Aquariums are maintained by people for many different reasons, but the most common has to be because of their natural beauty. An aquarium is like a moving picture. Fish of many different colors, shapes and sizes move around dynamically, and maybe even plants or corals sway in the current adding beautiful colors and textures to the work of art. The individual fishes’ characteristics or “personalities” also add interest.
It has been known that aquariums have a therapeutic, relaxing effect on people which is why they are often found in doctor’s or dentist’s offices. Loosing yourself in your own underwater world reduces anxiety and stress. Even the sound of running water from the filtration system has a calming effect. You too can reap the same psychological and emotional benefits from a fish tank that patients in hospitals and nursing homes enjoy.
Many people simply enjoy surrounding themselves with nature, especially in response to an increasing artificial world. Generations ago plants and animals were integral parts of our lives, but now most people live and work in high-tech environments full of inanimate objects. A fish tank is like a garden – a little slice of nature brought into someone’s home as a way to reconnect with the natural world that many of us crave so much.
Aquariums offer virtually endless possibilities. Coral, plants, or even rocks and wood for that matter can be the focal point of an aquarium, using fish to supplement the decorations’ natural beauty. Some people like to recreate a specific location, like a stream in Borneo, using only plants and animals that would be found in that location in the wild. Others prefer keeping large predatory fish, or small colorful schooling fish, or maybe even unique fish like ones that swim upside-down.
With 70% of the Earth’s surface being covered in water, there is an endless variety of fish, plants, and other animals to populate your aquarium. Of the 20,000 fish species cataloged, at least 2,000 are routinely available in the pet industry. When you add all the available plants, corals, shrimps, and not to mention the occasional crab, snail or frog, no other department can even come close to offering you the variety that the Fish Department does.
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