While a lengthy power outage can be somewhat disruptive to your life, it can really wreak havoc on an aquarium environment. Various pieces of technology are required to maintain a safe, healthy environment for the fish, plants, and other animals in your tank. In order to protect livestock during a power outage, being proactive can help immensely, and you can take several steps during an outage that can protect the animals as well.
Without power, oxygen in the tank will decrease, ammonia will increase, and the temperature could fluctuate. You don’t need to be overly concerned about an outage that only lasts a few minutes, but it is important to protect livestock during a power outage that is expected to last three or more hours.
Following are several steps you can take long before a power outage to ensure that you will be prepared in the event that one does occur.
• Buy a backup generator.
• Keep extra RODI water on hand that you can use to change the water and keep the tank clean in the event a power outage lasts for an extended period of time.
• Buy a battery-operated air pump, and include bottom feeders, rocks, and gravel in your tank as appropriate. All of these assets can help keep the tank clean if the filters stop working.
• Have batteries on hand at all times.
Additional Ways to Protect Livestock During a Power Outage
In addition to keeping an optimal pH level, it’s important to maintain the appropriate temperature of the water as well during an outage. Without the filters in the tank and the air conditioning in your overall home, you run the risk of the water becoming too hot, especially here in Arizona. Floating a bag of ice cubes on top of the water every now and then should help you maintain a comfortable temperature for the fish and other livestock.
However, the temperature may depend on the season and time of day as well. Remember that the lights and heaters won’t work during the power outage, so the water may actually become too cold during the cooler seasons. If you’re concerned about this possibility, wrap a blanket around the outside of the tank. Don’t cover the top.
An important step to protect livestock during a power outage is to avoid feeding them too much. Don’t allow your fish to go hungry, but you can decrease the amount you feed them during the course of the outage. This can help reduce waste and therefore keep ammonia levels in check.