If you’re setting up an aquarium for a cold-water fish, there are a few essentials items you’ll need before you can bring them home.

So you’re thinking about taking buying some cold-water fish? They’re Australia’s most popular pet fish and it’s not hard to see why. There’s a variety of beautiful species on offer and they have a calming presence that makes them a lovely addition to any home. Before you think about bringing your new pets home, there a few things you’ll need to set up their environment. Here’s everything you’ll need.


  • Tank with a lid
    We recommend you buy the biggest tank you can manage so your fish have an inviting environment. Talk to one of our friendly Petbarn staff members to find the right fit for your fish and your home.
  • Filtration
    Managing the quality of your pets’ environment is hugely important. The filtration system will pull some of the decaying matter out of the water to keep the tank clean.
  • Air pump
    Your fish need oxygen to survive and as they grow they will need more. Choosing the right air pump to match your tank is important to ensuring your fish have the best environment. You can find a great range of air pumps that add air and bring a cool look to your fish tank.
  • Air stone
    An air stone is a great match for your air pump and will ensure your fish have lots of oxygen.
  • Gravel and gravel siphon
    Gravel is a very popular choice as the foundations of a fish tank as it’s much easier to clean than sand. It also comes in lots of different sizes and colours so if you’re setting up a tank for a child, they can have fun choosing the material. A gravel siphon will help you clean the vacuum.
  • Plants – live and artificial
    If you don’t have a green thumb, we recommend a mix of living and artificial plants. The living plants will create a natural environment for your fish, while you’ll enjoy the low-maintenance perks of the artificial plants.
  • Light hood and bulb
    A light will make the tank environment more inviting and help the live plants survive.
  • Ornaments
    Have a bit of fun and make your fish’s new home inviting and interesting for them. You can find all sorts of options for decorating your tank at your local Petbarn store.
  • Backing paper
    Use this to create an interesting background for your fish tank. Feel free to get creative with this and use an image of a coral reef or underwater scene.

Health and feeding

  • Fish food
    Different varieties of fish have different needs, so check in with your friendly Petbarn team to find the right match for your fish.
  • Water conditioner
    Tap water can contain some chemicals that can be hard on fish, so be sure to buy some water conditioner to keep them happy and healthy.
  • Treatments for common problems
    It’s good to be prepared for the ailments that can affect your fish. Having treatments, such as White Spot Remedy, on hand means that you can quickly help your fish if they are under the weather.
  • Keep a book on fish care handy
    That way, you’ll have all the information you need right at your fingertips.


  • Magnetic tank glass cleaner
    Picking up one of these will help you keep the front of your fish tank clean without having to empty the whole thing – easy!
  • Water testing kit
    This will help you keep an eye on the pH levels of your tank water and assist you in working out when to clean the tank.
  • Algae-cleaning tools
    An algae scrubber is a great way to keep your fish tank clean. It’s similar to the scourer you would use in your kitchen and will cut through algae build up.
  • Bucket
    When it comes time to give your tank a full clean, you’ll need to have a bucket handy for your fish to hang out in while their home is being cleaned.
  • Nets
    You’ll need a net to catch your fish and put them in the bucket when it comes time to give the tank a good clean.

Visit your local Petbarn to find a great range of products to care for your fish, and chat to a team members to find out more.