Pete Giwojna

Dear Haynes:

Yes, sir, a well-filtered 30-gallon aquarium should be able to accommodate all of your decorative shrimp, goby and two pairs of Sunbursts without any problems.

However, if possible, a 30 gallon tall aquarium would be preferable for your seahorses to a 30 gallon long aquarium. If you can manage it, Haynes, I would suggest the 30 gallon Extra-High aquarium by All Glass, with the following dimensions: 24"L x 12"W x 24"H. Tanks that are significantly shorter than 20 inches tall are sometimes prone to problems with gas bubble syndrome.

Otherwise, the 30-gallon aquarium you are considering would certainly be a nice upgrade, and if it is the same height as the seahorse tank you’re using now, I would go ahead and make the move to the larger aquarium regardless. But it would be great if you could upgrade to a tank that was taller as well as bigger in volume.

Unless you’re planning on keeping live corals, 190 W is more lighting than you really need for a seahorse setup, so feel free to tone it down a bit if you like. As you know, when it comes to lighting, seahorses do not have any special requirements other than the fact that most species prefer low to moderate light levels rather than excessively bright light. They have a corrugated retina especially rich in rods, which gives them excellent visual acuity under twilight conditions and low light levels in general. But this does not mean that they shun bright light, just that they appreciate shady retreats as well as brightly illuminated areas.

In actual practice, seahorses will do well under any type of lighting you prefer — from metal halides to power compacts or VHO lighting to daylight fluorescent tubes to ambient room light — providing shaded areas are available to them and overheating does not become a problem.

For all intents and purposes, you really can’t go wrong no matter what lighting system you chose as long as you provide both shaded areas where your seahorses can escape from light altogether and well-lit areas where they can bathe in bright light as they please. You will find your seahorses will move into and out of the light often, seeking the comfort level that suits them at the moment.

Best of luck with your Sunburst, Haynes!

Happy Trails!
Pete Giwojna

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