The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
675 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 2 tanks...a heavily planted 40 gallon, and an unplanted 20 gallon.

I finally have power restored today after 8 days of Hurricane Sandy outages. I considered both tanks as "goners" very quickly after the storm, when I realized there was no way I could keep the tanks heated and filtered for such an extended outage (even a car battery setup would not have worked for this time).

Both tanks dropped to 49 degrees F.

I experienced 0 deaths (SO FAR...I am sure the immune systems are GONE) in the 20 gallon tank with no plants, whereas I experienced what i believe to be 100% fatality in over 2 dozen fish in the 40 gallon tank. Definitely understocked, with 9 Cardinal Tetras, 6-10 amano shrimp, 3 otos and 2 bolivian rams in the 40 breeder. The 20 gallon on the other hand is very nearly over-stocked...it is a 20 High, with 9 silvertip tetras and 3 cories (recently lost 4 cories due to an unrelated illness prior to the outage...i actually thought this storm would wipe out the tank and i would go in a different direction with it, to be a bit morbid).

The only difference is the mass of plants. I believe they must have depleted oxygen levels and this is what caused the drastic difference in short-term fatalities in the tanks. I know different species are temperature sensitive in different ways, but this EXTREMELY cold and i can't imagine how I would have such opposite results in the 2 tanks...or are Silvertips really that hardy?? I know Cories can tolerate lower temps, but 49??


If so...i think i will do MAJOR trims before big storms roll in in the future. I thought about doing a massive uproot but that would likely have caused many more problems than it would have resolved.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
I think you can't compare because the fishes are different in your tanks. Are you using the same filtration system in both ? Same soil ? Same water ? Were them are same temp before outage ?

Some people have heavily planted tanks with no filtration and only sunlight and are running fine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,428 Posts
Recovery after the power comes back is critical. Too many people rush into getting the temperature back to normal. If the fish survive 8 days, it is far better to work them back to normal temperature slowly, keeping the water clean as you go.

Keep watching for ammonia spikes in the next weeks as you will be likely to have lost bacteria and you may find a spike killing fish at some point.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
371 Posts
I have 2 tanks...a heavily planted 40 gallon, and an unplanted 20 gallon.

I finally have power restored today after 8 days of Hurricane Sandy outages. I considered both tanks as "goners" very quickly after the storm, when I realized there was no way I could keep the tanks heated and filtered for such an extended outage (even a car battery setup would not have worked for this time).

Both tanks dropped to 49 degrees F.

I experienced 0 deaths (SO FAR...I am sure the immune systems are GONE) in the 20 gallon tank with no plants, whereas I experienced what i believe to be 100% fatality in over 2 dozen fish in the 40 gallon tank. Definitely understocked, with 9 Cardinal Tetras, 6-10 amano shrimp, 3 otos and 2 bolivian rams in the 40 breeder. The 20 gallon on the other hand is very nearly over-stocked...it is a 20 High, with 9 silvertip tetras and 3 cories (recently lost 4 cories due to an unrelated illness prior to the outage...i actually thought this storm would wipe out the tank and i would go in a different direction with it, to be a bit morbid).

The only difference is the mass of plants. I believe they must have depleted oxygen levels and this is what caused the drastic difference in short-term fatalities in the tanks. I know different species are temperature sensitive in different ways, but this EXTREMELY cold and i can't imagine how I would have such opposite results in the 2 tanks...or are Silvertips really that hardy?? I know Cories can tolerate lower temps, but 49??


If so...i think i will do MAJOR trims before big storms roll in in the future. I thought about doing a massive uproot but that would likely have caused many more problems than it would have resolved.
Ok, my opinion on this matter is simply the fact that your fish in the different tanks are different. The cardinals and otos can be quite finicky, and those temps will certainly hurt your rams. The silver tips are probably more hardy than we would have assumed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,890 Posts
Recovery after the power comes back is critical. Too many people rush into getting the temperature back to normal. If the fish survive 8 days, it is far better to work them back to normal temperature slowly, keeping the water clean as you go.

Keep watching for ammonia spikes in the next weeks as you will be likely to have lost bacteria and you may find a spike killing fish at some point.
Gunna ask cause this will be important for all of us right around now.
How slowly should we increase the temperature to what it once was?
And, as far as the invasion of ammonia spikes, what can be done aside from water changes to help that come back? Should we add any bottled BB to help re-cycle the tank? Would adding more plants help deal with the ammonia spike at all?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,786 Posts
I have 2 tanks...a heavily planted 40 gallon, and an unplanted 20 gallon.

