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FAQs about Toxic Water Conditions: Insecticides

Related Articles: Marine Toxic Tank Conditions , General  Marine Maintenance,

Related FAQs: Toxic Situations 1, Toxic Situations 2, Toxic Situations 3Toxic Situations 4Toxic Situations 5, Toxic Situations 6, Toxic Situations 7, Toxic Situations 8, Toxic Situations 9, & FAQs on Toxic Water Conditions by: Unknown Causes, & Endogenous (from inside, e.g. Internal, Organic Causes), Foods, Nutrients, Venomous/Poisonous Tankmates, Wipe-out Syndromes/New Tanks e.g., Exogenous (from outside, External, Inorganic, e.g. Metals): Marine Algaecide Use/Chemical Control, Toxic Copper Use Situations/Troubleshooting, Cleaners, & Troubleshooting/Fixing,

Most household pest remedies are toxic to marine life... and you.

Tank Crash, foreign chemicals introduced-what now?/Toxins 3/2/12
Dear Wet Web Media,
Thank you for your most informative website.  I always come here first for any information.
<Much appreciated.>
The problem I have is with my 70 Gal, 5 year old established reef tank.  I have a maintenance company come every two weeks for water changes and while I was away, they changed the water and my whole tank crashed.  It was
devastation beyond what I could ever have imagined.  I lost almost all my corals and a few fish.  The conclusion I came to is the maintenance person grabbed a paper towel from my garbage that had Frontline flea and tick residue on it, wiped his hands and introduced it into my aquarium.  Even the algae and bristle worms died (I am not sure about the bacteria in the live
<Frontline is an insecticide which contains Methoprene.  Government studies indicate that Methoprene will not result in unreasonable adverse effects on the environment since it degrades rapidly both in water and inert surfaces.  But, this generally occurs after the damage is done so I do have to agree with your assumption that the butler did it.>
What I would really appreciate is advice on the following:  I have done several massive water changes, changed the charcoal and am adding live bacteria on a daily basis.  However, my ammonia levels are still at around 1-2 ppm and I don't know if there are traces of the chemical still left in the aquarium.
<The problem I see with Methoprene is that although it degrades rapidly, especially in sunlight, it degrades into at least 50 minor photolysis products of which some could be dangerous.>
Do you think it will be possible for me to put back my fish and my three corals that survived when the ammonia levels are at 0 ppm or do I need to start all over again from scratch (new live rock, new live sand etc., long  wait until I can add corals)? 
<Definitely wait until the ammonia level reaches zero and I would advise the use of a Poly Filter which should adsorb any chemical residue that may be present.
 Once ammonia level reaches zero, I would add just one coral and observe for a few days before adding the remainder of the livestock.>
Thank you so much, I would be very grateful for any advice you could give me on how to recover (if possible), from such a disaster. Bob may have additional knowledge of this product's dangers and will comment if necessary.>
Best Regards,
<And to you Tina.  James (Salty Dog)>
Re Tank Crash, foreign chemicals introduced-what now?/Toxins 3/2/12

Thank you so much James.
<You're welcome Tina.>
I really appreciate your intelligent answer as it helps to better understand what happened.   Not one website addresses what foreign chemicals can do to a tank (other than cause a massive crash) or what to do afterwards (other than substantial water changes).
I will take your advice and hope to restore my tank to its former glory.
Thank you so much you guys are the best! 
<You're welcome and wish you luck.  James (Salty Dog)>
Best Regards,

