Beginners Guide to Acclimation and Quarantine

My goal is to provide a simplified guide on how to acclimate and do a basic quarantine of fish. The quarantine method I am recommending is not...
  1. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Thanks, I appreciate it.

    Personally, I would set up the 40g breeder and get a 10g in addition. Use the 10g to acclimate/medicate/copper then transfer them to the 40g for additional observation. The small volume of the 10g allows you to use less salt and meds to treat and raise salinity. Use the larger 40g to reduce stress, improve feeding, and give an additional observation period prior to putting them in the DT. As I tried to point out in my article, what I lay out here is really intended for people new to the hobby with smaller tanks. This is an absolute bare minimum that I would recommend. Since you have the 40g already, and don't mind getting a 10g, I would do more than the bare minimum.
     
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  2. Chris Wells

    Chris Wells Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I like it. Thanks!
     
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  3. nycluis718

    nycluis718 Well-Known Member

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    I am starting a qt tank and have a few questions...

    i have the aquaclear filter and it came with sponge, carbon and bio media

    when starting the tank cycle, do i the bio media in the aquaclear filter?

    if yes, then do i remove the bio media when i dose medication like prazi?
    do i need to replace the bio media after each fish qt or will the carbon help clean this media out?
    IMG_3039.JPG

    Also if setting up a new sump would you do the traditional sump with filter sock or the triton "suggested " sump with return going into chaeto in 1st baffle? does it matter?
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2017
  4. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I normally just use the sponge. It has more than enough surface area for the bacteria. It is important to not overstock your QT tank though. Keep it clean by netting out any leftover food and rinse the sponge out every few days.

    I like having the sock filter in the first section. From a nutrient perspective, I understand wanting the chaeto before the skimmer. I like having the chaeto after the skimmer so I don't suck pods into the skimmer before they can get into the DT. Like so many things in this hobby, lots of ways to do it and many of them will actually work! ;)
     
  5. CJRIZZOTTI

    CJRIZZOTTI Active Member

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    I picked up a few yellow tangs and a powder blue a week ago all been in quarantine tank chilling just wanted to know how long to keep em in there i treated with copper just cause but no signs of nothing but healthy fish
     
  6. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    If you treated them with copper for 30 days, I recommend an additional 2 weeks of observation prior to adding them to the DT. If you have completed that period you should be fine to add them.
     
  7. Maritimer

    Maritimer Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Leader CTARS Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Y'know how sometimes, something comes along at just the time you _really_ need it, and it's a precise and perfect fit?

    This is one of those times.

    I generally buy fish from LFS (sometimes order online from NY Aquatic, but he's close enough that I can generally set up an appointment for local pickup), but haven't really had fish shipped ... until this week.

    Got three beautiful wrasses arriving in just a few hours. Going to go back and read this again . . .

    Thanks, Brew12!

    ~Bruce
     
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  8. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Glad you found it helpful!

    Just remember, the quarantine part of this is the absolute bare minimum I feel a beginner should do. I would recommend more advanced QT, but you already know that! ;)
     
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  9. Maritimer

    Maritimer Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Leader CTARS Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Still beats "dump & hope" by a country mile . . .

    It was the acclimation part of the article that I needed today, and it worked a charm. Took about an hour to test all three bags and reduce salinity in the 40-B to match the 1.014 - 1.0145 that the fish came in at. (LiveAquaria had said 1.020 - 1.025). On a lark, I tested the shipping water for copper - API's kit found no copper, so it may be that Prime would have been OK to use in my case. Wouldn't trust that from any shipper without testing.

    As the ambient light in the room begins to fade, all three wrasses are beginning to explore - and to dart at bits of frozen food.

    ~Bruce
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2017
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  10. MT_is_a_Pisces

    MT_is_a_Pisces Member

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    For the QT do you leave it running after quarantine, acclamation and transfer to DT. Or do you shut it done until the next livestock is acquired?
     
  11. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I normally shut it down. The nice thing about not losing fish to disease (practicing proper QT) is that I rarely buy fish.
     
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  12. Dr0pl3r

    Dr0pl3r Member

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    Very nice thread you have going here, I learned alot! I have a question for you. Im from Norway, where QT is very rare. Both in the stores and at home. We usually get healthy fish becouse of good distributors in EU and their QT. But sometimes we get sick fish aswell. I recently started working in a saltwater store, where QT isnt a part of the routine. I like the safety with QT and will suggest to my boss that we set up some kind of QT for our new fish. What would you suggest we do? We got fish-only holding tanks with salinity at 1.020. Our routine is observation in 7 days before sale. Doesnt sell obviously sick fish.
     
  13. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Doing QT at the retail level is very problematic. It may also not be in your clients or the fishes best interest. I'm sure I will be beat own for saying this, but my impression is that the average reefer in Europe does a much better job maintaining their systems than the average reefer in the US. I don't think flake and pellet food is as common. I also feel that they are more attentive to their systems. Because of this, the natural immune system of the fish can do a much better job fighting off diseases once they get past the shipping stress. Here in the US it isn't unusual to see new hobbyists put a tang in a 40 gallon tank because they just don't know better.

