There's a high chance if you're reading this then you're new to the marine hobby, you may already have a freshwater tank or just be looking to dive straight into the fascinating world of marine aquariums. It's our opinion that a marine tank is no harder to keep than a freshwater aquarium. The basics are ultimately the same, keep your water quality good and the fish and coral will take care of themselves.

We give a lot of advice on starting up new tanks in fact we have a separate blog "Starting a saltwater marine aquarium" that you can read if you haven't already to get you fired up.

Now ... lets talk fish for beginners

Ideal starting fish for beginners (our top 5)

There are many fish available in this hobby and there's plenty of marine fish to choose from as a beginner, there is going to be some fish you simply cannot have due to tank size (unless you made the sensible choice and bought a whopper, but the chances are as a beginner you started fairly small)

You will find a lack of damsels in our starter list, these are often sold by some shops as a starter fish, and while they are hardy they can also be very territorial  and aggressive so we try and avoid selling these to our customers as it may prevent you adding other fish down the line.


#1 The Common Clownfish ( aka Nemo ) The obvious choice of starter fish. The common clown, these hardly little fish are very often tank bred which is a great place to start. The clownfish doesn't need a lot of swimming space because they tend to stick to a small area of swim space, they a usually a striking orange and white colour (other variations are out there) and they are a good price thanks to the success of tank breeding. They don't have to have an anemone to be happy so don't feel you need to purchase one.

Blue Green Chromis

#2 Blue Green Chromis okay we know despite what we said above this is technically a damselfish this is a great fish to add to any aquarium, fairly peaceful and a great colour at a low price. Usually we find these are best kept in small groups of odd numbers they also help encourage more shy fish out of the rockwork.


#3 Cardinalfish, these come usually in two varieties in our store, either the red spotted or the black and white version. These are peaceful fish which are generally easy to keep and who accept a wide variety of foods. They are also usually tank bred so more resilient to the problems associated with enclosed water spaces.


#4 Firefish another peaceful fish that’s pretty to look at is the fire fish, they come in different colours which allows you to add a splash of variation in your tank. They have a great personality our only recommendation for them for beginners is that you have a mesh or solid lid on your aquarium because they do occasionally like to jump out.

Bi Colour Blenny

#5 Bi-Colour blenny, these fish have amazing characters, they perch on the rockwork and peek at you swimming out for food when it's added to the aquarium. They have a striking orange tale with a darker body

Of course there are many more options of fish available, we do advise that beginners get good advice and we are available by email to discuss your requirements if you would like advice on stocking your tank.