Problem-Pest Extermination'¦The Terrestrial Kind (Poison Danger?) -- 09/19/09
Hi guys,
I am gonna have a problem on Monday (21st). My building where I rent an apartment schedule pest extermination (or whatever you call it) in couple of days.
<<I see'¦depending on the 'method' of extermination (fogger, margin spray, etc.) this can be problematic>>
I am worried about my 100g reef. I am gonna turn off my skimmer, I use GAC/GFO dual reactor, close my stand, open all windows.
<<Ah well'¦ If you are able to have your windows open then apparently they won't be fogging (this is good for your tank).
What else could I do to prevent huge problems?
<<You may not really have anything to worry about. If the exterminator is only coming in with a sprayer and treating the floor/wall junctures (very common'¦is where the bugs travel) and keeps the spray itself (usually a fine stream) out of your tank you probably won't have any issues (I have had my house treated in this manner with no problems at all re my reef system)>>
I was thinking about covering my tank with some plastic bags,
<<You could do this>>
but what about oxygen for my fishes and corals???
<<How about running an airstone to the tank through one of those open windows? Doing so, and with plastic over the tank, will create a small positive pressure flow to further prevent any fumes from entering the tank>>
I don't have refugium where I could leave lights on.
<<Not necessary'¦and likely makes protecting the tank a bit easier>>
And I don't think I can tell them to not come to my place in rental apartment? Any ideas?
<<As stated>>
<<Cheers, EricR>>

Flea Infestation on cats, SW tanks...    7/23/08 Hello, <Natalie> We have three aquariums; a 120 gallon stocked with mostly LPS and some fish, a 40 gallon stocked with mushrooms, zoas, and an anemone and some fish, and last a 45 gallon zero edge stocked with clams, feather dusters and a couple fish. The 120 and 40 gallon have skimmers and all the tanks have a refugium. We also have two carbon reactors that rotate between the tanks and all the tanks are plumbed into the house. <Nice> The issue is that we also have two cats and we have gotten fleas and have tried to get rid of them without spraying any chemicals, but the fleas have just flourished and so we have called the pest control company. They will be spraying at ground level only and the sofa. We tried to explain to them that we have reef tanks but they only understood fish tank and told us that we need to cover them with some sort of cloth. We were wondering if maybe completely covering the tanks and stands with plastic and taping it down to try and make it air tight. Then letting a scuba tank slowly bleed into that atmosphere. We are not really sure what to do with the zero edge. <Perhaps a loose fitting piece of polyethylene...> We were thinking maybe turning the pump off covering the tank like the others and putting bubblers in as well. We were wondering if this will work or if you had any ideas comments or concerns with the only one we had. Thank you for the help and your time. Natalie Schneider <I would talk with the pest control company, other sources/services re just trying boric acid on the carpet... plus a treatment applied directly to the cats fur instead. Bob Fenner>

Re: Flea Infestation  7/23/08 Bob, We actually already have been using Frontline on the cat's fur, as well as shampooing them and killing 50+ fleas at a bath. Basically it is a full blown infestation now. You get bit every time you sit down on a piece of furniture or couch or bed or floor. We tried boric acid and it seemed to help in the carpeted area's ( not the tank areas) but didn't really do much for the family room where they are in the couches and chairs, all cloth. <I see... Not fun!> Basically we think we have exhausted all options regarding them other then a regular spraying. Any other advice, does the scuba tank inside the wrapped stand sound okay? <Yes> Or would we be better off extending the skimmer air intakes out the window for fresh air from outside? <Another very good idea> Any other ideas or comments regarding the spraying would be wonderful. Thanks, Natalie <Perhaps a cursory read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/toxinsectcidef.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Pest sprays  6/24/08 INCORRECT Hi, I was referred to you by all-reef, and my question is I am having my home sprayed for fleas and they told me I needed to cover my fish tank for at least 4 hours. <And likely turn off intakes to any air-entraining gear (e.g. Venturis on powerheads, skimmers...)> I have a 75g reef with no cover on it or the sump currently and was wondering what if you had any suggestions. The pest company said a wet tower but I don't think that would be a good idea! Please let me know what you think. Thanks -Nick <There is actually quite a range of "toxicity" from various pest sprays... some are relatively innocuous (pyrethroids for instance), whereas others are real trouble (organophosphates for example). Do write us back with specifics here. Bob Fenner>

Re: pest sprays 6/25/08 Hi Bob, Thanks for the quick response! I'm not sure what spay is actually being used, the pest being killed is fleas not sure if that helps. I will try and find out what they are going to be using, but if not is there any advise you can give me on covering the tank? Please let me know! Thanks -Nick <Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/toxinsectcidef.htm and the linked files above. BobF>

