In about 2 weeks, I will be moving from Illinois to Michigan. The drive is about 3.5 hours, but realistically some of the fish might be in buckets for 6+ hours due to take down and setup time for the tanks.
Currently i have 6 tanks running from 5 to 55 gallons, all planted. I plan to keep as much water as possible (i will save approx. 70 gallons in buckets).
For the smaller tanks which mostly have shrimp I am just going to drain them down most of the way and just move them like that. Potentially leaving shrimp/snails/plants etc in the tanks. Any concerns with this? Should i remove shrimp or plants? They are amano and neos, and the plants are mostly just tough stuff like anubias, crypts, etc.
For the larger tanks I think i'll have to completely drain em and remove the gravel and everything. I'll take care to remove plants/fish first, then all wood/rock, finally scoop all gravel out. I wish i didnt have to do this, but don't think I will be able to move them safely (im on the 3rd floor here!) with gravel inside the tank.
All bio-filter media will go in the respective buckets of tank water with fish. Or should i just put the media in plastic bags to keep them moist?
Should i buy battery op air pumps for the fish buckets?
I have moved with tanks a bunch of times, but this is only my 2nd interstate move with aquariums (and the first one kicked my butt!!). Do any of you have other suggestions to ease the stress of moving a bunch of fish tanks to a new home? I HOPE SO!