwater Aquarium Blog for those of you who are like me when I started out.

You want to learn, plan and be successful–but just need to be pointed in the right direction.

Success in this hobby is all about creating a stable environment for the animals in your tank.

In order to do that, you need some knowledge of the basics, some time, equipment, patience, and persistence. You have to understand what the needs are for the animals in your tank (sometimes called husbandry requirements), and you have to provide that for them–almost every hour of every day.

The way you do that is by maintaining near-perfect water conditions with the right equipment and maintenance. When you stray from those ideal water conditions, your risk of having problems goes up. Don’t let that scare you though–because there are lots of tools to help you, on various articles throughout the Saltwater Aquarium Blog.

building a better saltwater aquarium

Why keep a saltwater aquarium?

Setting up and maintaining a healthy saltwater aquarium can be a relaxing and rewarding hobby. Studies have shown that watching fish in an aquarium can have a calming effect that lowers your pulse rate and blood pressure.

The saltwater aquarium hobby is one part of creative expression, one part gardening (underwater gardening) and one part pet ownership. You get to watch the animals grow and adapt to the environment you created for them and provide for them. It’s a pretty cool thing. Hopefully, the content here on Saltwater Aquarium Blog will help.

Does a saltwater aquarium have to be big?

When the saltwater aquarium hobby first hit the scene, a lot of people thought that you had to have a big tank in order to be successful.

Over the years, the equipment used to keep a saltwater aquarium has gotten better, as the processes for transporting fish and invertebrates have gotten better…so now you can be successful with just about any size aquarium you would want.

Now, size is a trade-off decision, not a requirement. Check out my review of some of the most popular rimless nano tanks for a few ideas on how to start small.

maroon clownfish and bubble tip anemone in a reef tank

Does a saltwater aquarium have to be expensive?

Owning a saltwater aquarium can be expensive. Many people choose to spend a lot of money on the equipment and livestock in their tanks, but a saltwater aquarium doesn’t have to be expensive. I recommend you start off small, try it out, and see how much you enjoy the hobby before you get into the expansive side of things.

You’ll find lots of ways to spend money on this hobby, but there are also lots of articles here on Saltwater Aquarium Blog that can save you both time and money.

Where can you buy a saltwater tank?

Used equipment

Believe it or not, one of the best places to buy a saltwater aquarium is from another saltwater aquarium hobbyist. For better or worse, there are two prominent trends in this hobby.

This is a hobby where the most enthusiastic people are generally changing, upgrading or swapping out parts of their tanks…so at any given time, there is usually a decent supply of gently used tanks and gear.

Empty aquarium or fish tankYou can usually stretch your budget and get more for your money if you buy used. It’s also a good way to tap into the knowledge of others and get started on the right foot.

Check out Craigslist and local saltwater aquarium hobby forums for used gear.


If you’re looking for a store with a physical location, your best bet is to look for a specialty (generally independently owned) shop. In the hobby, we like to call these local fish stores (LFS).

The reason I recommend these stores over the big box national retail chains is that the local fish stores are generally run by aquarium enthusiasts who have a passion for and knowledge about the hobby.

Aquarium equipment, fish, and corals are not commodity products, they require a certain amount of tender loving care and knowledge that, in my personal experience, is more commonly found in the local fish store than in the megastores.

It might cost you a little bit more, but it’s generally worthwhile to get the additional education and support your LFS can provide.

saltwater aquarium with fish corals and invertebrates


If you already have a good degree of comfort with understanding what it takes to set up a saltwater aquarium successfully, another great place to buy a saltwater aquarium is online. The all-in-one aquarium systems are turnkey solutions that are easy to ship and set up right out of the box.

If you’re looking to score a good deal, check out the options available at online retailers like Amazon.com, where you can often get some of the best prices on JBJ or Coralife brand cubes (Affiliate links). They make great starter saltwater aquariums.

Looking for more formal education in addition to what’s here on Saltwater Aquarium Blog?

If you are serious about increasing your learning and want a more formal and organized way to engage in all there is to learn about building a better saltwater aquarium, the best place to start after reading all the free information on Saltwater Aquarium Blog is to check out this Amazon #1 Bestselling book:

The New Saltwater Aquarium Guide   Book written by saltwater aquarium blog authorBuy now on Amazon.com

Thank you for reading Saltwater Aquarium Blog

Thanks for checking out Saltwater Aquarium Blog, your online guide to building a better saltwater aquarium. We all have limited time to surf the web and consume content and I’m truly grateful that you are spending some of that time here with me and my writing.

Albert B. Ulrich III author of Saltwater Aquarium Blog

Saltwater Aquarium Blog author in the shark tunnel at Ripley’s Aquarium in Gatlinburg, TN–my favorite Aquarium

I hope you enjoy the time you spend here and learn something along the way. That’s what Saltwater Aquarium Blog is all about.

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