Basic Standards for a Seahorse Tank

Setting up a seahorse tank is slightly different than your average saltwater tank 

Basic goals are:


  • Tank Size – anything 20 gallons or larger
  • Lighting – enough to grow caulerpa (ka-ler-pa) or seaweed¬† It doesn’t matter what kind or color¬† More than a single, low wattage bulb.
  • Filtration – Anything will do
  • Circulation – Low, a single 100 to 150 gph power head in a 20 to 30 gallon works
  • Landscaping – Seaweed and a few rocks will do
  • Substrates – 1 inch or less of the finer #0 aragonite- no plenum needed

Set up and cycle with our live sand and ammonium chloride.¬† After roughly 3 weeks we will give you live seaweed to plant. Keep the lights on 14 hours and the pumps going. We will also give you more ammonium chloride. Once a week you will add 2-3 ml. This keeps the bacteria at a maximum and more importantly produce nitrates. Nitrates are fertilizer for the seaweed. As the seaweed grows you see hundreds of tiny copapods (co-pa-pods)¬†¬† These are natural foods for seahorses. When you have a good growth of seaweed you’re ready to saddle up¬†¬†(See Seahorse Tips)

Let me know when you’re ready and I’ll order seahorses. It is easy to get tank raised seahorses but they are only half grown¬†– about 3″ tall.¬†¬† I recommend 2 females and 1 male. Different species are available such as¬† H. reidi, H. kuda, H. kelloggi¬†and H. erectus. A¬†great descriptive website is¬†Seahorse Source.

I’ll let you in on a secret. The brightly colored red, orange and yellow seahorses are that color because of their surroundings. The seahorses are kept in a tank with brightly colored red, orange and yellow plastic plants. They will mimic their surroundings, Black ones will turn yellow, I recommend you don’t.

If possible pick up your new arrivals on shipping day and acclimate (see Dripline Plus ) them directly into your tank. Read Seahorse Keeping and Care & Feeding of Seahorses for more information.

Hippocampus Reidi

H kuda

H. Kuda

H. Sp.

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