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Old 04-05-2006, 12:49 AM   #1
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Upgrading the tank in a few weeks... many questions

I recently purchased a 38 gallon tank, and will be moving my fishies from their 20 gallon high into their new home in ~ a month, when I come home from school.

1) My first question is, am I going to need to go through a cycle again, or will placing all my equipment/gravel/decorations in the new tank be sufficient bacteria? How should I go about moving everyone into the new tank? Is there anything I can do in the meantime to prep the tank for move-in?
I've read about running two filters at first (old and new) - doing this should be no problem.

2) Would a HOB filter along with a powerhead meant for a 20 gallon agitating the surface be sufficient aeration for the 38?

3) If I'm going to run 2 heaters, should they both be strong enough to heat the tank alone, or can they be less than sufficient?

4) My 20 gallon inhabitants include:
6 dwarf Corys
6 Zebra Danios
3 Otos
2 Blue Rams
1 L052 Butterfly Pleco

Would I have enough room in a 38 to fit another small Pleco? (38g is 36x12x20).
Any other ideas on fish additions?

Any suggestions are appreciated,
Thanks!
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Old 04-05-2006, 12:57 AM   #2
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Yes running both filters would be an excellent idea. If your substrate, ornaments and filters aren't allowed to dry out and won't be out of the tank for long you should have an instant cycle. Test your parameters a day or two after the change to be safe.

Is your current HOB for a 20 gal? What about the second filter? Both filters should be sufficient to run the tank on their own in case one filter fails.
Another small pleco should be fine. Just make sure it is a small pleco.

As for other fish additions, make sure to wait a couple of weeks after the move before adding anything else. Some tetras might be nice for color. There are a lot of tetras available.

Is your 20 gal currently in the same house as your 38 will be? If so, get a clean 5 gal pail, no detergent buckets, carefully put the fish into the bucket and make sure the temp in the new tank is the same. I would also use 25% of the original tank water in the new tank. Change over the substrate, ornaments and filters, then carefully add the fish. Good luck with the move.
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Old 04-05-2006, 02:13 PM   #3
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Thanks a lot Zagz! Great advice.

What I was planning on doing is, since I'm at school, tearing down the 20 gallon when I move home for summer (~ an hour away) and when I get home just setup the 38 and put the fish in there for good. I would probably go home the day before and set up the 38 as best I could so I could have it ready for the fish as fast as possible.

Any recommendations on how to keep the fish happy during the move, and the bacteria on the equipment/decorations happy?
I was thinking a bucket for the fish filled with tank water, and a bucket for the decorations filled with tank water. When I get home, while I set up the 38, I could run a heater/air stone in the fish's bucket. How long would it be safe to keep them in a bucket w/out an airstone? Would they be okay in a car ride for a little over an hour?

Thanks again!
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Old 04-05-2006, 02:57 PM   #4
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Ok for a longer move what I would do is get a rubbermaid container, put the fish and a reasonable amount of water in the container. If you have a battery powered pump to run an airstone that would be great. If not the fish should be ok for an hour or so. Put a couple of your ornaments in the container so they can feel like they are hiding under them. I've noticed although they can't hide in a rubbermaid container they seem to think they can. LOL. Keep the lid tightly on so that water doesn't splash around. When you get to your house, take the lid off and let them adjust a bit to the light and add them slowly to the new tank.
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Old 04-05-2006, 03:56 PM   #5
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I recently moved 2 tanks of fish ~ 2 hours away. You want to keep your gravel wet, your plants/decorations/etc submerged and ideally, your fish aerated (sp?)

I had a bunch of 5g buckets and an empty blazer for my move. I put the fish in 2 of the buckets with about 3.5g of tank water in each, then ran an air pump to both tanks powered off my cigarette lighter. I then had a bucket with all of the decorations in it along with another 3.5g or so of tank water (these all had lids) And I also filled several buckets up with my gravel - made sure to only fill them up halfway or so and then put enough water in the bucket to bring the water level up to the level of the gravel. All-in-all, I was able to save about 1/3 to 1/2 of my original tank water so setting things back up was a breeze and tank conditions were stable from the get-go.

I guess the most important part is keeping your gravel, decorations and filter media wet the entire time. (and keeping your fish alive)

oh! one more thing - dont feed them for a couple days before you move - that way there is less waste to deal with moving and little to no chance of getting an amoina spike in your buckets of fish when you're driving.
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