    If you are still interested in learning more I recommend reaching out to @Humblefish or @melypr1985 as they both have much more retail experience than I do. I'm not trying to discourage you as I feel QT is very important. It is just much easier at the hobbyist level than the retail level.
     
  14. Dr0pl3r

    Dr0pl3r Member

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    Thanks for your input! I do not see us going so far that we put the fish through 30 days of copper and 2 weeks after that. That will be to much cash out the window for the store. But i will reach out to the people you tagged to ask for guidence of wich precautionary steps we can do to keep the healthiest fish possible. Mayby just a hospital for sick fish might be it.

    I see your points about the European reefkeeping vs american. Most of the reasons because of that is just how expensive the hobby is. Its really expensive to keep saltwater tanks in Norway becouse of shipping, tax and CITES papers for import. I think thats the reason why we take better care of our tanks, just to much money invested to dont care. And not to mention the hobby is really small. The biggest facebook group only got 1700 members in it. And i think 5 out of max 12 stores went bankrupt this year. My store is the only store left specialized on saltwater.
     
  15. 100gallonreefer

    100gallonreefer Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the work it took to write this article. Great info!
     
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  16. FloatinBy

    FloatinBy Well-Known Member

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    Very helpful. I almost got a 30 gal biocube for my hospital tank. i know see thats probably way to big and decided on a 12 gal tank. can you do one for more difficult critters like corals and invertebrates as well? like what you recommend dipping them in and whatnot because they cannot have copper meds correct? Im new to saltwater and am trying to learn as much as i can prior to putting critters in my 140gal system. Thank you again for tanking the time to write this up.
     
  17. Xclusive Reef

    Xclusive Reef Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    Hey Brew.... Question I picked up 2 small 1 inch or less clown fish. I added them 2 days ago to my qt tank. they are both eating very little pellets in AM and mysis shrimp in PM. I don't see any sickness, white spots, stringy poo etc, Should I still medicate with prazi and cooper to be safe or observe for few weeks? I am not in a hurry as DT is not ready yet.

    Today I noticed 1 clown fish swimming and going into the PVC pipes etc but the other is just stuck in a corner near the air pump. He looks ok but not sure if its a sign of something to come.
     
  18. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Unfortunately, I need to leave that to others. Well outside of my comfort zone when it comes to sensitive inverts and coral dips.

    I always medicate with copper. I feel this is especially important for fish with thick mucus coats like clowns. They could have ich or velvet and would be unlikely to show much in the way of symptoms. You wouldn't know it was there until you exposed a more sensitive fish to them. Prazi is a fairly easy medication on fish but I may not always do it. If I'm confident after a FW dip they don't have flukes I am just as likely to skip this. I worry about it suppressing their appetite. Prazi is also reef safe (for the most part) so if flukes do get through I could treat them in my DT. I can't do that with ich or velvet.

    As for the behavior... clowns are clowns. I can't figure my clowns out that I've had for a year. They spend almost all their time hanging out at the to top of the tank near the return pipe. They only come to the center of the tank when it is dinner time.
     
  19. Susan Edwards

    Susan Edwards Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    after MV in my tank, and a fallow period, and treatment of surviving fish (which are home now), I've reset up my qt tank which is a 20 gal hex. I used half the water that was in there before as after the treatment period, it was just a holding tank for the survivers. I have the aquaclear 70 & a small canister filter plus a powerhead. I'll be adding a sponge from the DT (Only in there less than 2 weeks) as well.

    I have new live sand, 2 pcs of rock and decorations as I also added some sand and rubble rock I had in bowls on my DT sand bed in order to collect pods for the mandarin I'm getting today. I'll prob. also bring home a couple of clowns. I plan to observe new arrivals for a week and make sure everyone is eating. And have more pods arriving Monday. My goal is to provide a "fancy hotel" for recovering from stress of LFS.

    My question is whether to treat automatically. With the sand, it will be hard to get the right level of copper--had to do so with a sand sifter before (I added new sand and dumped old for this round of QT'ing). I have some CP (chloroquine Phosphate) that I got from a vendor on ebay that I used to treat my scooter blenny. As I'll be getting a mandarin, I'm assuming no copper for that either. I also have prazi and paraguard. Paraguard can also be used as a dip. I also have Rallys on hand. I want the safest, less stressful routine. The QT will remain set up as I will be adding a couple new fish every 6 weeks or so. If I have to use copper, that would mean setting up another qt tank, esp. with the mandarin. I'd like to not have to go buy another tank...

    Should I do a treatment with prazi, followed by paraguard or CP?

    And here is a question I've asked in several threads and can't get an answer. If I treat with prazi, or CP, or even copper in the future, this a guarantee that MV or ick will not make it into my DT?
     
  20. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Nothing is ever a sure thing. There is a suspicion that with so many LFS's running low levels of copper that there may be a copper resistant strain of Ich. I will tell you that no fish will go into my tank without being treated with copper or CP first. Its just not a chance I'm willing to take.

    I would also only treat in a tank set up as a hospital tank. If you can't be positive you are maintaining the correct level of medications you can't be sure of success.
     
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