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Moving Your Aquarium

An aquarium has to be one of the more challenging items to move. A huge 200-gallon tank and multiple tropical fish may even be one of the reasons why you put off moving for so long! Along with the fish-safety and glass-breaking hazards, moving itself is quite stressful on your watery friends so you'll want to do the job right. Here are some things to help you consider this project.

First - do the fish really need to be moved? Some fish experts suggest the best course may be to sell your fish and buy new ones you get to your new digs. It's probably best to consider moving your fish only if it's a relatively short distance.

If You Move
Your biggest challenge will be time: once you switch the filtration system off, you will only have a few hours before aerobic bacteria begin to die off. If the move is only one or two hours away, you may be able to get away with maintaining the existing tank chemistry. Otherwise, you'll have to start fresh. No matter what, you'll want to save this moving/packing job until very last to minimize the downtime.

The basic steps:

Take your fish out of the tank and put them in a suitable holding container - a bag half-filled with water and half air for each fish will do for short moves.  A clean, sealed container is more secure for longer moves. A portable battery-operated air pump or some oxygen release stones can help ease the stress in transit.
Drain the water out of the tank. If the move is <2 hours you'll want to save as much as you can of the old water and set it aside to preserve the bacteria colony.
Take the tank apart. Wrap plant roots in wet paper towels to keep them moist and then put the bag and roots with a little water into a small plastic lunch bag for the move. Alternatively, you can put plants into a sealable bucket filled with a shallow layer of water.
Put the filter into a clean container you can seal (without cleaning the filter itself that is). 
Pack other hardware like pumps and heaters as you would any delicate item - ideally wrapped loosely in clean packing paper.

Be sure to feed your fish well before the move. They'll likely be too stressed to eat during the trip but they'll be fine for a day (up to a week) if they're well nourished to start with.

Once You Arrive
If your move is longer than a couple of hours, you'll have to go through the whole business of waiting a week to reintroduce your fish to your tank as the chemistry gradually transforms. In that case, you can actually get a pet store to board your fish in the interim.

Assuming your move is shorter, you can simply condition your fish to the tank as you would otherwise. Use as much of the old tank water as you were able to preserve and then reassemble your aquatic creation.

The Movers Choice
You pick up. You move. It’s that simple. The Movers Choice makes moving easy. Whether you’re moving across the hall or across town – our plastic moving box rentals are reliable and eco-friendly and help you get the job done with ease. We also offer a range of moving supplies and services for both business and residential customers.

Call 905.670.2778 or contact us online for the best in plastic moving box rentals in The Greater Toronto Area, Mississauga and beyond…