Toxicity of pyrethroids. Yeeikes! - 6/30/08  CORRECTION In the daily FAQ last week, someone wrote in to concerning what was needed to protect their tank while the house was treated by exterminators. The answer given was that it depended on what was being used, with pyrethroids being described as innocuous and organophosphates being a bigger concern. No question about the use of organophosphates being a concern - there is a reason they were the basis of chemical weapons for so long. My question is about pyrethroids being called innocuous. After some spraying around my house and asking the exterminator what he was using, I did some research on pyrethroids. They are relatively innocuous to mammals (the synthetics less so that the natural pyrethrin) but all of them are extremely toxic to aquatic life, invertebrate and vertebrate. Concentrations as in the 1 ppb range have been found to kill 50% of the fish exposed to it (what is called the LC50). There is some mention in the literature about toxicity being somewhat less for higher temperatures (i.e. topical vs. temperate) but you're still looking at a fairly toxic substance as far as the aquarium life is concerned. Is there research regarding marine life that I didn't see that shows that pyrethroids are not something to worry about for the marine aquariums? <Thank you very much for this input. Either in my faulty memory (perhaps in confusion with mammalian toxicity) or ignorance, I mis-spoke re pyrethroid/ins. Will amend/append the prev. email. Bob Fenner>

Termite Treatment  11/1/07 Hi Crew! Well here's another problem I'm having. I have 6 tanks set up in my house. From a 220 down to a 10 gallon. Well my house has dry wood termites and they say it has to be tented. Is there a way I can tent without having to take the tanks down? Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks In Advance! <Ask the folks doing the tenting... Actually not them, but the licensed Pest Control Advisor that works for them... what the specific treatment will involve, and tell them that you have aquariums... Some techniques do not involve toxic chemical application (and you may get away with simply covering your tanks with damp towels)... Others call for taking down, removal... Bob Fenner> Care of fish and aquarium when residence will be fumigated for dry wood termites next week.   7/25/06 I am in need of urgent assistance regarding my tropical fish. I just received notice that my town home in Northern Ca will be treated for termites next week. ( Town home adjacent to mine is in process of sale) I understand the 4 town homes in my cul de sac will be tented and gas infused to permeate all areas to exterminate termites. < I am sorry to hear this, but it is understandable. >   My concern is how do I care for my fish during this procedure? < As much as I know you do not want to read this, I do not want to type this, but here goes... Move the tank! > I have a 150 gallon salt water aquarium which is well established with live rock and 6 large fish ( Most in my care for 5+ years). < Kudos to the diligent and mindful aquarist! > I cannot imagine breaking down this aquarium and keeping these large fish alive for several days. < I understand your pain. You must move the tank. I suggest finding a feed and seed store that caters to cattle/horse keepers. There, you will find Rubbermaid watering troughs that will well suit your needs. I would move everything into the vat, with the exception of the sand bed. Store the vat at a friends house. The sand bed will almost have to be re-cycled, for stirring it up will undoubtedly release undesirable toxins. This should be done in a separate container, with water changes as needed. As for the tank, You could wrap it thoroughly in shrink wrap, and you may not need to move the tank if it is wrapped well. >   Can you advise? < I wish there was an easier answer. Best wishes! RichardB > Thanks

