For more information about planted aquariums, Natural Aquariums recommends "The Simple Guide to Planted Aquariums" by Terry Barber and Rhonda Wilson.
Pond Life "This inexpensive guide is one of the most useful books I've ever owned and my favorite beginners guide to pond life. I can't even say how many copies I've gone through and given away." - Rhonda Wilson

"Nature Aquarium World 2" The second Nature Aquarium World book from Takashi Amano. Mr. Amano's aquariums and photography make him the most celebrated planted aquarist in the world today.

Christel Kasselmann's "Aquarium Plants" is the most complete encylopedia of aquarium plants to date. A must have book for the aquatic plant enthusiast.

Freshwater Invertebrates


Insects have been very successful making up the largest group of animals in the world. There are some 90,000 species in North America alone. About 5,000 of those spend some or all of their lives in the water.

Adult insects have bodies with hard exoskeletons divided into 3 areas. These include the head, thorax and abdomen. They have 2 antennae and compounded eyes on their heads. The mouth is designed for biting sucking, crushing or piercing, The thorax has 3 pairs of jointed legs and usually 2 pair of wings. The abdomen has no legs and is usually used for mating and laying eggs.

Insects go through several stages in their life cycles; egg, nymph, larva, pupa, adult. The animals can look and behave very differently in the various stages of their life cycles. Several spend their early life in an aquatic environment and leave the water only as adults. The mosquito is probably the most well known insect with this type of life style.

There are at least 25 orders in the Insect class. I have grouped some similar ones together on these pages; True Bugs (Hemiptera), Beetles (Cdeoptera), Flies (Diptera) and Dragonflies and Other Flying Insects (Megaloptera, Odonata, Plecoptera and Trichoptera).


Hydra | Moss Animals | Leeches, Worms, and Planaria
Arthropods | Crustaceans | Small Crustaceans | Insects | True Bugs | Flies
Mollusks | Snails | Ramshorn Snails | Pond Snails | Malayan Livebearing Snails | Clams