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Books Reviewed - Recommended Marine Titles I


Here is a list of some books (and not only) that I have recently read.


1. H.DEBELIUS & H.A.BAENSCH  "MARINE ATLAS" by MERGUS Publications, Published in 1997, 1213 pages.  A remarkable volume which begins with a wealth of information about keeping marine species successfully. Although in some topics the book is a bit outdated, still the information included is correct and will allow the reader to start his marine "venture" correctly. Then starts the main Atlas which lists some of the marine species (for example, triggers and lionfhishes - two very common species in the hobby are not included). While reading it very carefully there is no mention of a second volume of the "Marine Atlas". After searching many on line bookstores I couldn't fins any such reference. The photos and information on the marine species included in this marine atlas are - naturally - superb. This is guaranteed by the two experienced authors, nevertheless sometimes you are nicely surprised by the quality of the photos in this volume. All in all it is a great book for reference and identification purposes and is a nice companion to the three volumes of the freshwater Atlas. If you can't find the second volume it is recommended to opt for another Atlas since a "half-Atlas" is of very limited use.

2. M.A.MOE Jr. "THE MARINE AQUARIUM HANDBOOK - BEGINNER TO BREEDER" by GREEN TURTLE Publications, Published in 1992, 320 pages. This is a classic. A book which should be included in the library of every serious marine fish keeper. Actually it is an "updated" version of the older classic but the information is always first class, accurate and checked by the author. Don't look for fancy photos in this book, there aren't many. The ones you will see are used to highlight the points or show the application of the information given. The first man to spawn the clownfish in captivity has given his best in this book. All matters are thoroughly covered and in most of them the newest information is inserted in the old text which allows the reader to make a comparison between the present and the past (and understand the tremendous developments during these years). The text is easy to understand and doesn't require an academic degree. It is a book written by a scientist - hobbyist for other hobbyists and it definitely serves this purpose.

3. DR. BURGESS'S "ATLAS OF MARINE AQUARIUM FISHES" by TFH PUBLICATIONS, 3rd Edition, 786 pages. Packed with more than 4000 photos this massive volume includes almost every tropical (and not only) marine fish known. The photos are surprisingly good and there are usually more than one photo per species. The information for each species is rather limited (in the form of symbols) and leaves much to be desired but (as the author states in the introduction) the purpose of this Atlas is to help the hobbyist identify his fish. A very good alternative to book nr.1 (highly recommended if vol.2 of Baensch Marine Atlas can't be found).

4. DISK MILLS "THE INTERPET ENCYCLOPEDIA OF THE MARINE AQUARIUM" by Salamander Books Limited. Being an African cichlid - addicted hobbyist means that your library will be loaded with books on Africans. It also means you like colors and fishes. Well, this book is meant for every hobbyist who has the same likes. Full color detailed pictures of many fish available in the tropical marine hobby. Sometimes, when I browse this book I think of giving it a try. Every information is neatly arranged and everything is covered (from behavior to feeding and tank space). Very useful and detailed information on how to effectively set up a marine tank - even a non - tropical one.

5. RUDIE H. KUITER "GUIDE TO SEA FISHES OF AUSTRALIA" by NEW HOLLAND Publications. A small format guide with a big content. Over 950 species described, every species with a full color picture, a location map, and the basic information about its habits. As I said, I am a Malawi fan not a marine one. Yet, I have spent hours enjoying this book.

6. JOHN H. TOLLOCK "YOUR FIRST MARINE AQUARIUM" by BARRON'S. A another small format guide which is one of the few books that stands by its title. It has all the basic information for a novice to start his marine aquarium but it is not enough to support him in solving advanced problems - but this is not its aim. There are photos of several species and a compatibility table which is handy and very useful. The author believes in the "keep it simple" approach (which I like very much) and it seems that I will follow his basic ideas when I will start my own tank.

 7. RON SHIMEK "THE CORAL REEF AQUARIUM" by HOWELL BOOK HOUSE Publications. A nice book which covers the basics on creating and maintaining a coral reef aquarium. Of course, a coral reef tank is much more difficult than a fish - only marine tank which means that this book could never cover everything in its 125 pages. I know of books double that size dealing with parts of reef keeping only. However, you will get the basic principles that you have to know and I think that you will be able to start your first reef tank by following the guidelines listed in it. Surely, as you advance you will need a more detailed book but this small book can keep you company during your early steps. Very nice photos and descriptions of quite a few invertebrates, fish and algae.

More books in next page...

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