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Posts Tagged ‘hobby’

postheadericon Many people would not consider a fish to be a “real” pet, but keeping tropical fish is a pleasurable hobby for families around the world

Many people would not consider a fish to be a “real” pet, but keeping tropical fish is a pleasurable hobby for families around the world. It’s also great for the person who is allergic to fur but stills wants some kind of company at home. If you are a complete beginner then beginning with a goldfish would be your best start, but if you want a little more of a challenge then tropical fish are the way to go.

Most people choose salt water fish because there are more choices and typically more brightly coloured fish then among freshwater fish, and it’s much simpler than having a reef aquarium. There is also an aesthetic appeal of keeping a tropical fish tank in your home because you get to design and decorate your tank. Tropical fish don’t tie you down to a lot of expenses after you set up the aquarium and buy the fish; it should cost you around $25 a year to feed a fish. But what most people appreciate most is that you don’t have to walk them, wash them, groom them, play catch with them or take them in for check-ups.

But that doesn’t mean that you can just put your fish in a tank and walk away. Tropical fish do require more care than a plant; you must know how to change the water, clean the tank, and what to feed them. A little research will help you keep your aquarium free from algae blooms and snail infestations. An absolute necessity for tropical fish is a tank heater, and you may also find a tank thermometer to be very helpful. The most commonly used heater for aquariums is a submersible heater, which you should position where it will circulate the most water, so it can spread out the heat. The thermometer should also be a submersed one because they are usually more accurate and if you are keeping tropical fish the temperature of the tank water is of the utmost importance.

As with any new hobby or endeavour, it is important to learn about the needs of the different species of tropical fish before you invite them to share your home. But with a little advance planning and preparation, you will soon come to see that keeping fish as pets can be pleasing and quite fun to do!

postheadericon Keeping healthy chickens is so much easier than you might have thought

Keeping healthy chickens is so much easier than you might have thought. There is such a wealth of information available that is so easy to access at the touch of a button and with the recent renewed worldwide interest, chicken keeping really is something to be experienced and the pleasure of eating fantastic tasting free range eggs laid by your own hens is not to be underestimated.

For a long time keeping chickens was not so much a hobby as a necessity, people lived on small holdings or farms, or were too remote from a store that they could not simply pop out to buy eggs. With eggs being so versatile and playing such an important role in our diet, keeping chickens was just something that you did and nobody paid much attention to it.

In these fast furious times we have moved away from taking simple pleasures in life but are gradually coming back around to realising that we have been missing out.

With intense chicken farming and the mass production of eggs needed to supply our constant demand, the industry really does not go anyway to cater for more the most basic needs of laying poultry’s welfare and this has been reflected in the quality and taste of eggs.

There is absolutely nothing to compare with the taste of organic, free range eggs laid by your own poultry. It has been shown that they contain one third less cholesterol and at least one quarter less saturated fat than caged produced hens eggs for a start.

If you are serious about keeping chickens, you will need to be able to address their specific needs but, they are very simple creatures and it only takes minimal effort on your part to keep them healthy, happy and producing tasty eggs.

The most important consideration is housing, not just the size of the coop but also where you decide to position it too. Chickens are susceptible to extremes of heat and cold so, to be able to supply adequate ventilation or heat depending on the weather is helpful. Obviously they need to be dry and protected from other elements such as wind or possibly snow. Above all, they need to feel safe from predators.

Your chickens will rely on you to provide them with the sustenance they need to produce good eggs and to enable them to maintain a healthy lifestyle. So, by giving them a balanced diet with the correct amount of proteins, vitamins and minerals this is easy to achieve.

Chicken keeping can be extremely rewarding, you have the benefits of a constant supply of fresh organic eggs that not only taste better than eggs bought from your local store with extra added health benefits, also you can be proud because you are keeping healthy chickens that are able to endlessly provide eggs for you.

Building a hen house can be simple and is great fun when you are given the correct information. They are practical, easy to assemble and will save you a fortune.

There are dozens of poultry related websites that claim to offer visitors great hen housing plans, but few sadly seem to offer little more than a single basic design. However one of the best chicken house design websites online that has been endorsed by hundreds of chicken breeders and owners worldwide so far contains a wealth of chicken data and related information that is well worth reviewing. (http://www.chickenhousekit.com)

postheadericon Reverend lorenzo langstroth, the man who pioneered modern day beehives, created his original beehive design based on the idea that bee products could be more easily harvested from a spatially constructed box with frames

Reverend Lorenzo Langstroth, the man who pioneered modern day beehives, created his original beehive design based on the idea that bee products could be more easily harvested from a spatially constructed box with frames. Since that time in the mid 1800’s others have manipulated that thought into different versions of the original model.

But one model known as the top bar hive, is different. While still using Langstroth’s concept of ‘bee space’, it uses a frameless design that only makes use of it’s top bars – hence the name. Is this design better than the others? There are pros and cons to this type of hive which serious beekeepers need to know.

The design of the top bar is probably the most simple. It requires the least amount of evenly measured elements. In it’s most simplistic form it is a box with some top bars inserted at the top. It can be constructed from different types of materials, and can even use recycled elements.

