How to move with fish?

With an overwhelming number of tasks to complete before moving day arrives, the process of moving house is a challenge in itself even without having to tackle logistical issues with an increased level of difficulty, such moving pets across the country. All of your cutest pet companions /dogs, cats, birds, rabbits and fish/ are nothing less than sheer delight to have and pure joy to behold in your current home. However, when the relocation piece of news hits you, one of your major concerns is how to transport your pets safely to your new home.

If you’re a proud owner of a fish tank full of lovely fishies, you will have every right to ask yourself, “How do I move with fish?” as moving with fish long distance will present some special challenges for you.

What to do with fish when moving

The very first task ahead of you is to decide what to do with fish when moving house. Naturally, you would love to keep each and every little fish you own and continue to enjoy them in your new house, together with their spacious fish tank. And yet, to be selfish by only thinking of your needs is definitely the wrong approach here. The decision about what to do with your fish when you move should also be based on what’s best for your silent finned friends.

Take into consideration the fact that fish are very easily stressed when taken out of their familiar surroundings. The total lack of appetite of your dear pets while they are being moved from one house to another will be the least of your worries. Sadly enough, the survival rate of fish on the move is discouragingly low.

If you happen to be moving across town or to a neighboring state, then you might as well pull off the complicated mission of moving your fish to a new home. However, moving across country with fish to a new residence that is relatively far away from your current home can easily prove fatal for the delicate little creatures. This is why, depending on your specific relocation data, consider giving away your pet fish to the right person if you’re moving to distant part of the country.

How to move a fish tank

If you have reached the conclusion that taking your fish with you is the right thing to do under the circumstances, then you should also know that moving a fish tank to a new house can be a rather difficult task. And yet, nothing is impossible when it comes to moving, so here’s how to move an aquarium with fish in 11 steps.

  • Step 1. Leave the job of disassembling your fish tank for last right before you start your relocation trip. This way, you will minimize the time your poor fish spend in mobile containers and bad water conditions.
  • Step 2. Speaking of mobile containers, get hold of several 5-gallon buckets but make sure they are perfectly clean /preferably brand new /, opaque /to decrease the activeness of your fish and thus reduce their level of stress/ and equipped with secure lids /to avoid water splashes/.
  • Step 3. Drain some of your fish tank water with the help of a syphon hose and pour it into the moving containers.
  • Step 4. Catch your poor fish one by one with the fish net and place them carefully into the moving receptacle. Too many or larger fish pieces will usually mean that you need to divide your pet friends into several containers.
  • Step 5. Our tips on moving house with a fish tank continue with taking care of your fish house. Not having left a single fishie in the aquarium, it’s time to take down the accessories and the decorations of the tank. Life plants need water as well to survive the move, so get ready another temporary habitat for them.
  • Step 6. All decorative elements and aquarium accessories should go into boxes but not before you wrap them well in packing paper and bubble wrap. Handle and pack all heaters, chillers, pumps, filters, tubes, light fixtures, etc. as fragile items, for that’s exactly what they are.
  • Step 7. Drain all the remaining water from the tank as even small amounts of liquid inside it could cause its bottom to crack or even shatter. Also, remove any gravel that your fish aquarium may have and place it inside suitable moving containers.
  • Step 8. If you own a relatively small fish tank, you may as well pack it safely with sufficient layers of bubble wrap and transport it to your new home as it is. However, larger fish aquariums may have to be disassembled to its fundamental elements before transport. Contact your local pet shop if you’re not sure how to take apart your big fish tank or even better – contact your local moving company for adequate professional assistance. Remember that while professional movers will not be willing to move your fish across the country, they will be more than ready to give you a helping hand with the transportation of your larger aquarium.
  • Step 9. Our tips for moving with fish will end with the last three steps of moving with pet fish. As soon as you reach your new home, position the fish tank to its perfect spot /clean, level, firm, protected against direct sunlight and close to convenient electrical outlets/, return the gravel back to the tank bottom, set up the required aquarium accessories, re-fill the container with the original water from the buckets and then place back the decorations carefully.
  • Step 10. Net your finned friends from their temporary mobile homes and release them extremely carefully into the readied tank. Also, transfer any remaining water and top off the aquarium with de-chlorinated water if needed. Wait at least an hour before turning on the tank heater so that the water temperature has had a chance to equalize properly.
  • Step 11. Finally, don’t forget to check on your beloved pet fish frequently in the next few days to make sure they are feeling just fine.

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