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Old 07-01-2018, 06:59 PM   #1
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keeping tanks running while out of town for an extended time

I have a 29 gallon aquarium that has been running for years. It's pretty understocked at this point. 13 small tetras, a still small siamese algae eater and a few otos/amanos/nerites.

I'm going to be out of town for a month or two while I'm on maternity leave and I can't break down and move the whole tank and all the rooted plants etc while I'm gone. I also don't have a fish-knowledgeable person to look in on them while I'm away. Fortunately, a friend near where I am spending my maternity leave had a 20 gallon tank/stand unused in their garage and offered it to me as a temporary home for my fish.

I've already moved the tetras and the siamese algae eater (as well as all the non-rooted plants) into the 20 gallon. The 20 is, unfortunately, mini-cycling, despite my bringing some filter media with me, (apparently not enough!) But that I know how to deal with and isn't the subject of my question.

My question is about the tank that remains behind. My otos completely ignore pellets and blanched vegetables so I don't think they'd do well in the newly set up tank with no algae. My plan is to leave them behind in the now almost vacant 29 gallon so they can continue to munch away on the biofilm/algae while I'm gone. Obviously I'd leave the filter on and keep lights on a timer to keep the plants/algae doing their thing. I'm taking the heater out so it can't malfunction while I am gone. (The apartment itself will remain at 78 through the summer anyway because I wont bother air conditioning it cooler than that. I'll be back in town before we start getting cooler nights.) I'm not really concerned about nitrate build up over that time not only because it will be so understocked but also because with all the plants in the tank I actually had to dose nitrates with my water changes to keep the nitrates above zero even with the tetras in the tank.

Do you guys think they will be okay mostly unattended for that extended period of time?

I am aware that there is no way to know for certain and that obviously if something dies in the tank and the parameters go whacky without someone there to fix it, things could crash, but I still think they probably stand a better chance in the established biofilm-rich tank than they would with me trying to keep them fed in essentially a brand new tank.

Even if I do leave the otos behind, do you think I should catch some/all of the amanos and put them in the 20 gallon too? They're quite happy to eat pellets so I'm not as concerned with keeping them fed in the new/temporary tank. I do have a spare 5 gallon tank they could go into to wait out me dealing with the mini cycle in the 20.

libertybelle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-01-2018, 07:06 PM   #2
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I think your ottos and Amano will be fine while you are gone

Depending on how you are filtering I would give those and hoses a good cleaning.

Happy Maternity leave!
mbkemp is offline   Reply With Quote

tan, tank, tanks, ten

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