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-   -   How would you handle feeding for 12 tanks if you are vacation for a week? (http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=331922)

TraceyW 05-13-2013 04:58 PM

How would you handle feeding for 12 tanks if you are vacation for a week?
 
Most of them are lightly planted and stocked with just a few fish except for one of my 30 gallons (which has an unknown adult spotted pleco at 5 inches long, 2 adult cobra guppies, 5 adult breeding group of green cories, 3 baby cories (at 1/4 inch long) and about 5 guppy fry about 1/4 inch also)t . I just have a few RCS in my shrimp tank with snails.

Do I use a small vacation feeder block in them? Do I feed well before I head out and let them coast for almost a week? We'll be leaving on a Saturday morning and will be back late the following Friday.

pejerrey 05-13-2013 05:04 PM

How would you handle feeding for 12 tanks if you are vacation for a week?
 
Feed them normally or a tiny bit more every day for the whole week before you leave. Don't feed them a lot the day before leaving, this would make the water quality go down.

Anyhow, I would change water twice (50% each time) during the week before leaving. So they have good clean water.

I think fish are ok without eating for a whole week. They won't be ok with decomposing stuff in their tanks.

Good luck

Nubster 05-13-2013 06:40 PM

Yeah, they'll be fine for a week.

flight50 05-13-2013 06:59 PM

That's quite a few to feed there. Alot of people on here have done it a time or two. In nature fish go without in spurts as well. I prefer to feed pretty good and just hope for the best. Allowing someone else to manage your tanks while your gone could be a decision you'd regret. There are tons of overfeeding horror stories on the web.

MamaFish 05-13-2013 07:28 PM

I was on vacation for 5 days and most of my fish were fine without being fed (I did lose an oto...who had plenty of algae to eat, so idk?). I fed them extra two days before I left, and did a water change the evening before. Even with the dead fish carcass, water parameters were fine. Get a timer for your lights, though, if you don't already have one.

Soup12 05-13-2013 08:50 PM

eheim automatic feeders. 1 week food blocks for 2 week+ vacations for tanks w/o auto feeders.

Plants have tons of microscopic food for fish. I also have a natural ecosystem for many tanks (snails/shrimp breed to feed dwarf puffers) (endlers breed to feed turtles) etc....

BBradbury 05-13-2013 10:01 PM

Vacation Tank Maintenance
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TraceyW (Post 3355666)
Most of them are lightly planted and stocked with just a few fish except for one of my 30 gallons (which has an unknown adult spotted pleco at 5 inches long, 2 adult cobra guppies, 5 adult breeding group of green cories, 3 baby cories (at 1/4 inch long) and about 5 guppy fry about 1/4 inch also)t . I just have a few RCS in my shrimp tank with snails.

Do I use a small vacation feeder block in them? Do I feed well before I head out and let them coast for almost a week? We'll be leaving on a Saturday morning and will be back late the following Friday.

Hello Trace...

Fish can easily go a couple of weeks without food. What you do is a couple of weeks before you leave (ideally, but you can start now), you feed a little more and a little more often. You want to build up a little fat reserve in your fish.

A couple of days before leaving, you stop all feeding and do an extra large water change on the tank. The fish will spend their time foraging for the last bit of food left and live on their fat reserve, while you're gone.

The fish are fine without eating for a few days and you come home to a clean tank. That's what I do and I've got six large tanks and our vacations are typically a couple of weeks.

It would be nice if you have a friend to come over to check on everything, but it's not a necessity.

B

melanotaenia 05-13-2013 10:11 PM

+1 as long as you don't have any major predatory fish (which you don't seem to from what I can see and read) then you would not really have to worry about food for a week; if they are really hungry, they may just nibble on some of the mirco-algaes or some of the plants in your tank. But even after a week I doubt that would happen.

Saltwater fish can go for even longer without eating, I have left them for about 10 days in a reef without food and they did fine.

DogFish 05-14-2013 02:43 AM

I agree with big cleaning/WC before you go. I would have someone stop by at midpoint of the vacation like day 3 or 4. Have remeasured food set-up for each tank, water in gallon jugs for top-offs. Have each tank numbered 1-12 incase they observe a problem they can say in Tank #_ there's floater or Tank # _ the water temp is 69 degrees.

Nami 05-14-2013 02:59 AM

I would also go without feeding them for a week. Or, with an automatic feeder that you've tried and tested prior to leaving, in the case that you really want to let them have food during this time.

Your tanks really aren't that stocked so I wouldn't be too worried in general. I might do a water change before leaving if you really want to have your bases covered. But I wouldn't change any filter media or such to ensure a substantially present beneficial bacteria colony. But even then, I don't really think it's absolutely necessary to do a water change outside of your regular schedule. If the fish aren't getting fed, they're actually producing less nh3/4, resulting in less no2-/3-, etc etc.

If your tank is planted, you should not worry about a spike unless there is by chance equipment malfunction. If your tank isn't planted, a handy thing you could do is actually throw a handful of hornwort in there. But I still think that's overkill for a week.

Diana 05-14-2013 04:55 AM

If you want to use a vacation feed, use the gel type, not the plaster things.
I have seen some pretty delicate critters thrive when the gel products were used. I think Tetra makes them. There are 2 sizes. For all the lightly stocked tanks, 1 or even half of one. For the heaviest stocked tank one of the larger ones.
If the Pleco is a vegetarian you might add a chunk of raw broccoli stem, yam, pumpkin or other hard vegetable. Something that will take a while for him to gnaw through.

shift 05-14-2013 06:07 AM

Not to hijack but would a moderately stocked tank (20 rummys, 5 harlequins, 5 otts, 4 neons and 15 ish cpd in an 84G) be okay under the same conditions? (with out eating for 6 ish days?

Also would fry tanks (fry-3/4 adult size) last a week with out food?

BBradbury 05-14-2013 01:53 PM

Vacation Tank Care
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by shift (Post 3361314)
Not to hijack but would a moderately stocked tank (20 rummys, 5 harlequins, 5 otts, 4 neons and 15 ish cpd in an 84G) be okay under the same conditions? (with out eating for 6 ish days?

Also would fry tanks (fry-3/4 adult size) last a week with out food?

Hello shift...

Just feed a bit more than normal for a few days before you leave and then change out half the tank water a couple of days prior.

I like to make the replacement water a bit warmer than that in the tank. The flush of warm, pure water tends to energize my fish and the extra food will easily sustain your fry for a few days.

I'd discourage the use of auto feeders or anything like that, even the pricey ones can malfunction and then you'd have a tank problem, with no way to fix things. They're really not needed if you're only away for a few days.

B

shift 05-14-2013 02:46 PM

Thanks for the tips! I will be out of town thursday-sunday.. and generally bribe the parents to feed all the tanks, but if i don't have to.. then it makes life alot easier :) (that and i'm certain they overfeed!)

Leaky Filter 05-14-2013 02:58 PM

It's also worth mentioning that you can add a week's worth of ferts at one time and cut way back on algae blooms in high-tech tanks. I didn't fertilize once and came back to a hair algae ball that took a little bit of work to correct. Since then, I added ferts and came back to some spot algae here and there, but nothing major. I'll do a week's worth of micros the night before with a big top off and dump a week's worth of macros the day of departure. I leave a week at a time four or five times per year.

ETA: I don't worry about feeding them. I will feed more frozen food on the front end and back end but that's about it. Of course, run a big water change as close to departure as reasonable.


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