Unique and Creative Aquarium Decorations & Accessories for your Fish Tank

When your inner designer won’t come out to play, deciding on your tank decor can be a frustrating process.

So I’ve created this guide to make it easier for you.

In this article you’ll learn:

  • We’ll talk about 10 types of decorations you can use for inspiration.
  • Simple things to consider before choosing your decorations so you can get the right ones for your tank,

10 Different Styles of Aquarium Decor to Inspire you

When choosing which decorations to add to your aquarium, it’s important to consider the benefits and potential drawbacks of each.

1. Driftwood

Natural driftwood is a popular addition to many aquariums and can help create a natural, simplistic feel. It also acts as a great hiding spot for more timid fish.

Driftwood can be bought in many stores and is usually very safe. You can, however, fish driftwood out of rivers and streams, adding it to your tank without spending any money.

You should exercise caution when doing this and be sure to quarantine wild-sourced wood. If you don’t, you run the risk of adding harmful microbes and parasites, having the potential to make your fish seriously ill.

Boiling driftwood before placing it in an aquarium can help remove some of the tannins in the wood. Tannins are harmless to fish, but many people don’t like that they can dye the water brown. 

SaleBestseller No. 1
majoywoo Natural Small Coral Driftwood for Aquarium Decor Fish Tank Decorations, Assorted Driftwood Branch 4.5-7.5' 5 Pcs, Reptile Decor
majoywoo Natural Small Coral Driftwood for Aquarium Decor Fish Tank Decorations, Assorted Driftwood Branch 4.5-7.5" 5 Pcs, Reptile Decor
    Bestseller No. 2
    WDEFUN Natural Large Driftwood for Aquarium Decor Fish Tank Decoration, 2 Pieces 9-14'' Assorted Branch for Decorations on Reptiles Tank
    WDEFUN Natural Large Driftwood for Aquarium Decor Fish Tank Decoration, 2 Pieces 9-14"" Assorted Branch for Decorations on Reptiles Tank

      Last update on 2024-05-08 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

      2. Aquarium Stones and Rocks

      There are many attractive stones, pebbles and rocks available commercially which serve as great additions to many aquariums. They’re also ideal for nature themed tanks, comforting fish by mimicking their native habitat.

      You can also add rocks found in the wild to your aquarium. Before doing this, however, it’s vital that you sanitize the rocks before adding them to avoid bringing in harmful organisms.

      Be mindful, too, that some rocks, like lace rock, can be sharp and cause harm to your fish and should be avoided.

      Also, some rocks can contain calcium that can leach into water, hardening it over time. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, especially if you have really soft water.

      You can test rocks for calcium content with an aquarium liquid nitrate test kit. Nitrate tests contain two bottles, usually labeled bottle 1 and bottle 2. Bottle 1 contains hydrochloric acid. If you put a few drops on a rock, and it starts to foam, it means the rock is calciferous, and will leach minerals into your water over time.

      Never bake or boil rocks. This can cause the rock to shatter or even explode. The best way to sanitize rocks is using the bleach method I covered under the “Sanitizing Non-Commercial Items” section above.  

      Sale
      Natural Slate Stone 3 to 5 inch Rocks for Miniature and Fairy Garden, Aquascaping Aquariums, Reptile enclosures & Model Railroad. (5lbs)
      Natural Slate Stone 3 to 5 inch Rocks for Miniature and Fairy Garden, Aquascaping Aquariums, Reptile enclosures & Model Railroad. (5lbs)

        Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

        3. Caves

        Adding caves to a tank is a great way to provide hiding spots for fish. Sometimes, fish feel shy or threatened and need a little place to duck into. 

        And some species, like plecos or other catfish, are full time cave dwelling fish. They are nocturnal, spending their days tucked away in a cave and only emerging to eat after dark.

        So, adding extra caves can help all of your different fish stake out a little home territory that makes them feel more secure.

