How to move fish cross country? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-23-2015, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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Question How to move fish cross country?

Hello everyone,

My GF and I are moving to Austin, TX next week and taking all the critters with us. We are going to be driving there over the course of two days and I'm wondering what is the best way to transport three goldfish and a guppy, so they all make it. I haven't killed anything yet and I'm not about to start now! Any suggestions would be wonderful. I was thinking they should be okay in bags of water for the drive, but am I going to have to setup a little tank when we stop for the night? Also, one leg of the drive is a solid 10 hours, is there enough dissolved O2 in a bag of water to last that long?

Please help. this is looking like a daunting task, and I also have two frogs, a toad and a handful of Nerites to deal with as well.

Thank you!


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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-23-2015, 07:22 PM
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Finding some of those breather bags is part of the solution. Check the local pet shops to see if they have any used/don't want styraphoam fish shipping boxes they might give you.
Temp will raise/drop on a trip like that much slower in those.

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line...in the opposite direction...
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-23-2015, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Raymond S. View Post
Finding some of those breather bags is part of the solution. Check the local pet shops to see if they have any used/don't want styraphoam fish shipping boxes they might give you.
Temp will raise/drop on a trip like that much slower in those.
Yeah Kordon bags allow co2 to escape and oxygen to come in.

Keep in mind people ship fish all the time with no problems so traveling with them is really no different. Bag up the fish and make sure there is more air than water (if using traditional bags) then pack those bags into some sort of insulated container. A box lined with styrofoam, a cooler, or really anything that can hold the bags secure and either comes pre-insulated or something you can line with some sort of insulation to avoid any sudden dramatic temperature changes
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-23-2015, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tips! If I get the fancy bags will they be fine in them over night?


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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-23-2015, 10:43 PM
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With a little prep, this is no biggie. We moved from St. Louis to the North Austin area over a two day stretch and with lots of fish.
In advance, get the plan! Good start on that. If you find the Kordon bags good, if not still okay. Fish have been shipped for days before the bags were developed. A good place to start is by reducing the load of waste the fish will put out. Don't feed them for several days before the trip and don't use dirty tank water while they are in the box/bags. Get as large bags as practical and securely seal the bags. One way to avoid trouble is to bag and seal one bag and then turn it over into a second bag which you seal. This does away with corners in the bag where fish tend to get their heads stuck. Have a local shop show you how to seal if it is new to you. If using regular bags, use just enough water so the fish can swim well, but mostly trap as much air as you can in the bag as you close it to seal. They need air more than water. The car movement mixes the O2 into the water. No pumps needed.
One cheap way to go is bags in a box but it is real easy to buy a styro cooler from big box. Bag em, Box em, seal the box and don't look. If you keep them where you are comfortable, they are good to go. Don't set them on the floor where heat comes through. The seat is better. If you stop for lunch when it's 95, make it short?
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 03:37 AM
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I'd get the kordon bags too. I just got some of the knock off ones on ebay cheap. The Kordon wasn't much more but I would be sending snails at the most so I got the cheaper ones.

At my pet shop they say fish in bags with air like we do them, they don't last more than 1-2 hours. I wouldn't try that method unless the store is wrong, or if the movement does make a big difference like PlantedRich said.


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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 03:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toadpher View Post
...I'm wondering what is the best way to transport three goldfish and a guppy, so they all make it. ... I also have two frogs, a toad and a handful of Nerites to deal with as well. ...
I know we all love out pets, but this is a major move, and it's going to take days even if everything goes well.

Your best solution would be to sell, ot give away the fish and other animals, and just take the tanks and equipment. Then set up new when you get a bit of time.

You're going to have enough going on with the move itself, let alone the fish and other animals.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 06:15 AM
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Since I just made a 900 mile in August I'll have to agree with Dave. Moving is exhausting and doing so with full fish tanks is a bit much. I emptied all 5 of my tanks to the LFS in exchange for a new Hydor filter. I am replacing the carpet under where the 125g tank is going with hardwood next week, so it is still not setup. The others will live in the garage and I am still building workbenches and shelves.

Many years ago when I graduated college, I moved my goldfish from Eastern Oregon to Minnesota. The water in Minnesota was so different that they immediately went into shock and died when I filled up the tank again. Very hard water to very soft water and only very limited Internet (pre-google) so I didn't know any better. Still something to worry about.

I was more careful 3 years later when I moved from Minnesota to California and succeeded in keeping half of the fish alive. Lost most due a cold snap in Colorado. They where in the car I was towing with the uhaul.

Save yourself some heartache and take the fish back to the LFS.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 02:49 PM
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Hauling fish for a couple days is no worse than hauling them across country to or from an auction. Treat them the same as going to an auction. Many of us have hauled fish for days getting home from auctions.
Before we had special bags for fish, they were put in bags and boxed. From South America to the US takes way more than a couple hours.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by schnebbles View Post

At my pet shop they say fish in bags with air like we do them, they don't last more than 1-2 hours. I wouldn't try that method unless the store is wrong, or if the movement does make a big difference like PlantedRich said.

I wouldn't worry so much. Fish are shipped all the time this way and can survive a few days in a bag if done right.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 06:54 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the great responses! Getting rid of them isn't an option, they are a part of the family, even the little snails, but I think you guys have been helpful enough to get them all cross country safe and sound. I'll let y'all know how it does once we get down there!

Can't wait to redo the entire paludarium too. I learned so much the first time around and from you guys, so it should be a million times better this next time around.


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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2015, 03:04 PM
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Traveling in a motor home from California to Tennessee took 5 days. I used an ice chest with a small amount of water and a few plants. I used an invertor that plugs into car outlet to run an air pump at night. Had no losses.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2015, 03:56 PM
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i have small fish and shrimp,moved them all in a 5 home Depot bucket from Chicago to LA. Everytime I stopped for the night I would take the bucket into the hotel with me.

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