Many retailers of aquarium products are slashing prices on nearly their entire inventory. I just picked up a light for my 80-gallon planted tank at a very reasonable price, especially for a high output T5 lamp.
And I’m seeing deals everywhere. I know times are very tight for a lot of people, but if you have some extra cash and you’ve been planning to make a purchase, you should consider shopping around.
When you do decide to buy, consider purchasing from your local fish store, as well. There really is no substitute for the knowledge an experienced fish store owner or staff person bring to your purchasing experience.
Also, look for deals on used equipment. It seems like there has been a wave of people getting rid of old equipment at the end of the last few summers. If you keep your eyes peeled, you might snatch a great price on a complete setup or a normally expensive piece of equipment.
Grow the Hobby and Save a Buck
I think there is an attitude of indifference that is building around keeping certain aspects of the hobby going. Many aquarists seem only interested in what they get directly out of the hobby.
But this hobby has always been based on participation from its members. We get out what we put in. Without fish clubs and hobby activists pushing the bounds of what can be kept in a private aquarium, we wouldn’t be where we are today.
When times get tough, aquarists have to get creative. I also think aquarists need to get out there and promote the hobby.
One of the best ways to do this is join a local fish club. Clubs are often able to work out deals with local retailers because of their clout and ability to organize purchases.
This is a great way to support the hobby and get more for your aquarium dollar at the same time.
The hobby will need dedicated members supporting it in the future if it is to remain as vibrant and important as it is today. Without the knowledge base aquarists have access to through their local fish clubs, fish stores and through the industry that supports aquarists, the hobby might not be able to sustain itself.
The best remedy is for established aquarists to take leadership roles and do what they can to expand the hobby.
Get Back in the Water
If you’re a long-time hobbyist but you’ve dropped out of the scene for a while, now is a great time to get back in. Aquarium equipment is cheap and the hobby has reached a level of sophistication only dreamed of in the past.
The best part, however, is that you have the opportunity to contribute in a very meaningful way to one of the great hobbies in existence today. Very few pastimes offer what aquariumkeeping does.
We get to be naturalists, scientists, artists and conservationists all at once. I’ve learned so much being in this hobby, and a lot of what I’ve learned is directly relatable to many other areas of my life.
Sure, it takes extra effort and money, but look how much we spend on other forms of entertainment without batting an eye. How often do we look back at these frivolous expenses and wish we had saved our money? I’ve never felt that way about anything I’ve done or anything I’ve purchased for the aquarium hobby.
Some hobbies aren’t worthwhile. They don’t add anything new, they don’t require us to learn and they don’t require anything from us. Many hobbies are just forms of entertainment.
The aquarium hobby is completely different. Aquarists give more, but we get more in return. This hobby can be whatever we want it to be. We just have to put the time in and make sure our hobby grows.