There are lots of questions that will run through your mind concerning the well-being of your fish if you keep one as a pet. This concern is perfectly natural as you do not want anything to happen to your fish, and you have their safety in mind.
One of the questions that might puzzle you as a fish owner is “do I take my fish out when cleaning the tank or not?”. This is a valid question considering fish require water to stay alive, and taking them out of their natural environment can be shocking and can have dangerous consequences to them. Now let’s do our best to answer that question.
If you decide to clean your fish tank, you do not need to completely remove your fish, especially if you own a large aquarium. Removing your fish from the tank can cause them stress or even make them sick as they do not like being disturbed. To avoid having to remove your fish from their tank often, you should keep the tank clean by changing the water in it regularly and cleaning the gravel or sand substrate at intervals.
This handy syphon pump is a great tool to have indoors for when you plan on a water change.
If you maintain your tank correctly, there will be no need to clean it extensively more than once in 6 months. Taking care of fish is far different from taking care of other regular pets. It is worth noting that the conditions in your fish tank must always be at an optimal level if you want your fish to stay healthy.
Taking good care of the tank by cleaning it at regular intervals is the perfect way of maintaining conditions in the fish tank optimal. If you take good care of your tank, you would not need to change the water in it all at once.
How To Safely Take Your Fish Out When Cleaning The Tank.
If you have a small tank, you may need to remove your fish when cleaning it so that you do not mistakenly injure them. Even if you have a large fish tank, it would require extensive cleaning at least once in six months, and you would have to remove your fish then. However, as stated earlier, removing your fish from the tank is not very good for them because it can shock and stresses them. You should, therefore, be careful when taking your fish out.
You can follow the following steps to remove your fish from the tank without causing them too much stress.
- Remove and clean your tank decorations such as your artificial plants first. It would be best if you cleaned them using clean gloves and properly washed hands before cleaning the aquarium so that your fish would not have to stay long outside it.
- Clean a container that is large enough to allow your fish to swim around and is also high enough that your fish will not be able to jump out of it accidentally. Do not use soap or detergent to wash the container because they contain chemicals that could be harmful to your fish.
- Fill the container halfway using some of the water from your fish tank. It is necessary to use the water from your fish tank and not tap water because fish are sensitive to differences in temperature and pH, and you do not want to shock your fish. Make sure that the water that you put in the container is deep enough for your fish to swim around in easily without scraping the container’s bottom.
- The next stage is a very delicate one, which involves removing your fish from the aquarium, and you should carry it out as gently as possible. Using a net, scoop out your fish from the aquarium one at a time. Cover the top of the loss with your hand once a fish is in it so that it would be unable to jump out of it. Dip the net in the clean vessel containing water from the fish tank and let the fish swim out from it.
How To Clean Your Fish Tank Properly.
Cleaning your fish tank is necessary for the health and wellbeing of your fish. Larger aquariums are easier to clean than small tanks or bowls because it is easier to keep the water in a large aquarium stable.
To clean your fish tank properly – you need a cheap but effective fish tank cleaning kit – then follow the following steps:
- Gather your supplies together: In preparation for the cleaning, gather everything you need to clean the aquarium in one place so that you will find it easy to locate anything you need at any point. Materials you will need include water testing kits, clean towels, a bucket, a siphon gravel vacuum, an algae scraper and prepared water. For saltwater aquariums, you would also require a salinity probe, a powerhead, and a heater.
- Unplug the electrical elements and decorations in your aquarium: Before starting the cleaning process, make sure you unplug all the electrical elements of your aquarium, such as heaters, pumps, and filters. Also, remove all the artificial plants present in the aquarium if you need to clean them but do not remove live plants as you would interfere with their root growth if you removed them.
- Remove the tank water: The next step is to remove part of the water in the tank using a siphon gravel vacuum. The amount of water you’re going to remove shouldn’t be much; it should be about 10% to 20%. If you use gravel as the substrate for your aquarium, you will need to clean it also. To clean the gravel, suck up small amounts of it with the siphon. The waste present in the aquarium will be sucked through the hose into the bucket while the gravel will fall back into the aquarium. To stop gravel from getting into the tube, you can block the end of the tube with one of your fingers, preferably your thumb, to reduce the rate of siphoning.
- Remove the algae in the aquarium: Using the magnetic algae cleaner, attach one of the magnets inside the aquarium, and the other outside it on the same side. Then gently drag the magnetic cleaner outside the aquarium along the surface of the glass. The one inside would follow and would remove most of the algae present in the aquarium. For the cleaning of artificial plants and other decorations in the aquarium, you can use a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean them in the water you siphoned out of the tank. Never use soap to clean your aquarium as the chemicals in it can be toxic to your fish.
- Replace the water in the tank: After carrying out the steps above, you are set to top up the remaining water in the tank. Add the same quantity of water that was removed from the tank back to it. For freshwater aquariums, dechlorinate the water before you add it to the tank. Also, make sure that the temperature of the water you are adding is close to that of the remaining water in the tank. For saltwater aquariums, on the other hand, you would need to check the ammonia level, pH level, and salt level of the water you are adding to the tank and make sure they are normal before putting your fish back in.
- Put your fish back in the tank: After washing the tank, you are set to transfer your fish back to it. Taking the fish one at a time, gently use your fishnet to catch them and return them to the aquarium.
Removing your fish from the fish tank is inevitable now and then, particularly if you want to clean the tank thoroughly. However, you should carry out this process as gently as possible so that you would not harm your fish. Also remember that, if you maintain your fish tank properly, you would not need to clean the tank extensively all the time.