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Hotels, fish, and evacuation.


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  • Regular Member

Hurricane season is next month :yikes

Let's say there's big category 5 one coming where it's mandatory to evacuate.

1:

How am I supposed to take my fish and their 29 gallon tank with the stand with me in my mom's small car?

2:

Also, if I upgrade, how do I take a 55 gallon tank and the stand?

3:

Do hotels allow fish even if it isn't a pet friendly hotel? Are fish to stay in the same room as me?

4:

If only pet friendly hotels accept fish, do they stay somewhere else like cats and dogs do?

Sorry if it's confusing. Thank you. :)

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  • Regular Member

You serious? For a worst case scenario like that I'd leave the fish.

Anyhow... If you have to take them i guess I would get a 5 gallon bucket with a lid and a bubbler. Don't tell the hotel you have fish. Sneak them in the back.

I would be more apt to take things like photo albums, jewelry, clothes, food, etc.

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For a hurricane is have things like a battery operated air pump, extra bottle of prime, styrofoam cooler or large box. In an evacuation you can choose to take the fish with you in the cooler with the air pump. This is will mean frequentl waterchanges and you'll need to be double dosing the prime. I'd say if you have a second floor than put a tank in there if you have to evacuate. Treat it like you would if you were to hide in a house during strong winds, somewhere away from windows and up from any floodwater. Leaving them behind may be the safest solution for them, and if kept in a safe place they should be alright. Moving fish can be very stressful and riding out a storm is a much more viable option.

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You've gotten some great advice already. I remember running from Katrina, the pricey fish that my dad moved all died, while the more common fish, that we left at home, survived. Go figure.

Riding out Sandy, with an almost direct hit on our part of the Jersey Shore, I can tell you that having extra Prime, and lots of battery operated bubblers helped get us through two weeks without power.

Are you in a low-lying part of Louisiana, where mandatory evacs are common? I was born in the ninth ward, but moved to Kenner, and I have found that where you live can make a huge difference in hurricane prep.

Edited by yafashelli
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  • Regular Member

I really don't think taking the tank along would be an option. It would just be too large to transport like that and way too much work to take it down in a dangerous situation. Taking the fish in a bucket with an air stone would work short term though. Like DieselPlower said, I would just sneak them into the hotel and keep the bucket hidden. I don't think they would make too much of a fuss about a bucket with some fish in it but I suppose it would depend on the hotel.

Obviously it's hard to predict how bad the storm damage would be but if you think your house would survive the storm and your tank is in a safe location then leaving them home would be less stressful on them.

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Hi it's great that you care about your fish!...and...you're thinking ahead. Way to go, to get 'er done!

Even if it's stressful to you and the fish, I personally would take mine. It's very do-able. You never know how long you'll have to stay gone. Who knows how hot it will be while you're away? If you live in LA, you know it WILL be hot! Also, no telling how long the power and water may be off.

If you plan ahead and have a few simple things ready it doesn't take much room, and you (for real) can be ready to scoot in five minutes. Hardest part will be all the water changes and water testing while you're away. The stuff you get ready, it can sit in the closet for years (except maybe batteries) and still be fine.

Hotels? Don't even ask about the fish. If you're low-key and quiet checking in, they won't notice or care. What they don't want is: they wouldn't want a big water spill in a room. That will not be a problem. And what they really, really don't want is animals barking or making noise, using the bathroom on the carpet, or tearing up furnishings. You'll have those parts covered!

I gotta go for now, will get some pics and finish this post sometime tonight or tomorrow AM. Hopefully that will be soon enough for ya, and maybe it'll help.

We have moved fish several hundred miles -- twice -- this way and everybody stayed healthy!

Cheers,

Steve

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Well my advice would be as above so I wont repeat what is already stated, and I wish you the best of luck if you do have to transport your fish and stay safe during the hurricane season!!

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  • Regular Member

Hi it's great that you care about your fish!...and...you're thinking ahead. Way to go, to get 'er done!

Even if it's stressful to you and the fish, I personally would take mine. It's very do-able. You never know how long you'll have to stay gone. Who knows how hot it will be while you're away? If you live in LA, you know it WILL be hot! Also, no telling how long the power and water may be off.

