Many different colorful fish can be added to a tank like this, and some of the most beautiful specimens in the world are a possibility.
However, there are some things you'll need to know before setting up your saltwater tank.
They require more attention and care than freshwater fish tanks, and are not for the beginning aquarium keeper.
But if you take the time to learn about your fish, the environment they need to live in, and the best way to operate a saltwater fish tank, you can have a truly enjoyable, attractive tank that will give you years of joy.
Don't think that there's a lot more maintenance to keeping a saltwater tank healthy than for a freshwater tank.
If you know what you're doing, it can actually be very simple.
However, no fish tank is going to do well if you just fill it with water and dump in fish, and saltwater species are even more likely to be sensitive to changes in their environments than freshwater species.
Why is that? Well, the fish most often kept in a saltwater fish tank are used to a relatively consistent environment - the ocean does not change much.
By comparison, a lake or stream is likely to have different water quality, temperature, and availability at different times of year.
Freshwater species are mostly hardier than saltwater ones because of this.
However, if you have the ability to maintain your tank at the right temperature and water quality, and with the right amount of light, your fish will prosper! A saltwater fish tank must be routinely monitored for ammonia levels, salt levels, and other water quality issues, but if you keep those in check, it should operate just fine.
It's very important to get your saltwater fish tank set up and running smoothly before you add any wildlife.
Think of this as giving you time to decide which tropical jewels you want to pick for your tank - there are so many that it can be really hard to choose, after all! Set up the tank with its substrate, add water that's not contaminated by any chemicals, and then add salt to the correct concentration.
Then let the tank circulate for a while so that things can work properly.
Add decorations like rocks and similar items later - just make sure they're free of toxins that might hurt your fish.
Once you've got a saltwater fish tank running so it can support life, you can start by adding a fish or two.
Do it slowly, since these creatures have had a big shock in moving from their old tanks to your new one.
Choose fish that have been captive bred for the lowest environmental impact and the healthiest animals - wild caught fish can carry diseases, and taking them from their environment hurts breeding stock.
Take a reasonable amount of time between adding fish to make sure they're acclimatized to their new environment.
This can be a lot of fun, since it lets you collect fish a few at a time.
The end result is a beautiful fish tank full of truly amazing fish.