Transportation and Acclimation Procedures to keep you and your fish safe.

Many times I have found the need to remind my customers of the importance of proper transportation and acclimation procedures for their new fish and aquarium pets.

Once the fish is put in the bag and it's sealed, unless pure oxygen is properly put into the bag with it, the fish will usually have about 20 - 30 minutes worth of oxygen in there with them.  Temperature is also important, and will drop quickly in winter months in cold climates.  The reverse of this is true, also.  In warm weather, temperatures in the bag will climb rapidly.  I always advise taking your new pet home immediately after leaving the store.

When we arrive home, it's important to know how to introduce our new fish to the aquarium properly.  If we ignore proper procedures, illness, undue stress, shock, and even death can be the end result.

The bag will need to float in the aquarium for approximately 15 minutes.  This may vary if special or extreme changes are present.  The bag must be opened as soon as possible, and left to float open in the aquarium.  Every 2 - 3 minutes a small amount of aquarium water needs to be mixed into the bag with the fish.  This is a step that many miss.  The conditions in the tank the fish came from will be different than the conditions in your tank.  Fish and aquarium pets have the ability to adjust in most cases, but this needs to be done gradually to avoid putting their bodies into shock.  After 15 minutes and 3 - 4 "dips" of the new water, then it is safe to release the fish into it's new home.

Remember that your new fish is frightened and stressed.  Many fish will not calm and adjust to their new home for at least 24 - 48 hrs.  After this time they will tend to get more color, and settle into a normal activity pattern in your tank.  The best thing we can do for them is to allow them time to adjust with the least amount of stress.  Turning off the lights on the tank for the remainder of that day/night can help a fish settle in much faster.

Ensuring your fish a safe trip home is the first step in success!  


(c)Copyright 2004 Dawn Rudoll