        Bestseller No. 1
        Pisces 15lb Seiryu Rock for Aquascaping, Aquariums, Terrariums, Vivariums
        Pisces 15lb Seiryu Rock for Aquascaping, Aquariums, Terrariums, Vivariums

        Last update on 2024-05-08 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

        Hygger Sunken Log Resin

        hygger Small Aquarium Ornament Poly Resin Wood Trunk Log Fish Tank Decoration for up to 20 Gallon Tank Betta Fish Accessories Hideout Cave(Tree Log)
        hygger Small Aquarium Ornament Poly Resin Wood Trunk Log Fish Tank Decoration for up to 20 Gallon Tank Betta Fish Accessories Hideout Cave(Tree Log)

          Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

          6 Pieces Stackable Ceramic Fish Tank Hideout Caves

          6 Pieces Aquarium Decoration Rock Caves Stackable Ceramic Fish Tank Hideout Cave Stone Ornaments Hideaway for Betta Shrimp Cichlid Hiding Breeding Spawning Decor
          6 Pieces Aquarium Decoration Rock Caves Stackable Ceramic Fish Tank Hideout Cave Stone Ornaments Hideaway for Betta Shrimp Cichlid Hiding Breeding Spawning Decor

            Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

            Police Box Decorations for Fish and Shrimp 

            I personally own this decoration. I’ve had it in my tank for almost 2 years and it still looks great. My zebra loaches love this and use it as their main cave during the day.

            Aquarium Fish Tank Ornament Police Box Telephone Decorations for Fish and Shrimp to Cave Hideouts for Hiding Police One Size
            Aquarium Fish Tank Ornament Police Box Telephone Decorations for Fish and Shrimp to Cave Hideouts for Hiding Police One Size

              Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

              4. Ships

              Sunken ships can be bought from most commercial retailers. If you’re looking to create a natural, sea-like theme, sunken ships are a safe, fish-friendly option that complement most tank designs well.

              Ships also provide great hiding spots for fish, allowing prey species to conceal themselves for security and comfort.

              Bestseller No. 1
              SLOCME Aquarium Large Shipwreck Decorations - Fish Tank Lifelike Ship Decor,Resin Material Large Pirate Ship Decor
              SLOCME Aquarium Large Shipwreck Decorations - Fish Tank Lifelike Ship Decor,Resin Material Large Pirate Ship Decor

                Last update on 2024-05-08 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                Underwater Treasures Battleship

                Underwater Treasures Battleship Ruins
                Underwater Treasures Battleship Ruins

                  Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                  SH-RuiDu Aquarium Air Driven Action Shipwreck Decoration

                  SH-RuiDu Aquarium Shipwreck Ornament Air Pump Driven Action Shipwreck Fish Tank Decoration
                  SH-RuiDu Aquarium Shipwreck Ornament Air Pump Driven Action Shipwreck Fish Tank Decoration

                  Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                  Large Mountain View Aquarium Cave Bridge Decoration

                  PakyKai Large Fish Tank Decorations, Mountain View Aquarium Ornament with Tree House Cave Bridge Artificial Plastic Plants Aquarium Decorations
                  PakyKai Large Fish Tank Decorations, Mountain View Aquarium Ornament with Tree House Cave Bridge Artificial Plastic Plants Aquarium Decorations

                    Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                    Ulifery Walking Land Tank Aquarium Ornament, Large

                    Sale
                    Ulifery Robot Cool Walking Land Tank Aquarium Ornament Alien Fish Tank Decorations for Betta Large
                    Ulifery Robot Cool Walking Land Tank Aquarium Ornament Alien Fish Tank Decorations for Betta Large

                      Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                      5. Ruins

                      Ancient ruins are an excellent addition to Atlantis/mermaid-themed tanks and act as perfect places for prey fish to hide.

                      Bestseller No. 1
                      Pet Products Fish Tank Decorations Ancient Tunnel Ruins Ornaments Ornament for Aquarium Monster Large
                      Pet Products Fish Tank Decorations Ancient Tunnel Ruins Ornaments Ornament for Aquarium Monster Large
                        Bestseller No. 2
                        emours Aquarium Decoration Fish Tank Landscape Ornament Vintage Ruins Roman Column
                        emours Aquarium Decoration Fish Tank Landscape Ornament Vintage Ruins Roman Column

                          Last update on 2024-05-08 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                          SLOCME Large Angkor Wat Buddha Statue Decoration

                          SLOCME Aquarium Large Angkor Wat Buddha Statue Temple Decorations - Aquarium Angkor Buddha Decor Fish Tank Large Buddha Statue Ornament
                          SLOCME Aquarium Large Angkor Wat Buddha Statue Temple Decorations - Aquarium Angkor Buddha Decor Fish Tank Large Buddha Statue Ornament

                            Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                            6. Statues

                            Statues of people and animals can add interesting focal points to your aquarium. They’re great for sea or Asian themed tanks.

                            Also, many statues made for aquariums include caves that make good hiding places for shy fish.