Couldn't have said it better. I remember when Hurricane Katrina hit, we stayed 3 months away. My fish would have died if I had any back then. I hope no hurricane will be as bad.

But thank you all for the great advice. :thumbup2: If I sneak them, how long will they last in a tiny bucket?

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When we lost power for over a week more than a decade ago, the hotels kinda changed their pet policies. They can be really understanding in dire situations. We had two 10 gallon fish tanks at the time and they didn't say a thing when my dad dragged them, a dog and two cats into the front door.

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Apologies you had to wait longer than promised!

Part 1 of 2

Stuff to go ahead and collect:

http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taz1107/media/Transport%20Goldfish/Basicmovingsupplies.jpg.html?sort=2&o=0

1. Three empty 2.5-gallon plastic jugs of spring water or drinking water, like Deer Park or Crystal Springs, about $2.59 each at supermarket or Wal-Mart. Cut a flap on three sides in the small end of each of the Deer Park jugs -- cut the end with the plastic tap. Leave the side closest to the tap as the uncut side (where to cut is outlined with red tape in pics).

http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taz1107/media/Transport%20Goldfish/Cutflap3sidesalongredtape.jpg.html?sort=2&o=2

2. Three (or at least two) clean 30-quart Rubbermaid clear plastic tubs with lids, about ($8.00?) each. I think 27-qt Sterilite containers work too, but please double-check that Deer Park jugs fit OK. If you have 3 fish, three tubs would be best so each fish has as much water as possible at your hotel.

You can compare different Rubbermaid sizes to mix-and-match with however many jugs you need and how much room you have in car.

3. One or two battery-powered air pumps. Wal-Mart sporting goods section has good ones for price imo, for fishermen's live bait buckets, about $9.59 each. Petsmart's TopFin battery air pump for about $11.50 is fine; Marineland ones are OK too.

4. Three or four airstones and plenty of air tubing (couple bucks at Wal-Mart).

5. Air tubing connectors. Petco 2-Way Air Control Valve Comb ones (in pics) for $4.99 each are awesome. You also could use some simple T connectors, about $1.00-$1.60 (at Petco for example), if you want to spend less.

http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taz1107/media/Transport%20Goldfish/BatteryairpumpwithT-connectors.jpg.html?sort=2&o=1

6. Enough D-cell batteries for your air pump(s) and a couple extras.

7. A list of everything you'll need for fish care -- lots of Prime or AmQuel, fish food, water test kits, water treatment chemicals like baking soda/aquarium salt/Seachem products, tank thermometer (important), ALL MEDS that you have; a couple clean plastic cups or milk jugs with top cut off and handle left on, an old towel if you want, etc.

Put the list with the empty 2.5-gallon jugs so you can just check stuff off when it's time to leave.

Edited by Steve1107
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Part 2 of 2

When it's time to evacuate:

1. Telescope the plastic tap on each Deer Park jug open and run air tubing through hole in tap, or pull off the smaller part of tap entirely, run air hose through hole, then attach air stone.

http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taz1107/media/Transport%20Goldfish/BatteryairpumpwithT-connectors.jpg.html?sort=2&o=1

2. Fill each Deer Park jug with tank water to just below the upper narrow place (orange tape in pic) in the jug, to the tip of the blue arrow (pic). The narrow place helps keep water from sloshing out so easily. Add a fish to each jug and lower 3-sided flap back in place, it'll stay more or less closed on its own and keep the fish and the water where you want them. Make sure you keep the jugs upright with open end on top. Don't put anything else in jug, that way there's nothing extra that the fish could injure herself on. Put the Rubbermaid tubs in the car and then load two jugs in one Rubbermaid bin and one jug in the other. Stack one of the Rubbermaid tubs inside the third (empty) one. Check to make sure you put the Rubbermaid lids in the car, too.

http://s848.photobucket.com/user/taz1107/media/Transport%20Goldfish/Tubsholdwaterjugsupright.jpg.html?sort=2&o=3

4. Throw your Prime, fish food, and all the other stuff on your list into some Ziploc bags. If you use the 3 jug / 2 Rubbermaid plan, toss the Ziplocs into the Rubbermaid with the one Deer Park jug to help keep the jug upright.

