5 Gallon Shrimp Tank: Help/Advice Needed - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-03-2012, 08:05 PM Thread Starter
bahamut285's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ontario
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5 Gallon Shrimp Tank: Help/Advice Needed

**Before reading my post, I just want to say that I am a total noob when it comes to plants and such so if you use any short hand or acronyms in your response, I probably won't understand unless you declare the shorthand first (sorry!!)**

I have an empty 5 gallon marina kit that I want to do something with: http://www.amazon.com/Marina-Style-G...dp/B0035HBFWM/
I was thinking of trying out a planted tank with some Cherry Shrimp. I have kept bettas in them before but am too heartbroken over a death to get another anytime soon. As for plants I kept Water Wisteria and Red Ludwigia before, but my brother accidentally killed them because he left them in pitch black darkness for 3 days (not sure if that's what killed them but they were brown/melted when I got back...). They were planted in regular gravel.

For my new project, I'd like to try having sand or substrate instead of gravel. I'm deciding between:

Sand: http://www.bigalsonline.ca/fish/subs...lack-5-lb.html
Shrimp Stratum: http://www.bigalsonline.ca/fish/subs...um-4-4-lb.html

Can anybody give me some advice for or against either one of these? Or a personal review/experience?

For my lighting, I've got this light already installed: http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...uctId=11248156

The only problem is that the design of the hood doesn't allow the light to reach the far left of the tank, which is fine, I just won't plant there.

I've also got a bottle of SeaChem Flourish and two Marimo balls that need to go in there.

My questions are:
1) What kind of low-tech beginner plants should I look for? My LFS/LPS doesn't have a great selection so the more plants mentioned the easier it would be for me to look. Common names and/or taxonomic names are fine. I saw the sticky/list at the top of this section, are there any that are better/worse for shrimp?

2) Are Red Cherry Shrimp going to be okay in a planted 5 gal? I only picked them because they're colourful and don't cost me $12 each like Crystal Red Shrimp. If not, please advise on which shrimp would be better!

3) Will I need my filter? considering the low bioload and (hopefully) wonderfully growing plants, will a filter still be necessary?

4) How do you feed shrimp safely? I know you're not supposed to leave stuff in there overnight because it will jack up the ammonia, yet I have no other fish in there to "feed" and let the shrimp eat leftovers. Do I just drop in a wafer for 20 or so minutes then take it out? I have some leftover wafers from my grandmother's pleco, it would seem like a waste though. (same idea with blanched veggies, I'd feel a little wasteful having to throw it out)

5) Is there anything I'm missing?

Other notes
- I'm not really strapped for cash, but I obviously don't want to spend a gazillion dollars if I can help it. Anybody who can give me a potential budget would be amazing!

Thank you in advance for replies! I am in no hurry to get this started
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-03-2012, 09:14 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: CA
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1) Moss comes to mind for low-tech beginner plants for shrimp. Shrimp love it and it grows well enough in low light, no c02 or fert conditions. Ferns might be another options. Keep an eye out for low light packages in the SNS. Also to give yourself an idea look at the shrimp plant starter packages on Aquabid. Pick and choose what you want.

2) Cherries would be fine in a 5 gallon. They are cheap enough that you aren't out a lot of money if they die. But make sure the tank is well established and cycled before you place them in. Do not have any predators in the tank with them. Jimko also has some rili for sale cheap that you can try out, they require the same amount of care as cherries.

3) Yes, with a small tank and slow growing plants you are going to need a filter. You have it so why not use it? Place a pre-filter on the intake to prevent shrimp from getting sucked in.

4) Shrimp will eat a variety of items. You can get them small pellet food specially made for shrimp or other foods sold on here and other websites for a decent price.

5) Heater? Might not need one now but in the winter. Watch out for the dosing of Floruish. I have the fluval shrimp stratum and I like it. Going to get more for my 5.5 gallon tank.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-03-2012, 09:16 PM
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Location: Corvallis, OR
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Shrimp seem to love moss. And ya, you still need to filter...but with shrimp I recommend a cheap sponge filter. Don't know if you've seen them, but they run on air and there is no way for the shrimplets to get damaged by a power filter. They are also excellent biofilters. Like 6 bucks on Amazon. Shrimp love to scamper around on the sponge and feed on all the stuff that ends up there.

Ya, RCS will be fine in 5 gallons. You can actually have quite a few of them, and they'll probably even breed if you keep the water where it needs to be.

When I feed shrimp I drop their food into a little glass bowl I keep in the corner of the tank. Makes it easy to pull out the leftovers. Repashi makes some absolutely stellar shrimp food...the shrimp lose their microscopic minds over the stuff.
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