Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources (
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-   -   Aquarium light duration (

yellowgirl 07-29-2010 10:45 PM

Aquarium light duration
Hi everyone,

I haven't been back here for a while. My last post was a question about mollies, platties and guppies crossbreeding ... Just to update, all the fish in the pics are still going strong and everyone still cross breeds with everyone else :lol:. Every now and then I swap some fish with friends to try to keep my lot from interbreeding too much.

Now, onto my question for today. I want to set up a small display tank in my shop as I'll shortly be adding fish food and a few accessories and I think a tank would look really nice in the shop. Can I keep the light on 24 hours a day? I'd like it to be part of my night-time display as well. If not, what's the maximum time I can keep the light on using a timer?


Byron 07-29-2010 10:52 PM

Hi Jo,

The light over an aquarium should never be on for 24 hours a day. Tropical fish live in the tropics (naturally;-)) where they have equal daylight and darkness, about 10 hours each, with 4 hours as dusk and dawn. They need total darkness of about 10 hours, so they can "rest" and like us, recharge their batteries. In tanks with light continually, fish are highly stressed and often disease breaks out. It just is not natural for them.

The timing of the light/dark can be anything you wish, so long as they get some complete darkness--which means no room lights. With a timer for the tank light, you can have it on during the period when you normally are there to see the aquarium, and off when you're not, provided there is complete darkness during the off time.


zof 07-29-2010 10:56 PM

I was wonder could a solution be using moonlight LED or what ever people use? Or would that still be to much light for the fish, even if they have places to hide from what little light the moonlight puts out?

Byron 07-29-2010 11:02 PM

Darkness means just that. The fish need darkness. As long as they get sufficient the moon lights for part of the evening shouldn't be an issue, but if you are there to see the tank, I would want the light on to see it.

yellowgirl 07-29-2010 11:09 PM

Thanks! I'll just keep the light on during shop hours :-)

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