Marine tank move and pesticide concerns   7/25/06 Hi, crew!  Thanks again  for this resource and your help in the past... I have a couple questions for you today.  The first one is pretty easy- I currently have a 20 gal. marine tank with live rock (not sure of the weight, as I acquired the tank from a previous owner, but it covers the back of the tank 2/3 to 3/4 of the way up), a scrappy ocellaris clown ("Blooper"), a blue damsel ("Dex"), a 3-4" T. Crocea clam showing signs of new calcareous growth, Astrea snails, a scarlet skunk shrimp (carrying her second batch of eggs this summer!), mushroom corals, and one Nassarius snail.  I picked up an empty 30 gal. tank and stand for a song, and am going to move this crew to more spacious quarters, after first painting the back of the tank with flat black water-based enamel and a mini-roller, as you suggest- the old tank is mirrored, which I hate.  I want to add a deeper sandbed to the new tank- currently it's in the danger zone of 1-3", would like to aim for 4-5".  Can I move most of the old sand to the new tank, and top off with more? <Yes... but best to place the new on the bottom... the old live on top> Much of the old substrate is coarser than it should be, I believe... crushed coral perhaps (again, it came with the tank from the old owner, so not sure exactly what he started with... tried to find out everything about it, but a language barrier prevented full communication... also, when he suggested adding a yellow tang to the tank because it "would look nice with the other fish" I knew we had a problem. He had had the tank set up for almost a year with no water changes, just freshwater top-ups, and only a small powerfilter on the back for circulation. Yikes! <I'll say... wonder if he ever flushes the toilet... Bad visual!> Took a long time to get those nitrates under control).  I have one 20lb bag of oolitic aragonite, but more will be needed clearly, even with the old substrate to reach an adequate depth.  Can I move much of the old substrate over, and top it off with the finer sand? <Same response> My thoughts are to let the substrate cycle in the filled new tank, transfer the skimmer and one powerhead to the new tank, then arrange most of the live rock around this equipment, add the damsel first to the cycled tank to stake out a territory (he is bullied in the old tank by the clownfish), then move the clown and the shrimp, and the canister filter to the 30 gal.  Does this sound like a good plan? <Yep> My second problem is more tricky.  Our cat, who occasionally goes outside, has kindly picked up some fleas, and introduced them to our apartment as well. My roommates want to spray, as the Bio-spot drops Mr. Fleabag was just treated with will only deal with the problem on him, and not on our carpets etc. Obviously, I'm highly concerned about the ramifications of introducing highly toxic pesticides into the aquarium environment. <Me too.> I'm considering setting up the new tank in a closet/alcove thing in our living room (currently filled with houseplants and a small gecko and Betta tank), which has sliding doors that could be closed and sealed off "homeland security style" <Hopefully better...> with plastic film and duct tape- thereby segregating the reef, my gecko, and Betta from the bug bomb.  However, cycling a tank takes time, and I'm not sure how long I can convince my roomies to wait for bacteria to grow while fleas are nipping at their ankles (uh... my roommates, not the bacteria, who to my knowledge, lack ankles, lol). <Heeee!> Given that I'm starting with an established tank and well seeded substrate, how much time would you recommend giving the substrate to cycle, <A week> and at what pace would you proceed with livestock transfer? <Next day...> I'm itchin' for an answer, ;-) *Carla M. <Wish you were my roomie... BobF out in HI>

Bug Spray Boo Boo (7-31-06) I did my first really stupid thing today in regards to my saltwater fish tank. <Welcome to the club, sooner or later we all make mistakes.> I rinsed my hands off up to my elbows as usual and stuck my hand in the tank to remove the uneaten seaweed. That is the point that I remembered that I had used Off Bug Spray on my entire arm. <Utto.> The light then turned off as it is on a timer. I used a flashlight to check and the fish are acting ok.  I then did a 10% water change and have been stressed out for the last couple of hours the fish still are acting ok.  If enough bug spray got in the tank to be toxic how quickly would the fish react?  <Hard to say.> Any suggestions on more steps I should take? <Another bigger water change, perhaps 30% and add activated carbon to your filter. If already using carbon, remove the old and add some new. I use Chemi-Pure.> Thanks. <Your very welcome and hopefully everything will be ok, Leslie>  

