HOW TO increase fish coloration – with sun tanning?

you know it was just about three months
ago when I purchased three more Asian Arowana for my local fish store one fish
two fish now being a 2000 gallon aquarium of course a dream for me would
be to have an Asian Arowana community as well as freshwater stingrays and I was
well on my way we have five freshwater stingrays in there right now as well as
at first we only had one Asian Arowana of course an Asian Arowana community is
cost prohibitive but I got a really good deal on the remaining three so I had
together what’s up guys no real issue with an Asian Arowana community is the
fact that you’re probably always going to have fish with torn fins and they’re
always gonna kind of look beat up because Asian Arowana tend to be a
pretty territorial so a lot of the times you want to add in seven or more and
cram them into a relatively small tank which tends to diffuse aggression but
the arowana still look kind of terrible so adding only four to a 2000 gallon
aquarium was a bit risky however over the past couple of months I’ve actually
had great success all of the initial fighting that they did subsided and they
started getting along fantastically you see this wall went great until I left
for a few days you see being so small in such a large aquarium and having success
initially means that long term but I’m probably going to have success all I got
to do is keep them well-fed if I don’t all hell could possibly break loose and
that’s kind of what happened while I was gone this past weekend now these guys
are kind of just sucking around over in the corner right now I just fed them and
I was just messing around with the water flows and lots of lights on the tank so
they’re kind of stressed out right now however you can see that they will get
along just fine if they’re well fed but like I said they didn’t eat while I was
gone so as soon as I got home I fed them so of course over the next few weeks
these guys are gonna heal back up their fins will go back to normal and I’m
really excited about the fact that they’re simply getting along but a true
before and after you need some differences but with Asian Arowana they
take years to mature and get their coloration the coloration like all fish
are based on a number of factors though first and foremost genetics there’s you
can only feed or put a fish in certain environment but they’re only gonna get
so far depending on what type of genetics they have for example Frank
isn’t the best-looking flowerhorn so he probably has some pretty poor genetics
in him however he’s probably got the best personality in this entire gallery
and that’s why I love him and I think many of you guys love him however if
this guy was bred for his chins he’s a champion he’s got seven my fat little
Frank so of course genetics is gonna play a
role in how your fish look and but again there’s there’s nothing you could do
about that after you purchased the fish of course when it comes to Asian Arowana
you can make sure that you purchase from a reputable firm but there’s other
factors that we can have an effect on in terms of their coloration so for example
when I feed my discus I want their reds and oranges to come through fire more
and I can have a direct impact on that with their diet so when I make their
food I ensure I include things like paprika and a Stax ofin or however you
pronounce that you get the idea that’s certainly going to bring out a lot of
the reds but when it comes to herbivores like for example some African cichlids
one of the things you kind of want to focus on here is feeding them a
vegetable date based diet like spirulina which can help intensify their colors as
well so of course their genetics and diet are gonna play a massive role in
the overall coloration of their fish but the environment we put them in has an
even bigger impact believe it or not of course you want your fish to be happy we
need perimeters to be ideal for the fish and at the very least you want to make
sure there’s no ammonia or nitrates present nitrates are fine we’re gonna do
our water changes remove the nitrates as well as dissolved organics but this just
an insurer that the fish is happy and healthy now
we’ve gone over the next thing immensely in the past the actual layout of the
equator if you look at my angels we have a very high contrast with this fish
they look like they’re standing out tremendously I mean check it out
with that said some fish react differently to different colors of
backgrounds the darker the background a lot of fish will tend to try to
camouflage in with it darkening their color now with some fish you kind of
don’t want that so you’ll go with the lighter color and again this just comes
all comes back down to their environment now of course lighting plays a huge role
as well and depending on the color spectrum you’re using the intensity etc
your fish can look dramatically different depending on what you’re using
and that brings up the next point the one thing that we have no control over
or at least really can’t get into our aquariums properly or accurately is up
there somewheres behind the clouds the Sun now there of course there are a ton
of these ones here that truly can replicate sunlight and even grow plants
as well as coral and look absolutely amazing however there’s one thing that
they won’t do and that’s tan your fish yes tanning your fish which is extremely
common with Asian Arowana now when you look at a lot of red
arowana and you see that truly deep rich blood-red Arowana
coloration you think well that’s just great genetics and a great diet and of
course genetics and their environment and everything plays a role but they
don’t get to that coloration without actually tanning them which brings up
the point of how do you get all of your arowana to kind of look their best now
when it comes to blue base cross backs or really golds in general you kind of
want to put them in something called white tank treatment it’s a bear
completely white painted tank with a low water level this ensures that the fish
tries to blend into this white background which enhances its gold
