Yes, sir, the Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Program is definitely the reference you have been looking for to make sure you get started out on the right foot with your seahorse project, and I would be honored to help make your daughter’s dream of having a seahorse tank of her own a reality.
Although the seahorse guides you will find in print can be helpful for a beginner, they are really quite limited since they cannot be easily updated and therefore quickly become outdated and less useful and relevant. You will find the training manual for the Ocean Rider seahorse training course, which is updated regularly, to be much more useful and informative.
For one thing, Chris, it consists of several hundred pages of text with more than 250 full-color illustrations, making it far more comprehensive than any of the seahorse guidebooks you will ever find.
Secondly, sir, it is based on Ocean Rider Mustangs and Sunbursts (Hippocampus erectus) exclusively and will provide you with the in-depth knowledge and training you and your daughter need in order to care for these amazing aquatic equines properly in your home. It will explain how to optimize an aquarium to provide ideal conditions for the Mustangs and Sunbursts, which are by far the best seahorses for beginners to keep. I will attach a file to this e-mail for you to download and save on your computer, Chris, so that you and your daughter can go through it at your leisure, which explains more about Mustangs and Sunbursts and why they are so well suited for first-time seahorse keepers.
Best of all, it includes extensive photo galleries of Mustangs and Sunbursts respectively, including dozens and dozens of color photographs of each of these types, all taken by their proud owners in their home aquariums. That will give you an your daughter a really good idea of exactly what the Sunburst and Mustangs are like, and whether or not you would like to set up a seahorse tank that would be ideal for them. You and your daughter can look through this document together and perhaps get some inspiration and good ideas about what your own seahorse tank should be like when it’s up and running.
An aquarium of 35-40 gallons would be a good choice for a project such as yours, Chris. The recommended stocking density for large tropical seahorses, such as Ocean Rider Mustangs and Sunbursts (Hippocampus erectus), is one pair per 10 gallons of water, with a minimum tank size of 30 gallons. In other words, an aquarium of 35-40 gallons with an efficient filtration system can easily accommodate several of the seahorses – perhaps two mated pairs, if you and your daughter would like the seahorses to breed – and still provide you with a comfortable margin for error as beginners. At the same time, it is not so large that it would be prohibitively expensive or take up too much room in your home to be a welcome addition to your decor.
When it comes to finding a suitable aquarium, sir, I would be happy to suggest some good options for you in that regard that would be quite economical.
For starters, I would suggest a tall 37-gallon all glass aquarium from Aqueon that would make an outstanding environment for two mated pairs of Mustangs or Sunbursts and that would also provide you and your daughter with a really comfortable margin for error as a first-time seahorse keeper, Chris.
If you want to start out with a basic set up for keeping two pairs of Mustangs or Sunbursts, Chris, perhaps the most ideal aquarium system I could suggest would be to obtain an Aqueon 37-gallon Aquarium (Item # 10037, UPC Code 015905100373) with black trim (30.3″L x 12.5″W x 22.8″H), equip it with a simple, standard, off-the-shelf glass cover and an off-the-shelf strip reflector with an ordinary florescent daylight bulb, and then fit it with a suitable Aqueon hang-on-the-back external power filter, as described below.
In short, Chris, the basic aquarium system that I would recommend in your case is an Aqueon 37-gallon Aquarium (Item # 10037, UPC Code 015905100373) with black trim (30.3″L x 12.5″W x 22.8″H) equipped with an Aqueon QuietFlow external filter, a simple glass aquarium cover such as the Versa-Top Hinged Glass Top by Aqueon, and an ordinary strip reflector with a fluorescent bulb, which we would then cycle using SeaChem Stability. That’s a very economical set up that can be very successful as a seahorse tank and that is easy to set up and pretty foolproof once it’s up and running.
All that remains is to explain where you can obtain these items if they are not available from your local fish stores:
1) One Aqueon 37-gallon Aquarium (Item # 10037, UPC Code 015905100373) with black trim (30.3″L x 12.5″W x 22.8″H).
Any of your local fish stores will be able to order the 37-Gallon Aqueon Aquarium with black trim for you, Chris, for a price of about $80,
2) One 30″ All-Glass Versa-Top Hinged Glass Top, which fits the Aqueon 37-gallon aquarium perfectly.
The Aqueon or All-Glass Versa-Top Model 30″ will fit the Aqueon 37-gallon Aquarium perfectly, and if you cannot get one from your local fish stores, then you can order one online from Drs. Foster and Smith at the following website for cost of about $20, Chris. Just copy the following URL, paste it in your web browser, and press the “Enter” key, and it will take you to the right page to order the All-Glass Versa-Top Model 30″ (CD-930819):
3) One 30″ length Aqueon Fluorescent Strip Light in Black with fluorescent bulb, which fits the Aqueon 37-gallon aquarium perfectly.
If you cannot get in a Aqueon Fluorescent Strip Light in Black from one of your local fish stores, you can purchase a 30″ Aqueon Fluorescent Strip Light in Black that will fit your Aqueon 37-Gallon Aquarium perfectly from Petco for about $35, Chris. Just copy the following URL, paste it in your web browser, and press the “Enter” key, and it will take you to the right page on the Petco website where you can order a 30″ Aqueon Fluorescent Strip Light in Black online:
4) One Aqueon QuietFlow Power Filter, Model 50, which is is rated for aquariums of up to 50 gallons and puts out 250 gallons per hour, which means it will turn over your 37-gallon aquarium about six times every hour – just right for a seahorse tank! The Aqueon QuietFlow Power Filter will provide additional water movement and extra filtration for your Aqueon 37-Gallon aquarium. It is an external, hang-on-the-back filter with a waterfall return that will provide the tank with mechanical, chemical, biological, and stationary wet/dry filtration, as well as good surface agitation and oxygenation.
If you cannot find the Aqueon QuietFlow Power Filter Model 50 (CD-76962) at one of your local fish stores, Connor, you can purchase one online from Drs. Foster and Smith for cost of about $23. Just copy the following URL, paste it in your web browser, and press the “Enter” key, and it will take you to the right page on the Drs. Foster and Smith to order the Aqueon QuietFlow Power Filter Model 50 (CD-76962):
Okay, Chris, that would be a very effective, yet economical aquarium system for you that could easily support two mated pairs of Mustangs or Sunbursts.
I would suggest that you look over the information I provided above regarding a suitable aquarium and accessories for your seahorse project, and then download the attached document with the additional information and photo galleries on Mustangs and Sunbursts and go through that material with your daughter.
If, after you have had a chance to go over the material on the Mustangs and Sunbursts, you and your daughter feel they would be a good choice for your seahorse project, and the aquarium equipment I have outlined above is within your allotted budget, please let me know and we can proceed from there.
If you and your daughter do indeed decide to proceed with your seahorse project, I will then provide you with a copy of the training manual and we can begin the seahorse training course. All newbies and first-time and time customers are required to complete the Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Program to my satisfaction before they can be certified and authorized to order any seahorses, Chris, so that would be the logical next step towards achieving your goal.
Best wishes with all your fishes, sir!
Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Tech Support