Amazonas aquarium

The Amazonas Aquarium is becoming more and more popular. It has to be said that it is not the best choice for a beginner, but the colourful variety of species is a lot of fun with good care. Today we will show you how to set up the tank, which fish and plants to choose and what you should pay attention to when taking care of it. If you have any questions, just leave us a comment and we will answer them!

What is an Amazonas Aquarium?

An Amazon aquarium is also called an Amazon basin or aquarium biotope. Here the interior design of the aquarium and the choice of the inhabitants is adapted to the living conditions of the Amazon. In contrast to the Amazonas Aquarium, there are for example the Dutchman Aquarium and the Aquascape, where the origin of the creatures and plants is more in the background. With the Aquascape, the design is in the foreground, with the Dutchman Aquarium the primary focus is on lush planting.

As close as possible to nature

Hans / Pixabay

The Amazonas Aquarium is all about simulating the exact living conditions of the Amazon and thus creating an image of nature. Amazon enthusiasts are usually considered fanatics or purists, as they cannot bear the thought of unnecessary decoration getting into the tank. But also the thought of mixing plants and creatures from Africa, Asia and South America is horrible for a real Amazon basin fan. The Amazonas Aquarium is not about the wishes of the aquarium owner, but about the natural way of life of its inhabitants. Bright colours, lush planting and surreal design elements have no place here.

Basically, you recreate the underwater landscape of a certain area in the Amazon and only put those fish and plant species into the tank that would be found in nature here. But it’s not only about animals and plants, it’s also about simulating water values and ground conditions so perfectly that a natural underwater world is created. There are advocates of this with different degrees of intensity. The Amazon is very large and water, animals, plants and soil vary according to their location in the Amazon river system. One faction simply tries to bring animals and plants from the Amazon together, the harder fraction simulates a special area in the river system.

Criticism point naturalness

The point of criticism of this copy of nature is that the fish would never live in such a small space as the aquarium. A small section of the Amazon is rather boring from the point of view of the plants and the creatures. Those who adapt their tank 1:1 to it will not see much except the bottom, as even the schooling fishes cover long distances in the river. The planting is divided into several kilometers. Therefore, it is also not a real copy of the natural habitat, as one somehow wants to create a colourful Amazonas aquarium. Nevertheless it is much more natural than the general aquarium.

Furnishing Amazonas Aquarium

Even if you focus on the Amazon when you set up your home, the possibilities and choice of creatures are incredibly diverse. No wonder, since the Amazon is between 6400 and 6992 kilometers long. It reaches from the tropical rainforest to the Atlantic Ocean.

Amazonas Aquarium Ground

Anyone who has hoped that the question of the substrate can be satisfied with a simple answer is unfortunately mistaken. If you take a closer look at the Amazon, you will notice that there is a variety of substrate types in different colours. Here you have to look which river basin you want to copy. An example of a black water river can be found below. Here you work with fine dark gravel and a layer of leaves. Furthermore the typical roots must not be missing. Otherwise the following forms of bottom ground can occur:

  • dark mud
  • Stone Slabs
  • Foliage
  • red soil
  • dark floor
  • light sand
]The list could go much further, at this point you should remember that the river system is bigger than Europe. So it’s no wonder that you can find different bottom ground here. The water types in the Amazon are divided into white water, black water and clear water.

Amazonas Aquarium Plants

To give a small insight into water plants from the Amazon, we have compiled a table. Here you can see the planting position, the scientific and the German name. If we have forgotten a plant or you have questions, just write it down in the comment field below. The Amazonas plants like it warm with an average of about 25° C. You can plant them already in small tanks, but of course a larger aquarium offers much more design possibilities. In the Amazon the water quality is not the same everywhere, therefore the different plants have different requirements. All plants listed, with the exception of the giant water lily, are also suitable for the aquarium. We only list plants from South America here. Some aquarists sometimes also include plants from North America, which again distorts the natural habitat. By the way, there are also Amazonas tanks which do not need any plants at all. Here one usually chooses numerous roots.

Amazon fish list

Restricting fish to the Amazon sounds like a difficult task at first, but if you take a closer look at the subject, you will notice that there are over 1500 known fish species in the Amazon and new ones are regularly discovered. The main ones to choose from are:

  • Perch-like - Perciformes
  • Tetras - Characiformes
  • Catfish - Siluriformes
  • Bone Tongue - Osteoglossiformes
  • Pufferfish relatives - Tetraodontiformes
  • Rays - Rajiformes
  • Knifefish - Gymnotiformes
]Especially popular are the characins, the catfish and the perch-like ones. The cichlid, especially the butterfly cichlid, is particularly splendid and interesting because of its reproduction and colouring. But also angelfish and discus fish are very popular.

In order to list the individual possible fish, we have to go into even more detail. One has to keep in mind that some fish, such as the guppy, are native to South America, but are more likely to have entered the Amazon as neozoa. Those who want to lead a real biotope aquarium and stick exactly to the origins of nature have to cross some of the fishes off the list. All fishes included in the list come from South America:

Amazonas Aquarium Fish Stocking and Furnishing Examples

The Amazon offers different sections of the river, each with different plants, animals and different water. It is important that the creatures and the conditions harmonize.

Black Water River

  • Amazonic white-tailed lemur
  • Echinodorus grisebachii
Furnishings and substrate
  • Roots (Moorkies roots)
  • Floor fine and dark covered with leaves(sea almond tree, oak leaf, rubber tree leaves)
]The leaves give off their tannic acid and also the humic substances to the water and colour it in the yellowish to brown shade that is usual for black water

With our lists you can quickly put together a suitable Amazonas aquarium with a little bit of preliminary information about the habits of the plants and ornamental fish.

Care Amazonas tanks

An Amazonas aquarium needs much less maintenance than you might initially imagine. Basically it is all about keeping the water values stable. Some Amazonas fish species are more sensitive than others, so you should find out in advance exactly how hard the water is, the pH value, the water temperature and the germ tolerance of the fish. Since some fish species prefer a muddy bottom or a bottom covered with leaves, it is naturally less common to clean here than in a clear water tank with light sand. If you bring a balanced number of the right Amazonian creatures into the tank, you will have much less maintenance effort. For example, one of the catfish helps to eat algae. There are also Amazon prawns that partially break down mulm with it.

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