coloration and then when you put it in a darker tank it tries to darken up and
all of that gold and blue Fuli shines through and they look
absolutely stunning this doesn’t work on a red arowana we look towards tanning
but how do you tan and arowana well the same thing that actually tans
us the UVA and UVB rays now some Asian Arowana Keepers when they are grooming
their era Juana’s try to put them out in outdoor facilities and that’s a lot of
times again why you see if you’ve ever seen Asian Arowana being farmed they’ll
be in outdoor ponds which is ideal for breeding however they’ll always look
absolutely stunning that’s simply because they’re exposed to the UV B and
UVA rays how can we replicate this in the home aquarium though well with
simple light bulbs this is a rep D Sun UVB 10 point o light the 10 point o
means 10% UVB 30% UVA the problem with these though is that it’s difficult to
penetrate water as well as glass or acrylic and now I’m using one point six
inch thick acrylic on this Aquarius this could be hard to penetrate plus it’s
four feet deep again difficult to penetrate that water surface none of
this is sponsored by the way is just simply a bulb that works for tanning so
we can simply keep the aquarium open top and put a bunch of these lights over top
of it starting off the tanning process slowly for a couple of hours a day for
you know a couple weeks slowly increasing it to say 12 hours a day and
even some go pretty dramatic and goes tanning 24 hours a day in my opinion
this will cause too much stress to the fish and potentially stop it from eating
it could become lethargic or – around the aquarium hurting itself ideally you
don’t want to exceed 12 hours a day which still is going to cause a
tremendous amount of algae but again the grooming process isn’t pretty I just
want to bring you along and give you an insight to it because when you see the
end result of an absolutely stunning Asian Arowana
that is tends to be five years of intense grooming on that fish so putting
these little bulbs over top of the aquarium is a
and it’s kind of a good idea but we’re really only tanning the top of the fish
which tends not to matter as much because we see the Asian Arowana ‘z from
the sides so of course I could figure out a way to kind of mount these to the
sides of the aquarium which is lined up with where the Asian Arowana typically
swim and I just go the entire length on both sides
however penetrating this 1.6 inch thick acrylic I’m not gonna get all of the UVB
rays through it simply because the UVB doesn’t travel as far as UVA so it’s not
going to be really effective but that doesn’t mean these types of bulbs don’t
work I just have to create some sort of an underwater housing now there are
Asian Arowana tanning bulbs that you could put inside your aquariums to tan
them but I’m not sure if I’m going to actually tan these guys because this
aquarium is always on video we’re always showing it and always talking about it
and I know that every video moving forward I’m gonna have to explain why
there’s bulbs inside the aquarium and I know that’s just gonna get frustrating
for myself as well as you guys so I don’t know we’ll see what happens but
what could I use these bulbs for could you use them to tan your fish and the
simple answer is yes you see Frank is a flower horn and he might not be the
best-looking flower horn and there’s only so much I could do about it however
tanning him can certainly intensify the red within him so if I click on one of
these lights it doesn’t look like it’s doing much to the fish it just looks
like a natural light bulb but it is emitting UVA and UVB lights he spends
most of his time up near the top so that is ideal over time 3 to 6 months he
definitely turned bright red but will he actually do it no but why not is it
unnatural not really this is happening in the wild of course and that’s why a
lot of the times wild caught fish look tremendously better than tank-raised
and I know many people will be offended and think it’s a natural and cool and I
understand I will probably see you someday out there with an umbrella over
a stream making sure the fish are protected by these Rays I’m kidding but
you get the idea this isn’t some that’s unnatural but doing it in the
aquarium for long periods of time can potentially cause a lot of stress to the
fish and I might not get the results that I’m looking for with the types of
bulbs that I have unless I truly kind of deconstruct this aquarium and have bulbs
on the inside all over the place which in my opinion kind of takes away from it
I think I’m just going to let them naturally progress over time otherwise
if I want to do it properly I take them out and have them in individual
aquariums I’ve thrown them properly and it’s just going to be next to impossible
in this tank and in the meantime I’m just gonna have an ugly-looking aquarium
so am I going to do it absolutely not is this something that you should do
probably not but it’s up to you if you want to do it it can cause damages to
your fish if abused and even yourself if you know looking into the light for long
periods of time of course it could potentially cause damages to your eyes
but whether or not I’ll be tanning my fish has been a question that I keep
getting repetitively so I’d only didn’t want to only cover it but I kind of
wanted to go over some information of it as well so we don’t have to come back to
it so that’s that I’d love to get your guys’s thoughts on tanning your fish or
what you think the best methods for improving the coloration of your fish
are getting the most out of your fish I do you feel like it’s diet environmental
factors do you feel like we’re simply missing out on the UVB and UVA rays of
the Sun or is it something else in the comments section below I’d love to hear
what your thoughts are and what you have had success with because a lot of the
times the comments section is simply the second half of the video and I know a
lot of people learn even more from there anyways guys I have a busy week ahead of
me so I hope you enjoyed today’s video I’d also like to thank you for watching
and if you join me in a couple days on Thursday I will have a new video for you

