Emergency Beta help, overfeed + anaerobic due to power outage(hurricane Irma) - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-24-2017, 09:52 AM Thread Starter
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Emergency Beta help, overfeed + anaerobic due to power outage(hurricane Irma)

Ok, so this is like the perfect storm of disasters here.

I was 10 days without due to hurricane irma, generator blew out, UPS ran out of battery, etc....
I threw a fish feeder that I normally don't use and it was not calibrated correct and it dumped a ton of food into the 10 gallon beta tank so much that every inch of the bottom of the tank is covered with food, the lack of electric cause no air pump or filter.
I came back to a tank that smelled like a toilet and do murky you can't see. One of the worst smelling tanks I have ever seen, made me want to throw up just being near it.
When I tried to take out what looked like a dead beta, I was shocked to see him still moving slightly.

I immediately ran and grabbed a big red cup and filled it with distilled water and put the beta in the cup.

First of all, is 100% distilled water ok for an emergency situation? Should I keep my beta in a cup with distilled water for the time being? What should I be doing with the beta right now?

Second, what do I do with this tank?

Option #1 empty tank out, refill with fresh water, vacuum the bottom, refill with fresh water repeat several times,etc... After clean,
use air pump and clean filter, put under heavy light for plans in order to why to introduce air into the anaerobic environment, get the nitrogen cycle going and see if tank recovers.
( Will introducing air into an anaerobic environment kill the bad bacteria?
Option #2, Remove plants, take tank outside and wash with garden house several times then nuke it with a gallon of bleach then rebuilding tank from scratch?

Is there an option 3?

Please offer whatever advise you can? I would greatly appreciate it.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-24-2017, 12:18 PM
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Just clean the tank really well and restart. You may be able to save your cycle but not likely. If you have to use bottled water spring water would be a much better choice. Distilled water has nothing in it, and is too pure for fish.


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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-24-2017, 02:05 PM
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+1 - total tear down and clean, but no real need to sterilize. Treat any filter media as you would the Beta and as mentioned, spring water (or now tap water, treated as needed) is better than distilled.
If you have filter media, put inside a small bucket with an air stone would be good....beneficial bacteria is really resilient and you may save it/have it come back.
Good luck and otherwise hope you weathered the storm okay! Hurricanes are scary business.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-24-2017, 02:32 PM
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Your cycle will be fine. The fact that the tank smelled is a good indication that the bacteria were doing their job. Clean the tank and replace all of the water and and it should be fine for the fish. RO water or distilled water will not kill the fish. They can survive normally for an extended period of time in it. Eventually they may suffer from mineral deficiencies, but they get most of the minerals they need from food anyway,
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-24-2017, 04:22 PM
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Just a clarification that distilled water or pure RO or RO/DI water is NOT really good for fish - it is simply too pure. Fish obtain much of their vital minerals from the water column through osmosis.
As a matter of fact, Seachem sells Fresh Trace to better ensure fish get the appropriate minerals from the water (Incidentally, the analysis of Fresh Trace is is very similar to Flourish Comprehensive).

Note: Short duration in distilled, RO, or RO/DI water is not a problem, however, long term should be avoided.

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-26-2017, 12:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AbbeysDad View Post
Just a clarification that distilled water or pure RO or RO/DI water is NOT really good for fish - it is simply too pure. Fish obtain much of their vital minerals from the water column through osmosis.
As a matter of fact, Seachem sells Fresh Trace to better ensure fish get the appropriate minerals from the water (Incidentally, the analysis of Fresh Trace is is very similar to Flourish Comprehensive).

Note: Short duration in distilled, RO, or RO/DI water is not a problem, however, long term should be avoided.
Exactly right. Short term. A day or two at most.

Spring water or "drinking water" is way better.

Dilution is the solution for the pollution.
Quote me as saying I was misquoted.
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