Saltwater Aquarium Care While On Vacation
Without a doubt, saltwater reefkeeping is a fun and rewarding hobby. It requires patience and a lot of care but as you watch your corals grow and transform into an underwater oasis, you can’t help but feel like you’re on a tropical vacation. But what should you do when you actually do go on vacation? Worrying about the health of your tank in your absence is understandable. After all, so much time, money, and energy have gone into keeping it healthy. Luckily, there are steps you can take to ensure your tank receives the proper aquarium care while you are away.
Vacation Aquarium Care
If you find yourself traveling for business or leaving for a fun-filled vacation, there are a number of options to keep your finned friends happy and healthy. Ideally, a friend or neighbor can check on your tank once a day for you. They can quickly fix problems resulting from a tripped breaker, power outage, broken pump, or water overflow. If you’re unable to find someone, you can still plan ahead by automating some of the day-to-day operations.
5 Tips to Automate Your Saltwater Tank Care
- Automatic Dosing: If you have a reef tank, your tank will need daily supplemental doses of calcium, alkalinity, and magnesium. Fortunately, there are plenty of automatic dosing pumps for your tank such as the Neptune Systems Apex Aquarium Controller Kit. The Neptune System will even let you monitor your water chemistries from afar. While some units can get quite expensive, there are less expensive options out there. Comparatively, it would likely cost less than replacing the livestock in your aquarium.
- Automatic Fish Feeders: While many saltwater hobbyists feed their livestock with frozen food such as brine shrimp and mysis shrimp, there are dry pellet and flake options available. The dry options work well in a daily automatic feeder to keep your fish happy and healthy while you are away. Check your local saltwater fish store for supplies.
- Automatic Water Top-offs: If you don’t already have an automatic top-off system, consider setting one up. If that is not an option, you may be able to get away with adding a couple of extra gallons of water based on the typical evaporation of your tank.
- Automatic Lighting: Most saltwater aquarium LED lights come with built in timers. However, if you are still running your tank on T5’s, a simple $6 timer from the hardward store can automate this process for you.
- Keeping the Tank Cleaning: Make sure your tank and filtration are clean before you leave on a long trip. You may even want to add some extra snails or crabs to your clean-up crew to work double duty while you’re away.
If you will be away from home for an extended period of time, considering hiring a professional to care for your tank. Aquatic Dreams in Clearfield, Utah specializes in maintenance care and tank sitting services. They can clean your tank, test water chemistries, feed fish, and handle any unforeseen problems that may arise. Contact your local saltwater fish store at (801) 525-0033 to schedule a tank sitting service before your next trip.