9 Tips for Aquarists on Earth Day

Evan Baldonado

By Evan Baldonado
(Founder of AquariumKids)

Earth Day is “a movement that continues to inspire, challenge ideas, ignite passion and motivate people to action.” On April 22nd, people from around the world unite as part of this movement, turning off lights, planting trees, carpooling, and, ultimately, inspiring people to think about the environmental consequences of their actions.

Earth Day Flag by John McConnell, NASA, and SiBr4 (Public Domain)
Earth Day Flag
[Photo courtesy John McConnell, NASA, and SiBr4 — Public Domain]

Anyone can participate in Earth Day, but aquarists have even more fish-related opportunities to help save the planet. Without further ado, here are nine ways that you can help out:

  1. Ditch the carbon.

    Carbon is not a sustainable filter media as it requires constant changing. While it does occasionally have its uses, it is used far too liberally. Consider making the switch to Seachem Purigen (rechargeable), sponges, bio-balls, or other filter media options so that you do not have to keep replacing your carbon.

  2. Use LED lighting.

    LED lights are more energy-efficient than other types of lighting. Switching to LED will help conserve energy!

  3. Participate in a beach cleanup.

    Every day, human-generated trash kills animals in our oceans. By participating in a beach cleanup, you help save animals, our oceans, and the world!

  4. Eat sustainably-caught, local fish.

    Better yet, eliminate animals from your diet altogether because ”fish are friends, not food!“ When you eat fish, you not only kill friends, but you can harm our planet. If are still going to eat fish, however, take some time to view the Monterey Bay Aquarium's SeaFood Watch guide to select sustainable and well-sourced fish.

  5. Turn off your aquarium lights at night!

    Fish prefer a regular light schedule. Turning your aquarium lights off at night will keep your fish healthier, help reduce unwanted algae, and save energy!

  6. Join a local plant/animal swap.

    By joining a local plant/animal swap, you can get the fish and plants that you want without contributing to big businesses. Getting fish locally is always better as it eliminates the economic and environmental costs of transportation and shipping.

  7. Avoid purchasing unsustainably-sourced fish!

    This one should be a no-brainer. Purchasing unsustainably caught fish for your aquarium is irresponsible and can contribute to the destruction of native habitats.

  8. Ensure that your aquarium equipment is working properly!

    Take the time to check that your aquarium equipment is running correctly. Is your lighting timer not working? Is your filter jammed? You can save energy and make your system more efficient by doing this!

  9. Make every day Earth Day!

    Earth Day is April 22nd, but you should care for the Earth every day. Make every day Earth Day!

Thanks for reading these Earth Day Tips (published 4/21/16, last edited 4/21/17)! For more information, please browse around! Feel free to contact me at evanb [at] aquariumkids [dot] com with any questions.

What are you doing this Earth Day? Do you have any other tips for fellow aquarists? Let's start a discussion in the comments section below:

Evan Baldonado

By Evan Baldonado
(Founder of AquariumKids)

Image credits: