tank 1 20gal long with 3 bolivian rams, 1 albino br pleco, 4 neon tetra, 2 corys, 3 amano shrimp
tank 2 29 gal with german ram, gold ram, alb Br pleco,2 corys, 2 amano shrimp
tank 3 55gal with 5 dension barbs (3-4inch), 1 blur fem Gourami, alb Br Pleco.....this tank was being stocked
Tank 1, 2, &3 all resided at a Bicycle shop
Tank 4 55gal just set up for 5 days with 2 spikes of sponge squeezing and a few plants, rock, and driftwood from tanks #1 & #2.......
Then Sandi Hit.....power out a the store, home, and everywhere, no gas.....just running cold water, my wood burning stove and many oil lamps. It hit tues night in north NJ and really it was just the winds 60-90mph...not much rain unlike south jersey and the shoreline. Trees down every where, power goes out monday at 6pm. By morning i am able to weave my way to the store thru all the downed trees and power lines and see that temp of all the tank are 68, 70, & 72.....one more day and they are in the 60's......
EVERYONE OUT OF THE POOL!!!
I grab the nearest 5 gal bucket and start scooping fish.......
loaded another with rocks, driftwood, and plants, along with squeezing out the filter sponges into the 2nd bucket.....then removing the filter sponges from the filters standing water and place them into the tank directly........
What temp does the benificial bacteria start to die? not sure of how low the tanks got becasue the power came on wed night and i did not get back until thur morning and found them int he low 70's still re heating......
So anyway.....grab both buckets and rush back home where i have heat...and dump every one into the new pool...........at this point i just put a lot of fish into a very new tank.......there is no way that these fish are going to live.
starting heating tap water on the woodburing stove, filling 5 gal jugs and placing them infront of the wood stove...brought it from 55F up to High 60's F where i would temper it witht he hot water to 76-78.
Doing 20% water change 2x daily ( that was as fast as i can heat the water up-limiting factor).....also the temp needed to be maintain thru the day so i had to mix/ drip in some hot water to the tank directly.
I would lightly vaccuum the surface of the gravel to remove some of the waste and remove the cooler water(definity a gradient from top to bottom when you stick your hand in.
I stopped feeding them from day one.......they are eating the plants and the algae growth.
I test the water every day both with the multi sticks and the liquids tests. All i see is nitrates going up very slightly....almost subjective when looking at the colors.
I am using a tap water conditioner.
I lost a gold ram on day two.
Thurs the store tanks were back and some of the plants were doing ok....and after putting them back together they cleaned up to clear water just abit of algae growth on the sides.
Fri morning i see the blu ram is starting to stress.....i know he will be done if i leave him in there...between the fluctuating cold water and the fish activity it was a bad place.
Then i notice that under the driftwood the damn plecos had shaked up.....little eggs being guarded.....had no idea what to do....had no internet to researching pleco eggs and care....so i removed them (never toughing air)...... knowing with all these hungry fish ...they are dead..........
My only option was to get them to the store tanks.......mind you becasue of the gas crisis i am on y bike. i pack up the driftwood, the ram, and a few neons and pack them in my paniers (bike side bags) and ride 10miles to the store where the power is back but my confidence of the condition of the tanks are not. The ram looked good by sunday in tank #1, got his blk spot back, got some color back and has been eating. But on monday (today) he has ick on one fin. Now i am starting to heat this tank to treat the ick.....all strikes against this little guy.
Also noticed that in tank#2 a few of the eggs have hatched but i see no sign of the little guys.
Power at home is expected tues. All those fish look happy and stress free. Been 6 full days of no filtration & feeding.
Now i uderstand the need for backup power.
Most importantly to me is keeping the tank heaters at the store running.
I am thinking a multi marine battery/dc/ac converter system.
At home i need to do more of a subpanel direct whole house generator. I can hook it into a natural gas line of maybe go solar......10hp 5500watt unit should do hot water, a light or two and some heat....and ofcourse the tank.
I am not out of the woods yet.......after i get my power restored i am sure the recovery of these tanks will be very rocky with recycles, water changes, illnesses, and etc.......