My power just came back on after 36 hours. I have been worried sick for my tank and don't wish this on anyone. The folks that still have no power have my thoughts and prayers.
Here is what I did for my tank and status of livestock after power came back on:
I had the battery operated airstone (million-air) which required 2 D batteries. These last only 3 hours so after I was done with the batteries, I found out the entire area was sold out of D batteries. Lesson: Have lots of D batteries in stock.
I was manually oxygenating the tank, and heating the water on the stove (thank goodness for Gas), but even so, when the Apex
came on line it recorded the temperature as 73. My glass thermometer and digital thermometer showed 75. When I was manually heating, I tried to keep the temperature around 77.
I had a UPS backup for my computers which I moved over tot he tank. I used it last night to run an airstone with a low powered pump. I knew it would have lasted all night without problems, probably should have put a heater on there too.
I had styrofoam on the sides of the tank and made the mistake to "cover" the tank with a blanket to insulate. You have to "wrap the tank". Lucky I fixed that before I had more problems than I did.
The best suggestion I got about manually oxygenating water was to take 1/4 to 1/2 gallon of tank water into an empty gallon container and shake it like it's going out of style. This actually fizzed up the water better than any pouring I was doing (which sometimes is hugely problematic as it can knock corals off and depending on the height splash your electricals and everything else.
I strongly recommend this method over anything else for oxygenating the tank manually. It worked wonder, I could hear the water fizzing, I could see it as a different viscosity or whatever the word is when I poured it back.
I would also suggest monitor the salinity because heating and pouring will mess that up.
I had to let the sump go. My sump is actually a display fuge, it is pretty and had vibrant macros, some corals and inverts. I was able to agitate the water and heat it like I was doing for the DT but I pretty much concentrated my efforts and worry on the DT.
I have 3 confirmed casualties so far (6 hours since power came back on) my cleaner shrimp, one sexy shrimp and a pocillopora colony that RTNd. I have yet to see all the inhabitants but the fish are accounted for.
At first, the cold seemed to have caused dementia in the Midas, Bangai, and Mandarin.
The Mandarin was breaking my heart, he came to the surface AFTER power was back on gasping and staying at the top. I made him a little perch with the magnet cleaner. But i was able to hold him in my hand, he was that out of it. Maybe the light suddenly coming in shocked him, i don't know. He stayed hyperventilating for a very long time before slowly sinking to the substrate. Then I watched his color begin to fade. He was still alive when I turned off the actinics. He is my favorite fish. I am happy to report he is still alive!
The clown fish, have been troopers the whole time, cuddling together in the zoanthids, never stressing.
Tank looked very cloudy when the lights came on. I thought it best not to do a water change till daylight to give the tank a chance to gradually get the temperature up and filtration to work on the buildup of organics. IT is still cloudy.
ALK is through the roof, Calcium is low. (I was travelling for a week with a doser on and it seems to have effed up the ALK). (any suggestions on how to lower ALK?)
No ammonia or nitrates, PH is 8.0.
All in all
1. Stock up on D batteries
2. Get the battery operated air stone
3. figure out how to heat the water if you have no gas