Colourful underwater world

There is an almost inexhaustible range of decorative elements for aquariums. The animal experts from your local Maxi Zoo explain what it all comes down to.

A well-cared for aquarium with its interesting lighting is a great eye-catcher, and many fish enthusiasts go to a lot of trouble decorating their underwater world. A relatively easy way to brighten up your tank is with an aquarium background. These hide boring walls and create a great overall visual impact – you can even get a range of designs these days. For extra appeal, there are textured backgrounds with embossed motifs and protruding rocks or roots that are attached to the inside of the tank to give the entire aquarium greater depth.

Apart from the background, aquarium accessories are the real décor. These include gravel or sand, roots and plants and a couple of artificial ornaments, from shipwrecks, ruined castles, Egyptian temples and beach scenes with palm trees though to cartoon characters and Christmas trees.

What to keep in mind when decorating your aquarium:


  • Plants play three roles in an aquarium – they produce oxygen, provide a place to retreat and serve as a source of food for some types of fish. You should keep the latter in particular in mind when choosing fish and plants! Plants are a good way to landscape your underwater world and add colourful accents or depth to the aquarium. Larger plants at the back and smaller ones at the front are very effective, for example.


  • Stones, caves and roots also provide a place for fish to retreat and are a must for every aquarium. Igneous rocks and clay imitations are both popular. Get your ornaments from a specialist pet shop to ensure that they do not contain any harmful substances. Don’t put wood, roots or stones you have collected yourself in the tank as even traces of non-toxic elements such as chalk can harm your fish.


  • Artificial ornaments can fulfil the same purpose as natural ones. These are made of resin and do not decompose over time or affect the tank’s biological equilibrium. However as much fun it is to decorate your aquarium, don’t overdo it and leave your fish enough room to move. Make sure caves and tunnels are big enough for your fish so that they can easily hide in and move though them.