Adding Salt to Guppy Water

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Guppies are often kept as pets in tanks of various sizes. Keeping guppies is relatively simple when you understand the type of water that they need to be kept in and why. Salt plays an important role in the health of the tank and the guppies. For those who plan to keep guppies, adding salt to water will become a regular part of the maintenance routine.

Guppies and Salt Water

Adding salt to guppy water is important, because it is often assumed that guppies are freshwater fish, and don’t need salt to stay alive. While guppies are a tropical freshwater strain of fish, they still thrive when there is salt, albeit a relatively small amount, in the water in which they live. This is especially important in tanks where bacteria can often be a problem.

You can simply add aquarium salt to your guppy water. This salt can be found at your local pet store. The aquarium salt is a good pick, especially if your pH is high because it will give the necessary salinity while also providing minerals that are needed for fish health. If your tank has a high pH when tested with an aquarium test kit, consider adding an ocean salt product with only trace amounts of minerals.

How Much Salt to Add

To maintain the correct level of salt in the water, add one tablespoon of salt for every five gallons of water in your tank. When you change the water, you must change the salt as well. Never add salt directly to a tank that has live fish in it. The guppies cannot come in direct contact with the salt; it needs to be dissolved or it can kill them. Simply dissolve salt in a cup of aquarium water that you'll be adding to the tank.

Importance of Salt Water in a Guppy Tank

Adding salt to your guppy tank makes your guppies better able to produce what is known as a slime coat. This is a coating of slime on their bodies that helps to protect them from any bacteria in a tank. The addition of salt to guppy water also helps to neutralize high nitrates, which can inhibit the growth of bacteria.

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