                            Bestseller No. 1
                            mozhixue Fish Tank Buddha Statue Decorations Aquarium Decor Betta Fish Tank Accessories Ornament Small Meditating Sandstone Buda Statues for Underwater Landscaping Home Zen Decor
                            mozhixue Fish Tank Buddha Statue Decorations Aquarium Decor Betta Fish Tank Accessories Ornament Small Meditating Sandstone Buda Statues for Underwater Landscaping Home Zen Decor
                              Bestseller No. 2
                              Neeenn Aquarium Skeleton King and Queen Statue Decor, Funny Easter Halloween Fish Tank Skull Ornament, Decorative Sculpture for Fish Tank Aquarium Terrarium Vivarium
                              Neeenn Aquarium Skeleton King and Queen Statue Decor, Funny Easter Halloween Fish Tank Skull Ornament, Decorative Sculpture for Fish Tank Aquarium Terrarium Vivarium

                                Last update on 2024-05-08 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                JONJUMP Fish Tank Buddha Sitting Statue

                                JONJUMP Fish Tank Buddha Sitting Statue Aquarium Decoration Tank Ornament Fengshui Praying Sitting Figurine Home Garden Decor
                                JONJUMP Fish Tank Buddha Sitting Statue Aquarium Decoration Tank Ornament Fengshui Praying Sitting Figurine Home Garden Decor

                                  Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                  POPETPOP Mermaid Figure

                                  Sale
                                  POPETPOP Mermaid Figure Resin Aquarium Statue Miniature Garden Fairy Gardens Rockery Ornaments Fish Tank Decoration
                                  POPETPOP Mermaid Figure Resin Aquarium Statue Miniature Garden Fairy Gardens Rockery Ornaments Fish Tank Decoration

                                    Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                    BCSIUHD Aquarium Ornament – Seahorse Mermaid

                                    BCSIUHD Aquarium Ornament - Seahorse Mermaid Decorations,Fish Tank Supplies Accessories,Mermaid Gifts for Girls, Mediterranean Princess Statue Home Decoration
                                    BCSIUHD Aquarium Ornament - Seahorse Mermaid Decorations,Fish Tank Supplies Accessories,Mermaid Gifts for Girls, Mediterranean Princess Statue Home Decoration

                                      Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                      7. Bubble Makers

                                      Bubble chests, underwater rivers and air stones not only look attractive, but are often an essential addition to densely-populated aquariums.

                                      If you’re keeping one or more highly-active fish in a single tank, it’s important to ensure that they have an adequate supply of oxygen.

                                      Busier fish will require more than slower species, so it’s important that you keep oxygen levels high by adding in air-producing decorations.

                                      When incorporating bubble makers into your aquarium, ensure that they aren’t too strong for your fish to handle. If your water flow becomes too high, fish will find it difficult to swim and become distressed, often leading to disease.

                                      High water flow can be canceled out by adding dense objects like driftwood.

                                      Bestseller No. 1
                                      DXCEL LED Aquarium Air Bubble Light Fish Tank Air Curtain Bubble Stone Disk with 6 Color Changing LEDs
                                      DXCEL LED Aquarium Air Bubble Light Fish Tank Air Curtain Bubble Stone Disk with 6 Color Changing LEDs

                                        Last update on 2024-05-08 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                        Number-one Aquarium Bubble Light

                                        Number-one Aquarium Bubble Light LED Fish Tank Bubbler Light, Remote Controlled Aquariums Air Stone Disk Lamp with 16 Color Changing, 4 Lighting Effects for Fish Tanks and Fish Ponds
                                        Number-one Aquarium Bubble Light LED Fish Tank Bubbler Light, Remote Controlled Aquariums Air Stone Disk Lamp with 16 Color Changing, 4 Lighting Effects for Fish Tanks and Fish Ponds

                                          Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                          8. Aquarium Backgrounds

                                          Aquarium backgrounds can serve as the perfect finishing touch to your tank.

                                          Both poster backgrounds, flat, 2D pieces that stick to the back of tanks, and structured backgrounds which are 3D and textured can be used to give your aquarium a more realistic and creative feel.

                                          Backgrounds should be secured with silicone or mounting gel and left for 48 hours before adding water and fish into the tank.

