12 Popular Types Of Fish Tanks You Should Know

types of fish tanks

There are many different types of fish tanks, with each one offering something slightly different to the fish owner in terms of water quality, temperature, and space to swim around in. The three most common types are freshwater tanks, saltwater tanks, and brackish water tanks. Each has its own pros and cons that should be thoroughly researched before choosing which types of fish tanks will work best for your needs.

The fish tank has become an increasingly popular way to create living art within one’s home or office space. It can be as complex or simple as you want it to be, with many different options available to you. In order to help you choose the best types of fish tanks for your needs, we have compiled 12 popular types and how they can help you achieve your fish-keeping goals.

Popular types of fish tanks

types of fish tanks

Coldwater freshwater tank

Coldwater fish tanks are a great option for people who want to keep their tank at room temperature. One of the benefits of this type of tank is that it can be more affordable than other types, and you don’t have to worry about adjusting the water’s temperature.

However, one drawback is that some species need warmer water in order to thrive. In addition, coldwater tanks typically have less surface area than other types of tanks which can make it difficult for aeration.

Lastly, these tanks require good filtration systems because they are susceptible to high levels of ammonia. If you’re interested in this type of tank, try out things like live plants or pebbles on the bottom.

Coldwater marine tank

A coldwater marine tank is a freshwater fish tank that contains salt water. The salt content in the water is less than what is typically found in regular marine tanks and the temperature of the water is often higher. This type of tank mimics life in an ocean environment because salt levels are closer to what you would find at sea level.

Temperature allows for more tropical fish to be kept, as well as invertebrates like snails, crabs, shrimp, and anemones. Coral reefs can also be established within these types of tanks. Coldwater marine setups should include all equipment needed to run such a setup, including live rock and sand substrates, along with a filter and heater.

Tropical freshwater tank

types of fish tanks

A tropical freshwater tank is a place where you can create a unique and beautiful environment for your fish. With the right setup, you can give your fish a lush green environment that they will love to swim in. Freshwater tanks are often more affordable than saltwater tanks and easier to maintain because they don’t require specific equipment as saltwater tanks do.

2 Gallon Fish Tanks: Everything You Need To Know

Some freshwater tanks come with their own filters built-in, so all you need to worry about is setting up your plants and rocks. It also doesn’t require a lot of upkeep which means less time wasted cleaning up algae or getting rid of excess nitrates. All you need for this type of aquarium is a filter, heater (if necessary), gravel or sand, plants, and rocks.

Tropical marine tank


A tropical marine tank is designed to imitate the natural environment of tropical marine fish, it typically has a great variety of live rock, corals, and invertebrates. In order to maintain the desired temperature and pH level in this type of tank, an under-gravel filter may be used.

The under-gravel filter allows for an increase in surface area which provides more aeration and a stronger current. An under-gravel filter can also help remove waste from the substrate. However, these filters have been known to clog with time, and overfeeding by your fish or corals can lead to a failure of the system.

The tropical marine tank is one of the most popular tanks because they have a lot of room for live rock, corals, and invertebrates. They are also more likely to be kept at a higher temperature than other tanks. The downside is that they can be more costly to set up and maintain. An aquarium with fresh water, salt water, or both: These aquariums often house freshwater fish as well as saltwater fish.

Brackish tank

A brackish tank is for saltwater and freshwater fish to live. The water in the tank is a mixture of saltwater (or pure ocean water) and fresh water. Brackish tanks are not suited for beginners but can be beneficial if you have a lot of experience with marine environments. It may also be more useful than a freshwater tank when breeding certain types of fish.

Brackish aquariums will typically need an additional filtration system that removes ammonia from the water because it’s much higher than what is found in freshwater aquariums.

It’s important to note that mixing salt water with fresh water will result in chemical reactions and make it difficult to maintain a steady pH balance.

Reef tanks

A reef tank is a saltwater aquarium that houses invertebrate animals and plants. A typical setup includes a fish tank, live coral, and various types of live rock. Live corals are the main attraction to these tanks because they provide a colorful background as well as an opportunity for other marine life to thrive. Corals typically come in red, green, brown, and yellow colors.

The 15 Best Aquariums In the US You Should Visit

Live rock is used to create an environment with living organisms such as algae and bacteria which provide food for the inhabitants. The fish tank contains water which can be fresh or salty depending on your preference.

When it comes to choosing fish for this type of aquarium, you’ll need something small enough to fit into small crevices among the rocks and corals. Other popular creatures found in these types of tanks include crabs, sea stars, urchins, hermit crabs, and shrimp.

Breeder tanks

Live-bearing or offspring-bearing fish flourish in these types of aquariums. Keeping breeder tanks clean requires regular water changes, as they usually lack filtration.
This aquarium is good for large fish, since they require a large amount of space. There are two types of breeder tanks: glass and acrylic.

