Biotope (habitat) aquarium types
Biotope aquatics: a fascinating journey to the home areas of our ornamental fish
Reproducing a biotope (habitat) always starts with some specialised literature and internet research. Everyone has their own favourite fish species (e.g. angel fish) or a region, you find fascinating (e.g. Lake Tanganyika). With a bit of luck you’ll find some photos or even videos of your chosen region. Now you’ll begin to imagine what your aquarium could look like.
Then the detailed research starts, and this may include the following points:
Specialist literature and Google will help to give you information about the habitat. This includes the water values, incl. temperature, photos – ideally also underwater photos, descriptions of the dry and the wet season with effects on the biotope on animal and plant species which have their habitat there.
South America/Venezuela, Rio Carrao, near Salto Angel Waterfall
The video shows you a habitat in the table-top mountains of Venezuela. First above and then under water. Have a look at the size of the rocks and their arrangement. Can you see any aquatic plants? What substrate is there? Even such short videos are very helpful to understand and reproduce a habitat.
So many questions
Which biotope do I like? Which continent? What kind of biotope: jungle, savannah, river, lake, rocky reef, rapids?
Does the biotope section fit into my aquarium (aquarium size)?
How can I decorate all the parts (the ground, the stones, the wood and the plants) in a way that is not only natural, but also visually appealing? This is the biggest challenge and it is also the most fun to resolve!
Suggestions for aquariums
Two biotope aquariums are featured as themed JBL aquariums: JBL Pantanal River® and JBL Malawi Rocks®. But neither is a biotope aquarium in the strict sense; the plants used don’t originate from the respective biotope or even continent. We selected them for visual reasons or because they suited the water type. Neither do the fish come from just one biotope, although they do live in a neighbouring region! Nevertheless both themed aquariums can be described as biotope aquariums.