100 thoughts on “HOW TO increase fish coloration – with sun tanning?

  1. Well normally I'd say that you're right when it comes to light and penetration of water, but I see see enough rays even on the bottom of your tank.

  2. ummm…
    uvb is only thing u need or usually get from those lights… uva is nothin more then just heat any high watt light works for that. now buying one that has both in one bulb is risky cause it emits lots of radiation… which seems a fair fact cause uvb bulb does emit heat at all… so one can only think what happens to mercury gas inside when it start frying from heat (UVA). and thats the reason most reptile keepers have two separate lights for both rays. dont know why im saying this..maybe cause uvb n uva was put together in this video to much…

    on the other hand you put it on franks tank and turned it up saying it will color up.. and you did put it on top of the glass (plastic whatever) LOL.. when u r in the green house do you get tan? if u look throw the window do you get tan? even to have an idea it might work throw acrylic…yeah not happening…

  3. If you start the tanning process you'll have to face the fact that it will be something you will always have to do,right? Never-ending?

  4. Add multi NAN lights to your tank. Keep on 24 hours a day! Feed raw market shrimp soaked in Vita-chem. If you feed live crickets, gutload them with food pellets, etc.

  5. Hey friend I'm just wondering do You have to have a permit to own a Asian arowana fish sorry for asking you this question but I'm new to the fish Hobby.

  6. I think it's a bit of all three. Food, uvA/B, and habitat. My personal opinion as an ex breeder. P.s. I love your channel. And Frank is looking good to me.

  7. Hey Joey. I'm glad you enjoyed your time at Congressional Aquarium. I've been going to the store for 30 years.

  8. Ive recently got a baby albino ascar with lovely orange colouring… after watching todays video, did i hear you say feed your cichlids fruit??

  9. loooove those fresh water sting rays!! Also just gotta say, the one any only "fish nightmare" I have ever had was with arowanas… lol the experience totally turned me off them! Yours sure are beautiful though.

  10. I Own Two Boa Constrictors And I Use A Similar UVB & UVA Bulb In Their Planted Bio-Active Vivarium.
    Interestingly Enough They Don’t Require The Light To Be Healthy; They Get Everything They Need From Their Food, Similar To Your Arowana.
    But I Feel That It Makes Things As Natural For Them As Possible And Aids Their Pigment.
    It Probably Also Encourages Natural Behaviour.
    These Are Just My Thoughts.
    Two Biologically Different Animals, I Know.
    *But Both Have Scales And Pigment Lol.

  11. Puts Arowana on Frying Pan
    "It seems to be darkening! Its working!"
    Edit: No Arowanas were harmed in the making of this comment

  12. Joey if you want the natural sunlight why not use it ? Install a sky light in your roof above the 2000G. Then you shouldn't the natural light coming into the aquarium during the day…

  13. How bout you give them a special treatment at a tanning salon ?? arowana squaaaad ??? btw frank is beautiful. There's nothing wrong about his looks tho haha ??

  14. Joey. I have seen one amazing firehorn…how can I send you the photos and video? you got to see him.

  15. I think that introducing UVA/B rays is something that we really have to consider when keeping fish; it’s something that’s taken the reptile hobby by storm in the past few years and it’s now spreading into other areas of interest.