While acrylic is less expensive, it is heavier and easier to maintain, while glass is more attractive and allows you to observe your fish while they spawn.

In addition to the unique lighting requirements, this type of tank can also be very expensive to maintain. Make sure your breeder tank can hold at least 10 gallons per inch of fish if you plan on keeping cichlids, goldfish, or discus (for example, 10 goldfish would require 100 gallons).

Substrate-based fish tanks

Substrate-based fish tanks are a type of aquarium in which the floor of the tank is covered with sand, gravel, or other material, leaving only small spaces for water to flow. This type of tank is common among marine tanks.

The substrate helps keep the water clean by absorbing waste and impurities that are excreted by fish and plants. Substrate-based tanks also have a higher humidity level than other types of aquariums, which can help prevent dryness in some plants.

However, this type of tank may be difficult to maintain because the surfaces are often not designed to trap loose debris. Also, it’s important not to use any sharp objects when cleaning because they can damage your substrate’s surface area.

Sump-based fish tanks

A sump is a container placed under your main aquarium where you filter out debris and excess water before it enters the main body of water. One advantage to a sump system is that it provides more space at the bottom of your aquarium, which means more room for decorations.

50 Gallon Fish Tank: What You Must Know!

A disadvantage of this type of system is its complexity. Depending on how much filtration you need, you may need multiple pumps and other equipment – as well as an expert technician to help set up and maintain everything properly.

Small biotope fish tanks

A small biotope fish tank is a miniature ecosystem that replicates the natural environment of freshwater or saltwater fish. These tanks are often less than ten gallons in size and contain gravel and plants to recreate an aquatic environment. Small biotope tanks are perfect for apartment dwellers, because they require minimal maintenance and can be tucked away easily when not in use.

They also make great gifts for someone who has everything! If you’re lucky enough to have a room dedicated to your aquariums (which I’m assuming most of us don’t), then this might be the way to go. On the other hand, if space is limited, I would recommend going with one of the other types of tanks listed below.

Most small biotope tanks come equipped with fluorescent lights and heaters that create conditions just like those found in nature.

Large tropical public fish tanks

A public fish tank is a large aquarium that people can visit to see aquatic life from around the world. The tanks are often open to the public and are usually connected with an exhibit or museum. Public tanks offer insight into different ecosystems and how they work, as well as increase awareness about marine life.

One popular type of public aquarium is a tropical aquarium, which houses mostly saltwater fish that live in warm ocean waters. These tanks are filled with coral reefs, brightly colored invertebrates, and other sea creatures found in warmer climates.

These types of tanks provide a glimpse at what most people don’t have access to: huge bodies of water teeming with life. In contrast, many public tanks house cold water fish such as those found in polar regions or deep-sea environments.

Ocean bio parks and marine life sanctuaries

Marine life sanctuaries and ocean bio parks are a great way to experience marine life without getting up close. These types of attractions are typically much safer for the animals and visitors because they don’t expose the fish to any toxins or harsh chemicals. They also allow you to see many different varieties of fish, as opposed to just one type at a local pet store.

The Top 15 Largest Aquariums in the US

Additionally, these facilities will offer educational opportunities and teach people about how to care for their own pets. Additionally, these facilities will offer educational opportunities and teach people about how to care for their own pets.

5 common types of fish tanks requirements

types of fish tanks

Different types of fish tanks require different requirements. Almost all fish tanks have the same requirements, but there are some that are specific to each type. There are five common requirements for all types of fish tanks: lighting, filtration, heaters/heating equipment, water pumps, and water conditioners.

Due to the popularity of aquariums and ponds among amateurs, we will focus on these options. It is worthwhile to note, however, that many other types of fish tanks do not require any of these items (for example, a bowl), at present.


First, there must be light. Plants use light in narrow bands to make photosynthetic energy, which comes either from natural sunlight or artificial sources.


Secondly, there needs to be a filter in any fish tank. An aquarium filter keeps your water clean while removing waste. Depending on the size of your aquarium and your needs, filters can be powered mechanically or biologically.

Heaters/heating equipment

A heating unit is the third requirement. For your fish to remain healthy, aquarium temperatures must be kept at an appropriate level. In order to maintain the right temperature in your tank, you should always use a heater in combination with a thermometer.

Water pumps

A water pump is the fourth requirement. The pumps in some fish tanks circulate the water supply back into the aquariums by circulating it through filters. Furthermore, pumps enhance the oxygenation of your water, which is necessary to support plant growth.

Additionally, substrate, decorations, and plants are often required for fish tanks in order to create a more visually appealing atmosphere.

Water conditioners

A water conditioner is the last requirement. By treating tap water with a water conditioner you can alleviate stress on fish and even kill them over time due to chlorine, chloramine, and heavy metals.