                                          ELEBOX 20″ x 48″ Fish Tank Background 2 Sided River Bed & Lake 

                                          ELEBOX New 20' x 48' Fish Tank Background 2 Sided River Bed & Lake Background Aquarium
                                          ELEBOX New 20" x 48" Fish Tank Background 2 Sided River Bed & Lake Background Aquarium

                                            Last update on 2024-05-23 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                            ELEBOX Aquatic Plant Reef Beach Aquarium Background Double-Sided

                                            ELEBOX Fish Tank Background Aquatic Plant Reef Beach Aquarium Wallpaper Background Double Sides Background Poster
                                            ELEBOX Fish Tank Background Aquatic Plant Reef Beach Aquarium Wallpaper Background Double Sides Background Poster

                                              Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                              Oyunngs Aquarium Background, Underwater Forest

                                              Oyunngs Aqrium Background, 3D Effect Waterproof Fore Landsce Underwater Fish Tank Backdrop Poer Decoration PVC Adhesive Sticker(6141Cm)
                                              Oyunngs Aqrium Background, 3D Effect Waterproof Fore Landsce Underwater Fish Tank Backdrop Poer Decoration PVC Adhesive Sticker(6141Cm)

                                                Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                Zerodis Aquarium Background, Water Grass 

                                                Sale
                                                Aquarium Poster, Seafloor Water Grass Fish Tank Background Decoration 3D PVC Self Adhesive Fish Tank Wallpaper Sticker for Aquarium Fish Tank Decoration(24.0 x 11.8in)
                                                Aquarium Poster, Seafloor Water Grass Fish Tank Background Decoration 3D PVC Self Adhesive Fish Tank Wallpaper Sticker for Aquarium Fish Tank Decoration(24.0 x 11.8in)

                                                  Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                  9. Submersible Light Ornament

                                                  Submersive lights can also be added to fish tanks, providing a soft, attractive glow without being too bright and invasive for fish.

                                                  These serve as a great way to brighten up your aquarium without disturbing your pets.

                                                  Submersive lights can also come in a range of colors, allowing you to transform your aesthetic and enhance particular color tones.

                                                  GreenSun LED Aquarium Light, Fish Tank Light with APP Control

                                                  GreenSun LED Aquarium Light, Fish Tank Light with APP Control, IP68 Submersible Waterproof Strip Bar Light, RGB Color Changing, 4.5 Watts 15inch/38cm
                                                  GreenSun LED Aquarium Light, Fish Tank Light with APP Control, IP68 Submersible Waterproof Strip Bar Light, RGB Color Changing, 4.5 Watts 15inch/38cm

                                                    Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                    Fish Tank Light, RGB Aquarium Lights

                                                    Aquarium Lights LED Underwater RGB Fish Tank Lights IP68 Waterproof Submersible Remote Control Tank Lights Color Changing Fish Aquarium Tank Pond Waterfall Lighting, 27 inch
                                                    Aquarium Lights LED Underwater RGB Fish Tank Lights IP68 Waterproof Submersible Remote Control Tank Lights Color Changing Fish Aquarium Tank Pond Waterfall Lighting, 27 inch

                                                      Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                      10. Ceramic Ornaments

                                                      Implementing ceramic ornaments into an aquarium is a contentious practice with some hobbyists claiming it to be perfectly safe and others totally against their use.

                                                      The truth is that some ceramic ornaments are, indeed, totally harmless, while others leach toxic metals as their glaze dissolves and can seriously harm fish.

                                                      Any object that is stamped as ‘dinnerware safe’ is suitable for use. This means that its glaze has been fired using methods that prevent chemical leaching under acidic conditions. Non-dinnerware pieces do not meet these standards and should be avoided.

                                                      If you’re unsure about the safety of a ceramic ornament, dilute a household acid like vinegar to a pH similar to the most acidic conditions your aquarium could reach. A pH of 5 should suffice.

                                                      Submerge the ornament, or part of it, in this solution and wait a month before examining it again. Check its glaze. If any of the shininess of the object has deteriorated, this indicates chemical leaching and the object is unsuitable for aquatic usage.

                                                      Plain/unglazed ceramics like terracotta are suitable as they come with no risk of chemical leakage. Ceramics with jagged edges can be chipped away and coated in a bead of aquatic silicone to prevent injury.