    I would say with certainty, however, that shining any bulb at the side of any animal should not be recommended. They have evolved such that the Sun’s rays, which always come from above, do not damage their eyes from above (hence eyebrows and eye ridges etc.), so shining light into their eyes is both unnatural and dangerous in that it can cause blindness.

  16. That's happens with my Oscars if I don't feed them for a couple of days they are all torn up, idk of this is normal for Oscars

  17. Hej Joey i have seen in Thailand that some use stropelight to inhance the color but he onley had red and they whas fireengine red?
    Did not know if its tanning
    her sad its
    Whas lightning emitation can you tell us anything about that is is tanning og something different

  18. I noticed that petsmart sells bulbs for color enhancement and plant growth. I decided to purchase both and see how they both do. I had notice the color enhancing bulb along with a good diet does seem to help quite a bit. However it didn't do so much for my plants so I then I switched to the plant bulb. After a month I noticed it helped more than the other, but then i got curiouse what if I used both. The plants are growing good and so is the algae. Although most dont like algae ive noticed it grows in green and not brown and my herbivores like it better. Overall I think using both bulbs works the best.

  19. If you want natural light build a pond for summer, sky light would make his other tanks grow algae everywhere. Save yourself some time with uva bulbs or whatever they are

  20. will this be possible if is to put some sort reflective like mirror perhaps on the base to reflect the uvb / uva from the bottom so you could tan the fish from top and bottom ?

  21. My expenses are already too high. No need to add water soluble tanning lotion to my list of things to buy. ≈≈≈≈ ><(·_)

  22. Heres an idea. Get 12 individual light fixtures. Put them on individual timers. Have the lights perform some kind of cycle, were at noon time all the lights are on to mimic the brightest hour of the day and at midnight all the lights will be off to mimic the darkest hour of night. Giving the perfect affect of day and night. That way the fish can get used to it without causing too much stress.

  23. Also something that I cant explain with almost all freshwater fish. Use black walls/backgrounds and black gravel or sand if possible. Somehow fish can slightly change their tint to help blend in with their surroundings. It definitely helps reduce fish stress as well.

  24. Just an idea. It's hard sometimes to see the size of the fish. I know the color of the fish and the background, and the plants are nice to see, so don't stop showing that. But putting something in the tank that's familiar in size to everyone would really help to display the size of the fish. Not sure how I'd do it, so that's why I'll leave it to the expert inventor. Best of luck with everything you do Joey. Keep it up.

  25. Oscar Oscar Oscar Oscar Oscar Oscar Oscar we want tank full of Oscars You know you want to you know we want you to just do it make us happy give us what we want anyways keep on keeping on love Kayley

  26. Not sure if it's A or B, but UV light is bad for acrylic. Clouds it and otherwise starts its break-down. Probably take years, but it's still something to consider.

  27. How about adding a couple Siamese Tigerfish to the big tank. I see them as tank mates here. Not sure on the legality in Canada?

  28. Fiber optics? Not sure what material would work best with transmission, but if you're looking for moving anything within the electromagnetic spectrum to easily controllable locations, optical fibers (both end and side emitting) aren't too absurdly expensive. Plus, have you ever seen light shined through a piece of frosted glass? Just food for thought…

  29. i have oscars and they get extremely light in color two extremely dark in color for no apparent reason does anyone know why and how to keep them better colors without Sun Tanning I don't want to deal with the algae love your videos man

  30. I know the radions have a UV setting that you have control of to ramp up and ramp down. Would that be able to be used to in order to achieve the tanning? Just a thought I'd put out there.

  31. I just put my guppies in my outdoor pond tub for the summer. I bring the best inside at fall time and leave the not so great looking fellas to try to brave our horribly vicious Florida winter. The culls that make it through the colder water temps rejoin the over winter crew in early spring. That’s my plan and I’ll have to say that these outdoor fish look absolutely amazing after being in the sun for a month or two.

  32. The lightest one with the pinkest tail looks like my fermale betta. I only have a 16 gallon tank so arowanas wil get to big. So I have fermale betta's instead bc they look a lot like arowana.

  33. Thank you joye… Realy Waiting for this video from last 6 months…
    Still if i want to tann my aros.. Any other light you can prefer?

  34. my fish get a bit of sun, when the sun in the morning goes up, i get some hours of sunlight with my big windows 🙂
    looks really nice, but i never thought it makes a difference for the fish ;p

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