5. Hook up the battery air pumps and aerate water. Remember that the fish can't stay in a car parked in the sun.

6. At your hotel, empty the stuff out of the Rubbermaid tubs; fill each tub with tap water that you test, treat, and pH- and temperature- match; then add a fish and an airstone to each tub. If the fish have been in the Deer Park jugs a long time, you may want to acclimate them to the new water and then throw out the jug water. Put a lid loosely on each tub because Goldfish, of course.

7. You'll probably have to change the water every 24-36 hours per ammonia test results. Personally, it would take me about an hour or a little more each day to test, buffer, and change all three Rubbermaid tubs. If you do 100% water changes, the fish can hang out in the Deer Park jugs while you're doing the wc's.

If you have a regular electric air pump with extension cord, take them too if you can. You can hook it up to your hose array and this'll be a lot quieter in your hotel room than the battery pump(s). OTOH, if you have one fish per tub, you could leave the battery pumps off at night if needed because of the pump noise.

Consider giving your hotel room housekeeper a heads-up -- ask her if she can work around the Rubbermaid tubs, not clean that area while you're there. Let her know you'll make sure there's no mess. You def. don't want any cleaning stuff to spray in there by accident!

Hopefully this will help out if you want to take your fish. I sure would! fwiw You won't have to worry about them being in a tiny bucket or alone at home with who-knows-what.

It CAN be done! It's not really hard at all and not so expensive that it's totally impractical. Plus, you can collect the supplies over time, not spend too much at once if you don't want to.

Best wishes, and keep us posted! And again, apologies this wasn't up till way after you were promised.

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  • Regular Member

You're welcome. Hopefully, hopefully this will be helpful! Best of all will be if it's unneeded; you know, no hurricanes...

If there is a need, hopefully it'll help you keep your all your fish friends safe while their humans do what they have to do. We haven't had to evacuate (sincere spiritual thanks, btw) but this worked great for us when moving.

A couple further thoughts. If you have a tank planted with stuff like Anubias that doesn't need substrate, the plants can go in a Ziploc with a little water and travel along with you. While you're in exiled in the hotel, they can help with water quality in the Rubbermaid "tanks." Plus, you'll be saving your plants too. AND...you can use the 27- or 30-quart Sterilite/Rubbermaid bins as QT's or for aging water when you aren't having to move or evacuate.

Also, thank you very much for your feedback. Always important -- even better when it's positive!

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Update:

The 2.5 gallon "bottled water" jugs from above will fit inside 27-quart Sterilite clear plastic bins (also fit inside 30-quart Rubbermaid bins). Fwiw the Sterilite ones usually cost a little less.

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I've never had to evacuate, but we did move across country and my fish were fine in 3 large Rubbermaid containers. During the move itself they were transported in 5-gallon buckets then kept in the Rubbermaid for several weeks while we lived with in-laws. I kept all my plants in with them also to provide security and some filtration. Did lots of water changes. These weren't goldies but a variety of tetras, livebearers, catfish and a big angel. It was 2 large tanks worth of fish.

The advantage with hurricanes is you know they're coming. When we lived in Missouri I hated worrying about tornadoes blowing in out of the blue. :no:

Edited by TwinkleToes
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  • Regular Member

I've never had to evacuate, but we did move across country and my fish were fine in 3 large Rubbermaid containers.

When we lived in Missouri I hated worrying about tornadoes blowing in out of the blue. :no:

Hi thanks for posting

Thanks also for the info about your success moving fish this way. It's great -- and kind of a relief -- to read that this worked for somebody else, too.

If you're out of a tornado zone -- is that right? -- congratulations on making it safely into a new situation. Fish owners have enough to worry about, you know? Personally (no fish at the time, would have been that much more stressful!) the unpredictable, unpreventable always concerned me when I lived for a while in the New Madrid fault zone (that's kind of out Missouri way, too, isn't it?). No one there seemed to think they needed seismic-stable houses or buildings. :P

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