Fire Shrimp Problem... new water? Cyanobacteria? Cat flea med.?   9/5/06 Hi Crew, <Tom> My Fire Shrimp has been having problems when I change water. <Very common>   He first appears to excitedly dash around the tank (very uncharacteristic) and then he will fall over and twitch.  I've seen this three or four times over the last couple of months - but not every time I change water. In the past, he has recovered after a day.  The two Gobies in the tank have never shown any sign of distress. <Need... to read... re the necessity of pre-mixing, storing, matching new and existing water quality...> Just over a week ago, I saw this again, and noticed that it occurred before new water went into the tank.  When it occurred, I was working on scrubbing what I believe to be Cyanobacteria off the rocks in preparation for siphoning it out.  I immediately stopped what I was doing and put new charcoal and a PolyFilter in the power filter. <Mmm, maybe an interaction here...> At this point, I remembered something about possible toxicity of Cyanobacteria.  Your site mentions possible toxicity, but provides no details of how toxic or what creatures are affected. <A huge topic... all affected to degrees> Later, my son mentioned the extreme toxicity of flea treatments for household pets. <Mmm, some... not all... to aquatic life. Can be investigated via the Net> I did some research and learned that the product we use on our cats (Frontline) has an active ingredient that is extremely toxic to shrimp (1 ppb kills some species) and furthermore that this poison gets onto a person's hands by handling a treated cat anytime within a month of treatment. <Yes, this is so> I had not been all that careful about washing before working in the tank (and I really find dedicated gloves just too hard to use).  So I became pretty convinced that flea poison on my hands was the source of my Fire Shrimp's difficulties. <I see> I resolved to be more careful about cleaning my hands and arms in the future before working in the tank. <Good> A couple days ago, I did another water change just after a shower and with no intervening contact with cats.  Everything seemed to go OK, though I did not make much effort to clean off the Cyanobacteria.  My Fire Shrimp did not seem bothered (though he has not fully recovered from the previous severe episode, and I don't think it likely at this point that he will).  I also re-introduced three Peppermint Shrimp at this time, and they had no problems.  (These had been removed on suspicion that they were eating my Xenia, but I later discovered a hitchhiker crab doing this, and so I am assuming the Shrimp are innocent.) <Mmmm> Today, I washed my hands with soap and rinsed my arms before spending half an hour using a toothbrush to clean off Cyanobacteria.  I tried to get the Cyanobacteria into a separate small container to be disposed off, as I was not planning to siphon the tank. After a half hour or so, I again noticed my Fire Shrimp looked disturbed, though not in truly extreme distress.  I immediately stopped what I was doing and began to compose this email.  Also notable is that the Peppermint Shrimp showed no signs of distress. So here's the puzzle.  Is the flea medicine to blame, and I really must shower or use gloves before working on the tank? <Doubtful... or all shrimp would be similarly mal-affected> Or is the toxicity of the Cyanobacteria to blame (or also to blame)? <Maybe> And, should we assume that the Fire Shrimp in its current damaged state is simply more sensitive to toxins, or perhaps by nature more sensitive to toxins? <I still am mostly placing the credit/blame on the new water...> By the way, I am also working on fixing the causes of the Cyanobacteria, which got out of control while we were away on vacation for a couple weeks this summer.  I'm running PolyFilter, changing 10% of the water weekly, and I've reduced the light (from 192 watts of 50/50 to 96 watts of 50/50 over a 30 gallon) in the hopes that the other algae will better compete for nutrients. <A good plan> Other algae present include Coralline, Halimeda, and an unidentified algae that is turf-like, attractive maroon under lower light conditions and faded yellow-green under high light conditions (hope this one isn't toxic too). Thanks, Tom <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/shrimpsysfaqs.htm and here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/water4maruse.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Re: Fire Shrimp Problem  9/6/06 Thanks Bob. <Welcome Tom> Below is some follow-up.  Reading is optional, and a reply is not required (though always of interest and appreciated): I have been following your advice about pre-mixing and aging my new water. <I see> I mix it to specific gravity of 1.024-1.025.  I rarely check my tanks, but I just checked the one in question and found it to have specific gravity right in the middle of that range.  I use B-Ionic for alkalinity and calcium. <Good product/s> Also, I've had this Fire Shrimp for 11 months and noticed no problems until the last few months.  One thing that changed was that we got a new kitten in June, and for a variety of reasons, he gets handled a lot more than does our older cat. <Mmm...> Finally, on at least one occasion it was clear that the Fire Shrimp's distress began before new water was added. So, I find it hard to believe that the new water is the problem. <I concur> Instead, your comments lead me to think that the flea medicine and Cyanobacteria might both have played a role here. <Yes, either/both could> And I guess I have to assume that the weakened state of the Fire Shrimp accounts for his reaction last time, when the Peppermint Shrimp were not noticeably affected. My take-home message: take care to have clean hands and get rid of the Cyanobacteria (as carefully as possible). Thanks again. Tom <Well summarized. Thank you. BobF>

