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Old 01-15-2022, 12:05 AM   #1
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Do "chilly" fish huddle near automatic aquarium warmers?

Hi,

I’m configuring a temperature control system, and was happy to find the submerged, automatic temperature monitors that turn on when the temperature gets low, and shut off automatically.

When this happens, is it common to see fish swim near the heaters, until the water temperature rises to where it should be, and the heater turns off again?

Thank you!

l’HUQ

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Old 01-15-2022, 02:22 AM   #2
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It would make sense they’d go to a warm area, just like when you find game fish at a warm water discharge in the wild during winter months.
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Old 01-15-2022, 11:24 AM   #3
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They don't do it in any of my tanks. If you put a thermometer as far from the heater as possible you'll have an accurate indication of the overall temperature. Circulation assures there are no hot spots or cold spots, so your thermometer should indicate that temps only drop 1-3º before the heater kicks in again. That's not enough to discomfort anyone.

The only creatures I've seen hug the heater are mystery snails when they're about to nocturnally lay eggs. If you see one on the heater all day, it's almost guaranteed you'll find eggs at the top of the tank the next morning.
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Old 01-15-2022, 11:52 AM   #4
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They don't do it in any of my tanks. If you put a thermometer as far from the heater as possible you'll have an accurate indication of the overall temperature. Circulation assures there are no hot spots or cold spots, so your thermometer should indicate that temps only drop 1-3º before the heater kicks in again. That's not enough to discomfort anyone.

The only creatures I've seen hug the heater are mystery snails when they're about to nocturnally lay eggs. If you see one on the heater all day, it's almost guaranteed you'll find eggs at the top of the tank the next morning.
Very interesting! Thank you!!
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Old 01-15-2022, 08:11 PM   #5
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Depending on the temperature controller and the water movement around the heater, The water temp should be fairly consistent whether the heater is on or off.

If you’re getting big enough temperature swings in the tank that the fish are huddling around the heater, you either have extremely poor water circulation or the heater is way undersized for the temperature differential between the set point and the room temperature
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Old 01-16-2022, 08:10 PM   #6
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Depending on the temperature controller and the water movement around the heater, The water temp should be fairly consistent whether the heater is on or off.

If you’re getting big enough temperature swings in the tank that the fish are huddling around the heater, you either have extremely poor water circulation or the heater is way undersized for the temperature differential between the set point and the room temperature
Thanks. FYI, to clarify, this is not a heater situation I have, just a question to help me understand the many things I'll have to do to monitor temperature, test new heats, new systems, etc. So thank you for the info! Very fun stuff. My first actual tank will probably arrive tomorrow, so I am in the stage writing up the equipment configuration (on paper) and adding (on paper) things to it piece by piece.

Just on the topic of heat -- keeping tank size in mind when designing a system; choosing equipment that covers your expected technical & size needs; creating a maintenance plan that includes temperature checks and journaling; monitoring and adjusting temperature; know the "wiggle room" in temp ranges (the ultimate optimum temp range, the acceptable temp range; the concern/emergency/take action now range); and then, the Concern & Emergency Action plans you have to have written up in case action is indicated -- there is SO much to learn, and it is so fun.

It is all very new. Right now, in addition to the small tank arriving tomorrow (I hope), I have ordered:
- a heater & filter bundle (boxtech, it's good deal bundle, so if the heater is too much, or the filter is not exactly the right type, one or both can be returned or kept for a 2nd tank)
- an indoor temperature and humidity monitor and recorder, to help me start paying attention to the ambient influence on the tank, and another safeguard;
- an API freshwater master test kit;
- an air stone / tank bubbler [SIDE QUESTION TO SELF -- I noticed my filter (above) is an oxygen pump, so I need to check whether the air bubbler redundant or both are need]
- water conditioner
- tank scrubber brush

ALSO on the side, I have a small terrarium coming so I can keep non-aquatic plants too. My freshwater tank visual design is modern architecture / cubist glass house theme, so the terrarium will be an adjunct/adjacent "building"

- small clear 3" x 3" x 2" square bowls for either the terrarium, or for in-tank isolated planting. Three in a row, or in a corner, might look nice for aquatic plants, and allow me to also keep part of the tank floor just glass, no gravel or substrate. Still researching and asking around.
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