Vacation with fish that won't take pellets/flakes

BitFix

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In January I'll be traveling for about 3 weeks, my tank can survive that time period without maintenance and I do have an auto feeder for my fish, but my Bangai i Cardinal refuses to take pellets or flakes, he only eats frozen foods.
I don't think I'm able to have someone come and feed him frozen while I'm away and no fish store near me will keep fish for a short period of time.
What would be the best course of options in this case? Would he survive that time without food, since they are mouthbrooders? Should I try and found another hobbyist to house him? Any other suggestions?
 

Tiger Brown

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You don't have anyone at all that could come in even 3 days a week and feed your tank? What I do is take a plastic cup, like a solo cup, I put some fresh water in the bottom and then cut up some of my frozen food and put in the cup. Cup goes in the freezer. The kid that takes care of my tank takes the cup out, squeezes it to enable the food-sicle to release and then he dumps it into the tank. The ice melts and the frozen food comes out and the fish love it. Super easy, anyone could do it.
 

TJDSEKULA

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Set up a wet food feeder (I plan on setting one up in the near future) small dosing pump I was planning a chemtec 3gpd variable speed their small, cheap, and have 3/8" lines. The foot valve will need to be modified by removing the screen. Mix food into water and add a cheap powerhead. Drill a small fridge so you can keep the food chilled and pump it into the tank. Put the pump on a timer and do a few test runs to ensure the correct dose.
 

eggplantparrot

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when I went out of country for a month I got a couple of dollar store ice cube trays and mixed up an approximation of my daily feeding in each cube, including phyto for my feather dusters. ofc I did have someone to feed every day but it was as simple as turning off the return and popping 1 cube in, and that's it.
 
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BitFix

BitFix

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You don't have anyone at all that could come in even 3 days a week and feed your tank? What I do is take a plastic cup, like a solo cup, I put some fresh water in the bottom and then cut up some of my frozen food and put in the cup. Cup goes in the freezer. The kid that takes care of my tank takes the cup out, squeezes it to enable the food-sicle to release and then he dumps it into the tank. The ice melts and the frozen food comes out and the fish love it. Super easy, anyone could do it.
That's an amazing idea. I do have some friends that live near by, but they are usually very busy, so I don't know how often they would be able to come. What's the least often I can feed him, but keep him healthy? Three times a week?
 

zsxking

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Cardinal can be pretty stubborn on taking pellets.

If you really can't get anyone to come even once a week to put some frozen, the best I would do is to fed it more before you go, to fatten it up. It would be probably fine out of 3 weeks without feeding, because that's what happen when they breed. The male carry the egg in its mouth for 3~4 weeks, during which it eat nothing, and they come out fine. I had a pair breeding several years ago. One time they do it like 3 times consecutively, with only couple days in between. At the end the male was getting obviously thin so I have to separate the couple up to fatten up the male. So I think it can survive that. Also it might be able to find some snack here or there in the tank.
 
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TJDSEKULA

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Most healthy fish will be fine skipping as much as a week of feeding unless your talking about super high metabolism stuff like dragonets or seahorses. If you can get someone there a few times a week they should be fine. I always pre portion out fish food even if it's dry, each of my tanks will have little disposalable shot glasses labeled Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, etc sitting on top so there's no question what goes in each day. Nonreefers are very prone to over feed when left with the task. Watching the fish eat is fun and they want you to return to fat happy well taken care of fish ;)
 

jsvand5

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I'm afraid he may starve and cause an ammonia spike. I don't even think be recognized pellets as food.
Unless your tank is extremely small, one cardinal dying isn’t going to cause an ammonia spike (assuming you have some type of cleanup crew). Even without a cleanup crew it won’t be anything significant.
 

TJDSEKULA

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Not that more than longer than a week will kill the fish, that's just my personal cut off. If I'm going away for a week or less I don't even bother having a fish sitter. If it's over a week I make sure someone can stop on at least once a week, it also helps ensure that they don't overfeed the tank ;)
 

zsxking

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That's an amazing idea. I do have some friends that live near by, but they are usually very busy, so I don't know how often they would be able to come. What's the least often I can feed him, but keep him healthy? Three times a week?
Anything from once a week or more will be enough to get them through till you back.
 

TheShrimpNibbler

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Not that more than longer than a week will kill the fish, that's just my personal cut off. If I'm going away for a week or less I don't even bother having a fish sitter. If it's over a week I make sure someone can stop on at least once a week, it also helps ensure that they don't overfeed the tank ;)
Yeah, I had a friend who fed my tank while I was gone and he overfed. I had about twice as much algae as when I left.
 
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BitFix

BitFix

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Thanks for all the help! I'm a lot less stressed about him now. I will try to get a tank sitter to come a few times a week, if that's not an option I will just have to fatten him up and pray he stops being so picky.
 

lapin

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Find a boy or girl scout in the hood. Offer to pay them. Even better teach them about keeping a reef tank.
In January I'll be traveling for about 3 weeks,
 

TheShrimpNibbler

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Thanks for all the help! I'm a lot less stressed about him now. I will try to get a tank sitter to come a few times a week, if that's not an option I will just have to fatten him up and pray he stops being so picky.
Do you have a decent amount of pods in the tank? I’ve had fish live on amphipods for weeks at a time before. Also, where do u live? Someone here might be able to tank sit for you.
 

dhof

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I still use version 2 of this liquid feeder with DOS every day and it works flawlessly. I’m using reef nutrition artic pods in it but I bought some of their liquid brine and that should work well too. If money is not a barrier it might be a good solution for you.
 

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