Killing Fleas Without Killing Fish (4/27/04) Greetings Crew! <Steve Allen today.> I am currently battling fleas in my home and need some advice on treatment. <Being no fan of furry mammal pets, I don't have much familiarity with the available products.> This week I applied a powder to the carpet, and took the following precautions with my tanks: covered all open areas and sump with damp towels, turned off skimmers and return pump from the sump, turned off air pump for QT, ran circulation pumps only in QT and 125 FOWLR main tank. The cats have also been treated with Advantage and have been flea free for a couple days. <Don't fleas die if you keep the cats out of the room in question for some period of time? Which room is it?> After getting the tanks ready I applied the powder to the carpet, worked it in with a brush and left in for 1.5 hours before vacuuming up per instructions. I waited another 30 minutes before turning everything but the skimmers back on and also ran a Nikken air filter in the room with the tanks. I waited 24 hours before turning the skimmers back on. <I'm not sure you need to turn them off. Most flea products are organic molecules and the skimmer should actually help remove any stray ones that get into the system. High-quality fresh carbon and PolyFilter help too.> It has been 48 hours since treatment and I have observed no ill effects from fish or inverts. <Good>   So far so good, right? <Here comes the bad news, right?> Well there are still tons of fleas on the rampage...only need to stand on carpet for about 30 seconds and there will be fleas chewing on your legs :( <Makes me glad I have no cats or dogs.> I need to treat again, and more aggressively. So my questions are: 1) Spray or powder? I first chose powder as I believed there would be less chance of it getting in the tanks, but after applying it I noticed a lot of fine dust and very strong smell. <Pesticides do smell strongly and if you can smell it, it's getting into your body too.> 2) How long can I safely leave the tanks covered with only circulating pumps running? <Not very long if there is little fresh air exchange going on at the surface of the water. I know from experience that it is easy to drop the oxygen level in a tank to dangerously low levels.> The 125 FOWLR contains a 6" Barred Spinefoot and a 2" Passer Angel. The 20g QT contains a 2" yellow tang and a 3" Flagfin Angel.   You guys have been a great help in the past, and I am grateful! I will be greatly anticipating your response while being the main course for a bunch of bloodsuckers. E.B. <Unfortunately, there are no guarantees here. You could easily harm the tank, but everything can easily turn out fine. Here are a few principles to consider. 1. You need a excellent ventilation of the room. 2. You should spray whatever you use very close to the surface in question to minimize aerosolization. Is it just carpet or are we talking furniture too? If you're treating the rest of the house, can you isolate the fish room from the general air circulation? 3. Heavy chemical filtration with charcoal and PolyFilter should help. Fresh carbon in the air filter would be good too. 4. Perhaps you should call in a professional exterminator with experience in houses that also have fish. Hope this helps.>

Insecticides Bob, I realize that fish and aerosol insecticides are asking for trouble. But, I live in the piney woods of East Texas where periodic "invasion" of the home by ants and other little creatures is part of life. I think the ants are interesting to watch work but my wife says they have got to go. How can I protect my aquarium if/when there is a need to spray Bengal inside.  <Hmm, do first try water-based Diazinon... and in either case cover the system/s with a damp towel and turn off all air pumps or air-entraining devices (like skimmers, powerheads) during the fifteen/thirty minutes or so during/following application. This should be fine> I plan on covering the aquarium with a sheet (plastic better?) and turn off the cooling fan. The aquarium ( FOWLR w/inverts) has both a glass cover as well as a large, complete hood. As always, I appreciate your input and wisdom. Thom Walters <You're certainly welcome my friend. Bob Fenner>

