Preparing your aquarium for COVID-19 isolation


There are unpredictable times ahead for us all. While we have concerns about the health of our loved ones, work and paying bills, don’t let the care of your aquarium add to your worries. Here, we outline how to maintain your tank as a slice of calm in an uneasy world.

If you’re anything like me, there’ll already be a collection of dried aquarium food in your cupboard. Although this will obviously be of great importance in the event of self-isolation, it’s not the only thing to bear in mind.

Those of us keeping undemanding fish which are suited to our tap water parameters have an easier time. However, to be sure of maintaining a tank for a possible 12 weeks of isolation, you’ll need more than just a few different tubs of food and a big bottle of dechlorinator. Think of those essential items you take for granted, such as your heater or any impellers that could break. Grab a spare of each now, before you need it and find that you can’t get it.

A basic store of medications should also be kept in your aquarium cabinet. Even if new fish aren’t being introduced, there is still the possibility of a power cut bringing on a bout of white spot or a bacterial infection. Arm yourself with a selection of anti-parasitic and anti-bacterial treatments, so if any health issues crop up, they don’t become so advanced that they result in a wipe-out of your stock.

Although we take access to mail order supplies for granted, we must consider that business and transport facilities may suffer at some point. There could also be future staffing issues and possible restrictions on movement, and so stocking up now would be highly advisable.

Aquarists who use absorbent filter media, replaceable cartridges, filter floss, water buffers and additives should also ensure that they have some extra supplies. Those with fish dependant on live foods should be initiating home cultures, and where R.O or HMA filters are habitually used, some spare filter cartridges and membranes should also be kept.

In the event that your immune system is inhibited by the COVID-19 virus, the last thing you want are further health complications. It is therefore vital to adhere to strict hygiene procedures such as avoiding sucking on syphon tubes, cleaning your hands thoroughly after a water change, and if you have open cuts on your arms or hands, ensure that you wear full-length protective gloves.

As the concerns and stresses of the COVID-19 situation increase, we’re going to need the calm and tranquillity of our aquaria all the more, so let’s be prepared for their up-keep.