I finally have power restored today after 8 days of Hurricane Sandy outages. I considered both tanks as "goners" very quickly after the storm, when I realized there was no way I could keep the tanks heated and filtered for such an extended outage (even a car battery setup would not have worked for this time).

Both tanks dropped to 49 degrees F.

I experienced 0 deaths (SO FAR...I am sure the immune systems are GONE) in the 20 gallon tank with no plants, whereas I experienced what i believe to be 100% fatality in over 2 dozen fish in the 40 gallon tank. Definitely understocked, with 9 Cardinal Tetras, 6-10 amano shrimp, 3 otos and 2 bolivian rams in the 40 breeder. The 20 gallon on the other hand is very nearly over-stocked...it is a 20 High, with 9 silvertip tetras and 3 cories (recently lost 4 cories due to an unrelated illness prior to the outage...i actually thought this storm would wipe out the tank and i would go in a different direction with it, to be a bit morbid).

The only difference is the mass of plants. I believe they must have depleted oxygen levels and this is what caused the drastic difference in short-term fatalities in the tanks. I know different species are temperature sensitive in different ways, but this EXTREMELY cold and i can't imagine how I would have such opposite results in the 2 tanks...or are Silvertips really that hardy?? I know Cories can tolerate lower temps, but 49??


If so...i think i will do MAJOR trims before big storms roll in in the future. I thought about doing a massive uproot but that would likely have caused many more problems than it would have resolved.
Hi Doc7,

Sorry for you loss; your experience paralleled mine from last year when we had a big wind storm in the NW and we lost power for a week which I outlined here.

I believe you are right on both counts, overpopulation (and the resulting waste) combined with no filtration probably impacted the 40 gallon as did the fact the heavy plant load absorbs oxygen in the dark and when plants begin to decompose they use up even more oxygen.

I agree it is a good idea to trim or thin the plant load in a tank if an extended power outage is expected. I would wrap the plants in damp newspaper, or put them in a bucket and see what I could salvage when the power came back on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,786 Posts
Gunna ask cause this will be important for all of us right around now.
How slowly should we increase the temperature to what it once was?
And, as far as the invasion of ammonia spikes, what can be done aside from water changes to help that come back? Should we add any bottled BB to help re-cycle the tank? Would adding more plants help deal with the ammonia spike at all?
Hi HybridHerp,

I let the temperature of the tank rise 'naturally' with the increased room temperature and the 5 watt per gallon heater. I did not do any water changes nor did I feed the fish until the normal temperature had been restored for 24 hours and then I fed very, very lightly. I did not experience a noticeable ammonia spike nor did the fish show signs of distress.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,428 Posts
If my tanks go as low as 49 degrees, I would not add the heater for a couple days and just let the room temperature bring it back slowly. At 49, it is likely they have been at that temp for several days already. Since they ARE still alive, I will assume they are severely stressed and that there is likely to be an ammonia spike coming. The last thing I want is to stress them with sudden temperature changes as well as ammonia is more toxic at higher temperature and PH. When we come back and do a large water change to get the ammonia out we also often change the PH,KH and GH as well. We would not drop a newly bought fish into strange water as we are afraid it may kill him. After 8 days, your normal water is very likely to be "strange" to the fish.
I always favor very slow changes for fish who are likely to be stressed. I would not hesitate to go for letting the temperature rise slowly over several days but then it really is a calculated risk with no firm answers. Each tank and situation will be different.
I keep a box of Ammo-chips on the shelf for this sort of thing. It is cheap and easy to store as insurance. I hang a bag in the filter output if I even begin to think there is an ammonia spike coming. I do measure and test but I like to be as proactive as I can when I see trouble coming.
This is a chart on ammonia related to PH which Mardel puts out.
It shows that rocking the boat when ammonia is present can be more danger than good.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
675 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Argh, I already restored temps to normal though I avoided a WC. The 2 rams are actually alive as are some amano. I will have to deal with stress and hopefully not many fatalities over next few days/weeks.

I really don't think 2 bolivian ram, 9 cardinal tetra, and some amano shrimp is overpopulation of a 40 breeder.

Sent from my BlackBerry 9650 using Tapatalk
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top