Product Review by Doug Wojtczak

Wouldn't it be nice if there was a logbook of some type that would help keep track of all fish or reefkeeping related information? The Aquarium Journals Marine Edition logbook is a detailed, yet simple to use written logbook that allows the aquarist to keep track of important additions or changes to your fish or reef tank.

Product Overview:

The logbook is contained in a sturdy 9.5" by 8" hard three-ring binder with a hard box cover to protect the binder from the harsh elements around our tanks. Inside, are six, well-organized large tabs that include: Equipment, Fish Stores, Internet, Livestock, Maintenance and Quarantine. Under each tab are many pages to record information about your tank.

Here is the information that can be recorded under each section:


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The equipment section allows input of information on up to 15 pieces of equipment including: date, store name where purchased, cost, manufacturer, serial number, warranty information and when to service or replace.

Fish Stores:

The fish store section allows recording of information such as name, address, phone, when they receive new stock, specialties and whether they will hold or quarantine your purchase. There is additional space to record notes or comments and enough total space for 15 local fish stores.


The internet sites section has enough space to record 25 useful internet sites.


The livestock section stands out because of the amount of information that can be recorded. Here are some of the fields included: common name, scientific name, compatibility, territorial or aggressive attributes, potential size, tank size required, feeding, nutrients, selection tips, water parameters, lighting, date purchased, cost and a few others. By listing all of these items, the hobbyist is forced to think of important issues that may affect the well-being of the specimen, prior to its purchase. There is enough space to record information on up to 40 animals.

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The maintenance section includes smaller tabs for each month of the year that is designed as both a separator and a writing area where maintenance tasks, such as notes, current observations and future plans for the next month, can be recorded.

Under the monthly separator tab are pages for each week of the month, which has enough space to record water changes, water test results, special feeding, equipment added or replaced, livestock that has been added or removed and a large amount of other useful information.


The quarantine area allows you to record information about new livestock acclimation, disease treatment, medications that you've added and the dates you added them, feeding, water quality and general observations. There is enough space to log up to 20 species.

Throughout the logbook, generalized tips and hints are found which include an equipment checklist for setting up a new tank, type of livestock list with common name of both fish and inverts, water and maintenance guidelines and acclimation tips. There is also a small ruler to measure fish or other small items and at the back of the book are pouches for pictures and a ziplock type, receipt pouch. Some of the more prudent reef keepers might want to remove the receipt pouch to keep incriminating reef related expenditures from their spouses, though.

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Now you might ask, "Why can't I use a plain old $1.99 notebook from the local stationary store and accomplish the same thing?" Well... how many times have you put a normal paper notebook under your tank just to have water or even worse, skimmate, ruin the pages and the all the information on them? If the journal is kept in its hardbound case, problems with smeared ink should be a thing of the past.

As a suggested improvement, I would add a handy place to store a pen in the binder. Even though I have a house full of pens, I can never find one when I need it and if there was a place to keep a pen inside the book or perhaps have one included with it, that would make it complete.

Overall, this is a worthy product, and I feel that the beginning fish or reefkeeping hobbyist would benefit greatly from using this type of logbook. Keeping this type of detailed record can do nothing but help in the long-term husbandry of the animals and fish, or the reef tank itself. For the reefkeeper who does not use a computer, would rather have the logbook near the tank instead of on a PC (like me), or those who want to have a portable, detailed, written log, this product is the one to get.

More information about The Aquarium Journal can be found at:

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Product Review - Aquarium Journals: Marine Edition by Doug Wojtczak -