Tank swap...what do I do with fish during move???


New member
Ok so right now I have a 65g FOWLR with HOB skimmer and cannister filter. Needless to say, I hate them both. I am in the process of DIYing a 20L sump with a Sicce Syncra 3.0 return pump and a SC 150 protein skimmer with a center fuge. I will be buying a new tank since this one is not drilled. It will have a corner over flow and will obviously be drilled. My biggest concern is what to do with the fish/inverts overnight when the new sand is waiting to settle.

Stocking list:

-Ocellaris Clown
-Diamond Watchman Goby
- Mccoskers flasher wrasse
-Banggaii Cardinalfish


-10 or so Trochus
- 2 Nassarius
-Some ceriths
-Dwarf blue legged hermits
- 1 Skunk Cleaner shrimp and 1 Bloodred fire shrimp
- 1 emerald crab

Should I put fish in 1 5g bucket and all inverts in another 5g bucket? Will they last all night? Will they attack each other? What should I put in the puckets? (ie. small heater..airstone etc.) Please everyone tell me your opinions!!!!!

Dr. Reef

Dr. Reef at ur service
RC Sponsor
u can put them in a 5 gal bucket as long as u have a heater in it and a small pump to keep water circulating. if its too hot in ur area then bring the setup inside to keep water at 78-82 range. keep eye on ammonia and have enough water ready to do few water changes if required.airstone will not be a bad idea.


New member
Temperature shouldn't be a problem at all for me. Should I split the inverts and fish into 2 seperate buckets? They will only be in there overnight (8hrs or so) because thats how long i assume the sand should take to settle. The liverock will already be in the tank.


Staff member
RC Mod
With that nice pretty tank I'm sure you've spent budget, but get a qt tank: all your specimens can go in there with an ordinary filter, a jump screen (for that wrasse) [eggcrate will do, or some plastic needlepoint canvas] a heater, and adequate aeration (bubbler behind eggcrate will work.) You'll be busy with setup, and you may need to let that new tank cycle for a few days: an overturned or new sandbed even with old water and well-established rock, can take 5 days or more to sort itself into good order and set up. Not a long cycle, but definitely a cycle. Also---nothing ever goes as fast as you think, so you could use the old tank to hold them---set up the new, and just move the water, rock and sand over, to help the system set up asap. I'd say bucket the fish and inverts while you set up your old tank as the qt, bare-bottom, and with new water. Then be prepared for a minicycle in the new tank.


New member
I used a bunch of 32 gallon tubs from home depot. I put a few rocks in to hide in, a maxi jet 1200, and a heater. That will keep them alive for however long it takes.
You would be ok with a 20 gallon IMO.