                                                      Saim Ceramic Jar Aquarium Decorations Fish Tank Cave Breeding Cones Cave Fish Tank Ornaments for Betta Fish Amano Shrimp Cichlid Bonsai to Play, Hide and Rest, Yellow
                                                      Saim Ceramic Jar Aquarium Decorations Fish Tank Cave Breeding Cones Cave Fish Tank Ornaments for Betta Fish Amano Shrimp Cichlid Bonsai to Play, Hide and Rest, Yellow

                                                        Last update on 2024-05-23 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                        BCSIUHD Aquarium Decoration – Brown Ceramic Jar 

                                                        BCSIUHD Aquarium Decoration - Brown Ceramic Jar Fish Tank Cave Breeding Cones Cave Fish Tank Ornaments for Amano Shrimp Cichlid Bonsai to Play, Hide and Rest
                                                        BCSIUHD Aquarium Decoration - Brown Ceramic Jar Fish Tank Cave Breeding Cones Cave Fish Tank Ornaments for Amano Shrimp Cichlid Bonsai to Play, Hide and Rest

                                                          Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                          DOHO Ceramic square shrimp hideout

                                                          DOHO Aquarium Cave Ceramic Decoration for Amano Shrimp Cichlid with Fish Hideaway and Breeding
                                                          DOHO Aquarium Cave Ceramic Decoration for Amano Shrimp Cichlid with Fish Hideaway and Breeding

                                                            Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                            Norgail Handmade Brown Ceramic Shelters – Breeding Tube

                                                            Norgail Handmade Brown Ceramic Shelters - Shrimp Habitat, Breeding Tube, Hiding cave - Hideaway Pipes Reduce Stress, Encourage spawning - Decorative Aquarium Accessories 1PCS
                                                            Norgail Handmade Brown Ceramic Shelters - Shrimp Habitat, Breeding Tube, Hiding cave - Hideaway Pipes Reduce Stress, Encourage spawning - Decorative Aquarium Accessories 1PCS

                                                              Last update on 2024-05-22 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                              Bonus: Fun Fish Tank Ornaments

                                                              Other fish-friendly aquatic ornaments include:

                                                              Preview Product
                                                              Penn-Plax Age-of-Magic Wizard’s Castle Aquarium Decoration – Safe for Freshwater and Saltwater Fish Tanks – Extra Large – Part A Penn-Plax Age-of-Magic Wizard’s Castle Aquarium Decoration – Safe for Freshwater and Saltwater...
                                                              COOSPIDER Hobbit Miniature Landscape Hillside Fairy Hole House Manor Decor Ideas for Aquariums Reptile Box Shelter Ornament 11' L x 8' W x 6.5' H COOSPIDER Hobbit Miniature Landscape Hillside Fairy Hole House Manor Decor Ideas for Aquariums...
                                                              Penn-Plax Spongebob Squarepants Officially Licensed Aquarium Ornament – Spongebob’s Pineapple House – Medium Penn-Plax Spongebob Squarepants Officially Licensed Aquarium Ornament – Spongebob’s Pineapple...
                                                              Uniclife Aquarium Volcano Ornament Kit with Air Stone Bubbler Fish Tank Decorations Uniclife Aquarium Volcano Ornament Kit with Air Stone Bubbler Fish Tank Decorations
                                                              boxtech Poly Resin Lighthouse Aquarium Decoration - Artificial Decor Lamp House Baby Fish Hiding Fun Tank Aqurium Ornament Landscaping boxtech Poly Resin Lighthouse Aquarium Decoration - Artificial Decor Lamp House Baby Fish Hiding Fun...
                                                              Blue Ribbon Small Triceratops Skull Aquarium Ornament Blue Ribbon Small Triceratops Skull Aquarium Ornament

                                                              Last update on 2024-05-23 / Commissions Earned / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

                                                              Things you need to Consider when Choosing Aquarium Accessories

                                                              Fish inspecting aquarium statue

                                                              When deciding on your decorations, you should think about the following:

                                                              1. The Size of Your Aquarium

                                                              It’s no good having lots of great big, fancy accessories if your tank just ends up looking crowded and ugly.

                                                              It’ll be pretty distressing for your fish, too, if they have no room to move around.

                                                              If you have a smaller tank, less is often more. It’s better to have one or two attractive decorations that stand out instead of multiple that leave your fish with little living space.

                                                              And, if you’re finding it difficult to make a choice, decide on a theme to follow in your design. That way, you can add in decorations like sunken ships and mermaid kingdoms, making it easier to choose accessories by sticking to a particular topic.

                                                              Proper Height of Aquarium Elements

                                                              Separate your tank into three zones: top, middle and bottom. Fish tend to spend the majority of their time in any one of these three zones, so it’s important to keep some space free in each.

                                                              In order to balance the space available evenly, it’s wise to have one or two tall items that rise up into the top zone (depending on the size of your aquarium) and then two or three that are short – around an inch or two from the bottom of your tank.

