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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 12:46 AM Thread Starter
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Holiday plans

So I'm coming home from college for Thanksgiving break. I have three fish tanks that need taking care of. What's the best strategy for me to use?
Tank 1: My misfits tank, filled with red platies and white cloud mtn minnows. 30 gallons, filled with my "waste" RO/DI water. Fed via autofeeder
Tank 2: My shrimp tank, filled with 10 red cherry shrimp, and moderately planted. 29 gallons, filled with RO/DI water. Fed via leaves/microfilm/algae
Tank 3: My reef tank, filled with live rock, two yellowbelly damselfish, and coral. 55 gallons, filled with RO/DI water mixed with salt. fed via autofeeder

I plan on changing at least 10 gallons in the 29 gallon tank/day, and devoting the rest of my water change water to the 55 gallon tank. Additionally, I plan on adding up to 16 cherry shrimp to the 29 gallon tank. Maybe quarantine some fish for the 55 gallon (barbershop pole gobies). I also need to gather fallen leaves for my tubbing projects this summer.

I currently have a 50 gpd RO/DI filter, but that's 50 gallons/24 hours, which really means about 25 gallons per day (due to me sleeping and stuff). So what's the best plan of action for water changes throughout the week to minimiize stress on my tank inhabitants while improving water quality? Additionally, I do need to spend time with my family and stuff...

So many fish to keep, not enough aquaria.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by ichthyogeek View Post
So I'm coming home from college for Thanksgiving break. I have three fish tanks that need taking care of. What's the best strategy for me to use?...
Being your a college student, and home only part time, the really best way to deal with this would be to sell or give away the livestock and tear down the tanks until your through with college. This is more that most people would care to do.

As for tank maintenance, take care of the reef system first. SW tanks crash a lot more easily than FW systems. You sure don't want to have that tank crash when your away, leaving then smell and mess for someone else to clean up,

Then take care of the FW tanks. Unless you have really bad tap water you can usually use that with some Prime for water changes.

I'd worry more about all the equipment being in good working order. You can usually delay a water change for awhile if you need to. It's not ideal though.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 01:00 PM
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How long is break? A week? I wouldn't worry too much about feeding. They'll be just fine for a week without food. They'll scavenge. If you're not overstocked there would really be little to worry about sans an equipment failure.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 01:39 PM
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You're better off essentially doing nothing. Do some water changes before you leave, dont feed while you're gone and dont worry about any water changes while you're gone. Everything should be fine for a week.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 02:41 PM
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Didn't you also mention in a previous thread that you would be leaving the tanks unattended after Thanksgiving until Christmas break (pretty much a full month)? Or was I mistaken?

Just a week unattending the fish tanks I wouldn't be worried about, but a month I would surely make plans. I have gone a lot longer than a month without water changes and water parameters were fine and fish were fine as well, but I would just mainly be worried about the fish not being fed, so either have someone feed them every once in a while or get a automated feeder (seen those cost about $15).

As for the reef tank and keeping plants fed with ferts, I haven't had experience maintaining those while I'm away so I can't offer any advice for those. But for plants, maybe adding sufficient (don't go overboard) time-released root tabs/osmocote+ will keep them in okay shape until you get back.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 08:40 PM Thread Starter
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Uhm...I think that y'all are kind of reversing the situation here... My fish tanks are at home, where I'm going. I'm wondering the best way to care for them when I get back for a week.

The tanks have been relatively unattended for quite a while (Around September?). All that's been going on has been feeding (thank Eheim for automatic feeders, and Catappa trees for leaves), and topping up with either RO/DI water (planted/reef tank) or RO/DI waste water (misfit tank). Additionally, my parents sometimes remove the protein skimmate if I ask them nicely...

So...I've been gone for a long time, and my tanks need some TLC. Best ways to do this?

So many fish to keep, not enough aquaria.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ichthyogeek View Post
Uhm...I think that y'all are kind of reversing the situation here... My fish tanks are at home, where I'm going. I'm wondering the best way to care for them when I get back for a week.

The tanks have been relatively unattended for quite a while (Around September?). All that's been going on has been feeding (thank Eheim for automatic feeders, and Catappa trees for leaves), and topping up with either RO/DI water (planted/reef tank) or RO/DI waste water (misfit tank). Additionally, my parents sometimes remove the protein skimmate if I ask them nicely...

So...I've been gone for a long time, and my tanks need some TLC. Best ways to do this?
LOL thats a much different situation. Dont know what to advise for that. If the inhabitants have made it this far without any real maintenance; then doing maintenance and water changes now is likely to cause parameters to swing wildly which is never good. Might be time to either find someone to take care of this stuff for you regularly or put the hobby on pause for a while. While everything has been going ok so far I dont foresee things continuing to go so well for 4 (+?) years of college with almost no maintenance. Especially not on that reef tank!

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2015, 10:12 PM
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I'd recommend this order-

Tank 3
Tank 1
Tank 2

You're quarantining some fish for the 55, what does that mean? Additions? Hope not. Do whatever maintenance is needed for this one but I'd suggest no new livestock in any of the tanks. You're not there to really enjoy or take care of it, why ask for trouble?

The misfit tank- trim plants but no re-arranging, WC for sure.

Shrimp tank- seems like a lot of WC planned for a tank that has not had much
done while you were away. Too much of a change might be more harmful/shock to the shrimp unless you can match very closely. If you can, by all means change out the ten gallons. But this one is the one you can probably not even touch. Just trim any plants that need it, top off again or do five gallon WC if you have time left after everything else.

Like you said, need time to spend with family too.

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