Pest control...aquarium poison Hi, everybody from WWM. <Cheers> I don't know why the last month an explosion of cockroaches occur in my home (hey caramba, but we are not, pest control office you may say!!) but my problem is... I will call the pest control but I don't know what to do with my 200 litres tank. They use smoke (I don't know what kind of poison come with it) and is really effective with the cockroaches, because the smoke penetrates everything (including my tank)... <insecticides are most always VERY toxic to aquarium life. This is a difficult dilemma> Maybe you can give me a hint how to proceed, I thought cover the tank and the sump with a huge plastic lid sealed with masking tape, shut off the skimmer, the overflow and dose oxygen with a O2 tank... but I not sure if it will work or maybe you have an easiest and practical way... <if the process of "smoking" the house is only for a few hours before you can get back in, then a procedure like mentioned above may help... but it is certainly a risk. If the fumigation is to last more than say 6 hours (indeed many are much longer)... then the tank will unfortunately have to be moved. If for any reason the tank stays, use a lot of activated carbon and some poly filters (Poly Bio Marine) and be prepared to do several large water changes (gentle but large) in the first week after the treatment.> Thank you Carlos <best regards, Anthony>

Flea Problem Here's the thing -- I have two cats. They have recently gotten infested with fleas and I need to get rid of them ASAP. <What? Not the cats I hope!> My problem-I have a 65 gallon reef tank that has no cover because the lighting (MH/Actinic combo) is hanging from the ceiling above the tank. I live in a small apartment and want to know how bad will it be if I "bomb" my apt for fleas? If not, do you have any advise as to what to do, short of getting rid of the cats, lol? Thanks! <Have recently done this here... I would make sure the MH's are not able to "come on" (pull the electric cords from the wall), and cover the tank with damp towels, turn off the powerheads, any other air-entraining devices (like Venturis) and sprits away... Bob Fenner>

Does termite problem = tank problem? <that depends... is your aquarium on a wooden stand?> Hey Bob, <Anthony Calfo in your service> Help! Termites have moved in. My place needs tenting for 2 days. Got a 125 gal. FOWLR tank. <this is bad... not going to be fun> 1. Can I just remove fish and leave everything else? 2. If not, can the tank stay put covered in plastic? <alas... pesticides are categorically hostile to most all aquatic life. It may be necessary to remove the aquarium entirely. Do check with exterminator about the toxicity of his product with aquatic life. I suspect it is bad.> 3. If tank has to go, do you know a service that specializes in (or even does) this and can house my fish, rock, and sand? I live in Laguna Beach. <look in the yellow pages under "aquarium service"... there are many such maintenance personnel that are experienced with this move. Do check credentials/references though if possible> Those termite bastards. KEITH BAIM  PS Loved your book TCMA, the perfect reference guide and info source (except for missing a section on what to do if termites invade). <heehee... agreed... I think <G> Anthony>

Termite Tenting -- 03/13/08 Hi Crew I have a question and was wondering if you guys and gals have had to go threw this? <Through?> My house is going to be tented for termites on April the 2nd. I have 6 tanks in my house and all are doing very well for months now. I was going to move 5 of the tanks to my outside garage during tenting. They are from 10 to 46 gallons. Can move and reset up without to much trouble but the 135 long is what Im worried about. I have 6 fish in it and the one I worry about the most is my Chrysurus angel. When I got him the stress from the move and new tank almost killed him. Battled fin rot for months but now is doing great for months. Can I move fish to holding tanks for 3 days and leave tank up with plastic over the top and taped shut? I was going to get a Hydor external magnet pump to keep flow going in the tank. The wet and dry and UV I would take out and keep water flowing through the W/D so it doesn't die. The termite guys said that should be fine but wont guarantee it. I hate to take it down and then get new tank sickness. If I do take down and reset up how long till it restabilizes? I did that with a 29 gallon once and lilled a couple of fish account the nitrite shot up. I have so much time and money in this thing I hate to have to start over. I ask my fish store if I could store the fish for a few weeks and they said no. So if I could ask what do you think would be the best way to do this? Thanks for all past and present help. <... Try following directions... go here: http://wetwebmedia.com/WWMAdminSubWebIndex/question_page.htm put in the terms "Termite tenting", read the cached views on WWM... Bob Fenner>

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