                                                              Your fish will feel safer if your decorations follow some kind of structure. By using those tips, you can incorporate decorations and accessories without making your fish feel uncomfortable.

                                                              2. The Color of Your Fish

                                                              If you’re concerned about upsetting the aesthetic of your aquarium, you can prevent this by considering the color of your fish.

                                                              The color of your decorations will either compliment or clash with your fish. If you have lots of lightly-colored fish, a dark substrate and dull decorations can help to complement those tones.

                                                              Vibrant, bright fish look great against white gravel and pale decorations, making the color of your fish pop against the colorless background. Green plants can also work well.

                                                              3. How Active Are Your Fish?

                                                              Highly-active fish have a considerably higher oxygen uptake than more dormant breeds.

                                                              If you’re keeping such fish, oxygen-producing decorations like bubble chests and underwater rivers and bridges can help to provide plenty of air, keeping your fish healthy and allowing them to remain active.

                                                              4. Natural vs. Wild Aquarium Theme

                                                              The color of your accessories will set the theme of your aquarium.

                                                              If you wish to create a natural-looking theme for your tank, pea gravel and live, green plants are great choices in terms of color.

                                                              Neon hues and vibrant shades can create a more wild, showy look and help draw attention to particular areas of your aquarium.

                                                              Once you’ve decided on a theme, select the color of your decorations and accessories carefully to complement the feel of your tank.

                                                              5. Look Out for Sharp Edges

                                                              Decorations like fake plants can sometimes have sharp edges. These can seriously harm your fish by scratching at their scales, creating injuries and opening them up to infections.

                                                              When you’re choosing accessories for your aquarium, ensure that you avoid any that have sharp edges, allowing you to create an attractive aesthetic without risking your fish’s safety.

                                                              6. Consider Focus Points

                                                              When you’re adding decorations and accessories to your tank, it can help to select one or two focal points.

                                                              These points should stand out amongst the rest of your decor. Items like mermaid statues and bridges draw people’s attention, setting the scene throughout your aquarium and complementing your overall design.

                                                              7. Have Fun, But Exercise Caution When Adding New Things to Your Tank

                                                              While it’s easy to get carried away when decorating your tank, adding in household items and things found in the wild, you should always exercise caution when bringing something new into your fish’s home.

                                                              Sanitizing Non-Commercial Items

                                                              While store-bought decorations are generally very safe, objects like driftwood or rocks found in nature need to be cleaned before being added to your aquarium.

                                                              Driftwood should be boiled, or if this isn’t practical, soaked in very salty water for several days. Start out with hot water and it should be switched out as it becomes saturated with tannins. 

                                                              Tannins won’t harm your fish, but they may decrease your water’s KH and possibly pH, and lots of folks don’t like that they tint the water brown. 

                                                              To sterilize rocks or other hard decor, follow this process:

                                                              Equipment: 

                                                              • Buckets
                                                              • Plain chlorine bleach (sodium hypochlorite) 
                                                              • Dechlorinator 
                                                              • Tap water 
                                                              • Measuring cups

                                                              Steps: 

                                                              1. I usually recommend doing this in buckets in your bathtub or shower. Make sure you wear clothing you don’t mind getting bleach on.
                                                              2. Mix bleach and water in a bucket at a ratio of 20 parts water to 1 part bleach. So, for example, if you used 1 cup of bleach, you’d need to add 20 cups of water (1.5 gallons/5 quarts).
                                                              3. Submerge items and let them soak for several minutes (it may take up to 15 or 20 minutes to remove stubborn algae or staining).
                                                              4. Dump the bleach and rinse the items until you no longer smell bleach. Return the decor to the bucket, cover with water and add a 4 times overdose of dechlorinator. Let the items sit for 10 minutes.
                                                              5. Remove items and dump water. The decor is safe to place in the aquarium. 

                                                              Final Thoughts

                                                              The bottom line when it comes to adding decorations and accessories is to add in any decorations that take your fancy – providing that you take measures to ensure that they’re safe and non-toxic.

                                                              Your fish are indifferent to the vibrant colors or unusual decorations you may choose to add. It all comes down to personal choice.

                                                              By using the tips above, you can add your favourite ornaments to your aquarium without having to worry about harming your fish.

                                                              Christopher Adams
                                                              Christopher Adams

                                                              Hey there, my name is Christopher, and I've successfully ran freshwater aquariums for the past few decades. The mission of this site is to make it simple for anyone to run their own freshwater aquarium.

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