Freshwater Aquariums at Home – Benefits & History


home-aquariumWhy Would I Want an Aquarium?

We’ve all appreciated aquariums before.  They can be anywhere.  You’ll find them at offices, friends’ homes, restaurants, all over.  Lots of people keep aquariums as a hobby, and that’s what we’re going to talk about here.

What does the word “aquarium” mean?  It actually has a root based on the Latin word “aqua” (which means water, of course).  And “ruim” which means building.  Put those all together and they mean a water building, for fish!

Aquarium History

The mid-1800s was when the modern version of aquariums was developed.  A see-thru tank in which to see your fish swimming around.  But before that, even in ancient times, cultures kept their wild live fish in ponds by their houses so that they could be kept until dinnertime.

And of course, in China, their favorite fish was the koi.  But they also had goldfish. They bred these types of fish as long as 2,000 years ago. Also during certain Chinese dynasties, goldfish were kept in ceramic bowls as pets.

Even in ancient times in Egyptian art pieces, a type of aquarium is shown.  It was like a public aquarium where fish lived and were kept in rectangular pools in temples.  Consider this an ancient type of aquarium.

During the beginning of the 1900s, fish keeping at home in an aquarium became more popular.  You could see fish keeping in aquariums in museums and public places.  But with the invention of filters and lighting, people could start keeping fish as hobbies in their homes.

This led to quite a new business as people keeping fish as pets needed new and exciting tanks to keep their fish in.  They would also need more modern ways to filter their water and to keep their fish happy and healthy.

Thus the current freshwater fish keeping hobby at home.  All this led to lots of choices for aquarium keeping.  There are hundreds of options in lighting, filters, aquariums, substrate, plants and housing for fish!

How Big Do Aquariums Get?

So far the largest aquarium in the world is the Georgia Aquarium, housing 6.3 million gallons of water.

What Are the Benefits to Keeping an Aquarium?

So many studies have proven that aquarium keeping will reduce stress, lower your blood pressure, relax and basically improve your health.

When older people have access to watching a fish tank, their blood pressure has dropped.  Hyperactive children become calmer when watching aquariums filled with fish.

In dentist offices, fish tanks placed in the waiting room resulted in less pain medication administered versus this who just sat in a waiting room without an aquarium.  And it’s the fish that were calming.  If it was just a plain tank with plants and no fish, it’s not quite as calming.

Just think back.  Remember how many places you’ve seen aquariums?  Like doctors’ offices, dentists, hospitals, waiting rooms?  Quite often there will be a fish tank around, just for calming purposes.

Other studies have shown that Alzheimer’s patients reacted strongly to fish aquariums being place in their dining rooms.  The results were that they became less aggressive, they ate bigger portions, and they needed less medication.

It’s also been shown that just watching a dvd of fish swimming can relax a person. It’s actually quite amazing.  So — just having fish around, whether you have a fish bowl or a nice aquarium set-up, there will be loads of benefits, and you’ll enjoy having an easy pet to care for.