If you have an aquarium and plan to move, you may be wondering whether or not to give the fish away. It is commonly suggested to give fish away when you move long distance, since moving can be stressful for the fish. However, it is still possible to move them with some careful planning. Here are tips to prepare an aquarium for moving.
Prepare to Work
For this project, you need to gather:
- five gallon bucket
- plastic bags (optional)
- rags or old towels
- damp, old newspapers
- insulating foam sheets
- packing paper
- bubble wrap
- battery-powered air pump or air rock
- siphon hose
- labels and marker
- Poly boxes (optional)
- box for tank
Don't feed the fish twenty four hours before the move to help cut down on waste. Fish can survive several days without being fed. If you are flying, ask the airlines about the requirement for traveling with fish..
Empty the Tank
Unplug the tank, and let it cool. Remove decorations and plants from the tank to make catching the fish easier, and set the plants water five gallon bucket of water from the tank, and prepare another bucket for the fish; draining the water with a siphon hose. Using the same water helps reduce the risk of toxic ammonia spikes.
Five-gallon buckets can help transport multiple fish, or fish with sharp fins, but use clean buckets to ensure no chemicals are present. For shorter moves you may be able to transport fish in plastic bags from a pet supply store filled with water from the tank.
Wash and dry the decorations, and wrap them with bubble wrap. Detach the filters, lights, and pumps, then wrap each separately.
Clean all parts, but the filter. Wrap the filter in damp newspaper to preserve good bacteria. Label the parts, and mark them "FRAGILE"
Transfer the Fish
Gently capture the fish with the net, and place them in their containers. Make the containers as dark as possible, to reduce stress by covering it with towels or rags. If your fish are use to a certain temperature, set the container in Poly boxes from a fish store.
Cover the buckets tightly, and poke small air holes in the lid. Install a battery power air pump to increased the time they can stay out of water.
Pack the Tank
Finish draining the tank, and remove as much gravel as possible to reduce weight. Wrap the lid in bubble wrap or packing paper. Add a layer of paper padding for extra stability. If needed, get an assistant to help you set the aquarium in the box.
Cover the top of the tank with an insulating foam sheet, then cu smaller pieces of foam on the sides to prevent shifting. Stuff packing paper into empty spaces, so the glass won't get scratched, and label the box "FRAGILE".
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