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Long Vacation and Feedings
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...ben
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Joined: 27 Jul 2007
Location: Philippines

PostPosted: 2008.02.27(Wed)20:21    Post subject: Long Vacation and Feedings Reply with quote

I have a scheduled vacation coming mid-March, it's gonna be at least 5 days away from home. I was wondering if my fishes can go that long without food, I mean I've read fishes going for a week without food but most of those that I've read are big fish. Mine are Black Phantom Tetras, a Bolivian Ram and some Albino Cories. I don't have an automatic feeder, and getting one is not exactly an easy option. So will my guys make or do I need to make some arrangements?

Comments and suggestions?
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KingFisher
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Joined: 10 Feb 2008
Location: WNY

PostPosted: 2008.02.27(Wed)20:34    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you absolutely cannot get an automatic feeder, I have in the past used the slowly dissolving "weekend feeder" food blocks and have not experienced a problem. I make sure to remove any unused portion when I return home and do a partial water change just to be on the safe side, FYI Walmart sells an automatic feeder for $11. A pack of the weekend feeder blocks is $4.50
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Luna
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Joined: 11 May 2007
Location: St. Louis, MO, USA

PostPosted: 2008.02.27(Wed)20:48    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would personally be wary of going 5 days without food. Some say it is possible, though. There are several ways to go about feeding them while you're gone, and none of them are really "absolute".

KingFisher says the feeder blocks have been successful, but I have heard stories of refusal by fish toward some products or coming back to bad water conditions. If you feel comfortable adding them, go right ahead. (I think if you have a high KH and GH, you will probably be fine. If you in anyway alter them during regular water changes, I would err on the side of caution and not use them.) The new gel feeders from Tetra may be a better choice, but this is where the tales of refusal come from. Either way, experiment with your choice before your trip to see if things go well.

Automatic feeders are a good choice, but can have their own problems. Humidity can gum up the food and prevent it from reaching the water or rot away (but I doubt you'd be gone long enough for it to smell horrible). They can malfunction and dispense all the food, or not dispense any. Again, experiment to see if it works.

Another option is to ask a friend to feed them. I don't think I have to spell disaster here. I wrote very detailed instructions and my fish still got overfed. (3rd party sitter in that case. I'm away from my tanks for a few months. 2nd party sitter knows exactly what to do, but he left for a couple days and set a 3rd party to the tank. 3rd party didn't have a clue.) Rolling Eyes Something that has been suggested to others in the past, and I think it's brilliant, is to aliquot the daily ration of food into those weekly pill boxes. That way, your fish-sitter can just open the day and dump it in.

I think your tank will be okay with any option you feel is right for it. You know it better than we do after all.
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susankatomerit
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Joined: 09 Mar 2005
Location: Tulsa, Ok

PostPosted: 2008.02.27(Wed)21:07    Post subject: Reply with quote

They will be OK for 5 days, Just feed them good the day before and do a good water change. If you have live plants in the tank there is also some microscopic creatures that live on the plants that they will eat.

As soon as you get home feed them, and will probably be ready for another water change
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Darkblade48
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Joined: 21 Jun 2004
Location: Yokohama, Japan

PostPosted: 2008.02.27(Wed)21:53    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think a good alternative to the already mentioned methods is to get a friend (that keeps fish, preferably) to come in on the 3rd day that you are away and feed them. This way, your fish will be without food for only 2 days at a time.
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Pete Harcoff
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Canada

PostPosted: 2008.02.27(Wed)21:57    Post subject: Reply with quote

Luna wrote:
Something that has been suggested to others in the past, and I think it's brilliant, is to aliquot the daily ration of food into those weekly pill boxes. That way, your fish-sitter can just open the day and dump it in.


That's what I do and it worked like a champ.
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...ben
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Joined: 27 Jul 2007
Location: Philippines

PostPosted: 2008.02.28(Thu)1:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the input guys. Looks like I have to go out of my way and check out a couple of auto-feeders. Folks I can trust with the house and pets will be out for vacation too, it's a National Holiday here (the Lenten Season). So a sitter is out of the question. Will probably also check out those alternative fish foods recommended here.
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fishlover888
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Joined: 20 Dec 2006

PostPosted: 2008.02.28(Thu)13:10    Post subject: Reply with quote

Auto feeder is a good thing to have. Last time I went for 5 WEEKS (yes, weeks, not days) of vacation and all my discus had no problem. Go on line and you can order for some good quality ones, like Ehiem made.
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Theresa1
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Joined: 14 Jan 2008
Location: Oulu, Finland

PostPosted: 2008.02.28(Thu)13:29    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another tip about friend feeders: When I let my mom alone with the tanks for a longer time the first time, I said: "OK, why don't you learn to feed frozen food now?"

Of course she was afraid in the beginning... But sticking to rules like one cube or half a cube per day is much easier for people that are not sure how to dose. Also it's not going to be so super bad for the water if frozen food might get overdosed as it is the case with flake food.

Now over the whole year... my mom doesn't even have any dry food at home now. She learned quite quickly. Wink
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Luna
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Joined: 11 May 2007
Location: St. Louis, MO, USA

PostPosted: 2008.02.28(Thu)21:02    Post subject: Reply with quote

...ben wrote:
Thanks for the input guys. Looks like I have to go out of my way and check out a couple of auto-feeders. Folks I can trust with the house and pets will be out for vacation too, it's a National Holiday here (the Lenten Season). So a sitter is out of the question. Will probably also check out those alternative fish foods recommended here.


That's no fun. Good luck finding a feeder. I hope it works well for you.
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