Plans are available for the do-it-yourselfer who may wish to build one on their own. Alternatively, because of the easy design these hives can be found for purchase and are readily affordable to those on a modest budget. This makes this hive attractive to those who are just looking into beekeeping as a side hobby.

Top bar hives will allow you to collect the maximum amount of wax. Because the honeycombs hang loosely, the entire piece can be cut across and removed during a harvest without scraping. This makes for easy seasonal harvesting, and a lot of wax for consumables such as soaps, candles, cosmetics, and furniture polish.

Because so much effort is used by the bees to reconstruct the interior of the hives, the honey production takes a hit. Top bar hives will not yield the same amount of honey you can get with a design like the Langstroth.

Additionally, with no sides to the pull out frames the construction of the honeycombs can be unpredictable. Occasionally the bees will keep building and attach to the sides of the box. They may also create an interior hive that connects several bars together making it harder to pull up a single frame. This is known as cross combing.

Later revisions to the Top Bar beehives have worked to correct or minimize these downfalls, but the design is not completely free of this issue. Regular maintenance and supervision will be the best remedy to insure proper honeycomb formation before things get out of sync.

To recap, if you are new to beekeeping and working with a budget, top bar beekeeping may be the right place for you to start. You will get some honey, but also expect a hefty amount of wax as well. It may be a little more effort to keep the hives in proper working order, but in the end you can still enjoy all the honey and wax the hive has to offer.

postheadericon Aquatic plants do carry the other half of the marine ecosystem, and are good additions to aquariums simply because they make the marine life equation complete

Aquatic plants do carry the other half of the marine ecosystem, and are good additions to aquariums simply because they make the marine life equation complete. But there are good signs lately which indicate that these plants are now used for more than just equating the animal-plant balance in an aquatic community. If you are interested in purchasing freshwater aquarium plants for your aquarium, then you might find this information quite useful.

Floaters
Floaters are a common choice in aquariums, because they add that style and elegance aside from the balance that they provide in the entire aquarium. Floaters, as the name suggests, thrive at the surface of the aquarium with their roots “floating” in the water, and are, by technical name, floating plants. One good example of a floater is the Fairy Moss, or the An Driccia.

Rhizomes
These plants are commonly described as having thick stems that stretch out inside the fish tank horizontally, with the leaves sprouting evenly at the stem. They are made to “run” over the substrate, much like how a normal plant grows on land. The Anubias and the African Fern are the commonly used rhizomes for aquariums. Aquarists start growing these plants by attaching them to the driftwood, and they spread along the substrate all by themselves.

Rosettes
These plants are characterized as looking like crowns, with roots that grow underneath them. These kinds of plants are very ornamental for a freshwater aquarium plant, because they present a shortened stem axis that tends to spread over its leaves beautifully. The downside is that they tend to need a good amount of maintenance and care. Some good examples of Rosettes are the Amazon Sword and the Sagittaria.

Stems
They are called this way because of their general appearance, which basically looks like a stem that is firmly rooted into the substrate. The leaves that can come in paired and multiple varieties, are found at the stem’s nodes.

Other Notable Aquatic Plants
The Java moss may well be considered as one of the most common aquatic plants. This is because it has a high tolerance rate for varied water pH levels, and can grow relatively fast, which makes it the ideal plant for beginners.

The Water Wisteria is a plant that can also grow quite quickly. It is a good plant to use in aquariums because aside from its aesthetic function as a plant, it also helps to keep the algae levels of the aquarium low. Be careful of the water nutrient sucking capability of this plant, though.

Cryptocoryne Becketti is a plant that can pose a challenge to the more experienced hobbyist. It is an amphibious plant, meaning it can grow well regardless if it is on land or underwater (but for its underwater survivability purposes, we shall still call this an aquatic plant). Like Rosettes, it’s a very good ornamental plant, as it gives a dazzling array of different colors, but it only works for those who are able to raise it well.

postheadericon Whether your dog is a few years old or a little puppy, there will be a time when you may have to go away from the town and you may need a substitute to look after your adorable pet

Whether your dog is a few years old or a little puppy, there will be a time when you may have to go away from the town and you may need a substitute to look after your adorable pet. Unfortunately, you cannot accompany your pet everywhere therefore, it leaves you the only option to find a quality professional pet sitter who can take care of your pet while the time you are away from town. Where can you find a pet sitter? What types of pet sitter services are available? If all these questions bother you then reading the following information would be quite helpful for your requirements:

Where do I find a pet sitter?

There are so many ways to find a quality pet sitter for your dog. You can consult your veterinarian for some recommendations. You can also consult groomer and breeder for a help. These people usually have networks and chances are that they usually know people who do pet sitting as professionals or do it as a hobby out of love for pets. Often times they know of a reliable pet sitter in your area or they can point you in the direction of pet sitter services . Check out with friends and family to get some useful information and recommendation if they can refer you to a pet sitter. Isn’t it a great way to reach to an expert to find a pet sitter? You may consider visiting a nearby local pet store or a chain pet store to get some help.