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Acclimation for fish bought online?


Grizzly
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Hey all I’m curious on people’s process for acclimating fish you bought online. Now when I get fish from my LFS  I just float the bag then plop and drop but I ordered pea puffers from across the country and don’t know if ph or anything is different from my water so would it be smart to drip acclimate them ? Or does it not matter?

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I temperature acclimate then open the bag and test the water to see how different it is from my tank. So far, the only thing I've felt needed more acclimation than that was cherry shrimp, and I basically just followed the instructions from the shipper. I've never needed to drip acclimate anything. We have hard water here, and most of the fish I order in come from neutral to softer water.

BTW, the reason I stopped being too slow about acclimation is the fact the water in the bags always tests very high in nitrate. I don't want the fish sitting in that any longer than necessary. Once it hits open air, I've read online that the nitrate becomes more toxic. Not sure if that's altogether true or not, but I don't want to take chances.

All that said, I've never had pea puffers, so I don't know if they're ultrasensitive or not to sudden changes in water parameters. Hopefully someone who has experience specifically with them will chime in.

Oh, another note - I never dump the water from the bag into my tank, even the quarantine tank. I net the fish to transfer them. That way, the only nasties that end up in the tank are those directly on the fish. Anything free-floating in the water itself doesn't end up in the tank.

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I do temperature aclimation and plop and drop all online orders. Nearly all of my stuff comes from online due to my location up here.

I have ordered from aquahuna, a retailer in oregon, a retailer in boulder colorado, and pretty much every water parameter through aquabid purchases.  I've also had in person trades from utah water as well. All of those were plop and drop.

Temperature aclimation and plop and drop has had no issues for me so far regardless of the location the fish came from. I have done drip before for shrimp etc but i think that is mostly a peace of mind shrimp method for me because thats the direction i get on shrimp from the sellers. 

I have not tested the bag water vs my tanks since the nitrate in the bags is assumed excessive on arrival I just get them in clean fresh water fastest with the plop and drop method. 

 

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I'd say unless you are dealing with pH or salinity sensitive fish not to worry to much and use Cory's method which I believe @Dawn T outlined in their post.

 

I don't believe pea puffers fall into the category of pH sensitive fish so as long as your water is within their ideal parameters, you can likely assume that the above method will work.

 

Moving african lake cichlids, brackish fish, stingrays, or saltwater fish requires drip acclimation.

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On 7/27/2021 at 10:06 AM, Biotope Biologist said:

Moving african lake cichlids

Interesting!  I've always been told that rift lake cichlids are the exact wrong species to drip acclimate because of the high pH creating the potential for ammonia rather than ammonium.  I'm not saying you are wrong.  I'm just saying from what I've been told, I plop and drop mine.  So far so good.  If I am wrong, I hope my luck doesn't run out.  😬

On 7/27/2021 at 8:32 AM, gardenman said:

When I get fish from an online vendor, I follow their acclimation instructions whether I agree with them or not and document everything. That way if there is an issue, I can show it wasn't my fault.

^^^ This! 💯

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@OnlyGenusCaps maybe "requires" is a strong word! I do not know what procedures different people go through, however at chain pet store I worked at in college, we had to drip acclimate the african cichlids because the bags of fish water they arrived in had a pH of 6.0-7.0. I was lucky enough to work with a cast of people who ignored corporate so we actually pulled the African Lake Cichlids off the main filter and gave them their own closed system with appropriate sand and decor. Our pH sat at about 7.8-8.0. So what we would do is add more ammo-lock, drop the temperature even further to approximately 70 degrees, and drip acclimate on one of our rolling carts. We had a plastic container that all african fish bags would be dumped into. We minimized loss this way, and had healthier looking African Cichlids. I do not believe we bought fish from reputable vendors either seeing as most fish were misidentified and also had tadpoles and perch or sunfish in the bags with them. We only did this because we were having issues with large die offs of the frontosa cichlid and psuedotrophes, our biggest sellers.

 

 

I have included a graph for clarity: FAN (% of TAN) at different temperatures and pH values | Download  Scientific Diagram

Edited by Biotope Biologist
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On 7/27/2021 at 12:00 PM, Biotope Biologist said:

the bags of fish water they arrived in had a pH of 6.0-7.0. I was lucky enough to work with a cast of people who ignored corporate so we actually pulled the African Lake Cichlids off the main filter and gave them their own closed system with appropriate sand and decor. Our pH sat at about 7.8-8.0. So what we would do is add more ammo-lock, drop the temperature even further to approximately 70 degrees, and drip acclimate on one of our rolling carts

I have no doubt that would work!  My pH runs about 8.5 and I have no ammo-lock.  That might be the difference right there.  I am also super picky about where I get my fish.  Patient.  And picky.  So they are probably arriving to me in decent shape anyhow. 

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