2nd try on CRS - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 10:25 PM Thread Starter
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2nd try on CRS

This is my 2nd try on CRS. My first try was 2 years ago, and all 10 CRS die within 3 weeks. Since then, I raise fire red shrimps which is easier to take care of. I gain some experience, and now want to try CRS again.

Water parameter is
Tank: 5G (20L)
Nitrate: 0-5 ppm
GH: 5
KH: 0
PH: 6 or lower (no so sure using API PH tester)
TDS: 200
Temp: 72 F
Substrate: ADA congo sand, Malaysia driftwood, ADA Manten rock
Plants: java moss, pellia moss, anubias, moss ball
Fert: 0.5ml Seachem Flourish and Potassium weekly to keep the plant healthy

I use tap water which is pretty soft here. It is 30 TDS with 0 GH & KH, and PH is 7.0. I add Salty Shrimp Mineral GH+ to raise the GH to 5, and the TDS reads 200 after that.

The big driftwood brings the PH down to 6 or lower. I can't get a accurate reading from API PH test kit. Not sure if CRS is okay in such low PH

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Bump:

Bump: I use my old filter and the tank is cycled in 2 weeks. I use 2 fire red shrimps to test the water, and they do fine.

After 3 weeks, I put 10 CRS in, mostly SS grade. A few days later, they looks fine, and non of them die. Hopefully they like the environment and start breeding.

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Last edited by mheat; 01-31-2017 at 10:41 PM. Reason: correct mistake
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-01-2017, 05:28 AM
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Nice work! All the parameters look good. Surprised the driftwood brings the pH down that much. Most breeders shoot for low 6's if not a touch below 6, so you should be great there to add more in the future when you want to strengthen the bloodlines.

Only thing I might touch is lowering TDS just a bit of possible

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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-01-2017, 01:41 PM
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Yeah, this is one of the lessons hard learned in my case, I lost 4 of my original 9. Crystal shrimp come with a steep learning curve.

It seems I didn't provide little shelters for molting shrimp, which also is to keep the bigger ones from attacking their freshly molted tankmates. Don't forget that shrimp will need more than just algae, biofilm and greens. I've been feeding mine some supplemental Tetra flake food as a high protein source.

Starting small, keeping it simple..(?)
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-01-2017, 04:26 PM
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I really suggest using an active substrate to mitigate ph/gh/kh swings that will kill the shrimp
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-04-2017, 12:05 AM Thread Starter
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I use API PH test kit and it shows yellow. Not sure what reading it is. I ordered a PH meter, and will have a more accurate PH next week.
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-07-2017, 04:22 AM Thread Starter
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The Etekcity ATC PH meter just came in. After calibrate it, the pH measurement for my CRS tank is 5.1. It is too low for shrimps. The driftwood does not release tannins because the water does not look like tea color. I boiled it 2 times with 40 min each.

Now I am going add the Seachem Alkaline Buffer to raise the PH and KH. Shrimps being in the tank for a week looks fine so far.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-07-2017, 04:41 AM
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The setup looks very nice. It does not surprise me that your pH is varying so much. With a KH of 0 you have no buffering capacity. That means any trace amount of acid will lower your pH. Maybe add to get a KH of 1 and wait. That should be enough to keep the pH low enough and still buffer.

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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-07-2017, 06:26 PM Thread Starter
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I know PH as low as 5 is not good for any shrimps. The driftwood seems not completely cured. Now I am thinking 2 options:
1) Remove the driftwood, and make 10% water change weekly. My aged water with Indian almond leave is about 6.8 PH. So in the next few weeks, the PH will increase gradually and reach 6.8 PH. Meanwhile, keep soaking the driftwood in a bucket, and let it release whatever until it is stable at some PH 6, then put it back to the tank.
2) The driftwood remains, and add Seachem Alkaline Buffer to KH 2 or 3. With Alkaline Buffer, the PH will increase from 5 to some 6 PH. I am not sure if the PH can maintain if the driftwood keep leaking acid. But with KH2-3, the water can remain buffered. Adding Alkaline Buffer will also increase the TDS level. Current TDS reading is 250.

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What kind of driftwood is this? I search on Google, most of the driftwood have little affect on PH unless it still leach tannins and make the water tea-like color. I don't see tea-like color in my tank, and yet the PH from drastically from 7 to 5. I don't mind if it drops to 6, but 5 is too low for CRS. I need to do something before they die.

dukydaf is right. I added 1/8 tea spoon of Alkaline Buffer into my 20L tank through the last 24 hrs. It increases the KH to 1.5. I just test the PH, and it is 6.88 now. I am not sure what is impact on the CRS with the PH change from 5.1 to 6.8 within a short period of time. Hopefully they survive. So it is no thing to do with the driftwood, and it will remain in the tank.

Nitrate was 40+ during PH crash, and now 0, tested by API NO3 test solution

Last edited by Darkblade48; 02-08-2017 at 07:26 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 09:22 PM Thread Starter
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The PH is stable at 6.8 now. CRS looks fine and active grazing on moss and the driftwood. However, since I do not dose fertilizer for the last 2 weeks, the anubias starts to look yellow. Moss are fine. Should I start dose some Potassium and Flourish again?

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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-13-2017, 09:00 PM
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Ferts are fine. If you are really concerned, slowly increase dosing. For Flourish, if you mean Comprehensive, that should be fine. If you mean Flourish Excel, I'd be super careful with it to start off. Start really low and very slowly work your way up if you really feel you need to dose it.
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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 05:15 PM
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From my own experience, always better add a sponge filter!
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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, I have the sponge filter at the AC30 intake.

I used very small amount of Seachem Flourish Comprehensive and Seachem Potassium before. I stopped using it after adding the CRS because I don't want to add more TDS into the water column. My TDS is now at 250 with GH=5, KH=1.5
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post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 03:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mheat View Post
Yes, I have the sponge filter at the AC30 intake.
That's not what he's talking about...


More along the lines of this...
Foam Aquarium Biological Filters: Azoo Oxygen Plus Bio-Filters


Or one of these
http://www.swisstropicals.com/Web%20...erview%201.JPG
http://www.swisstropicals.com/Web%20...top%20view.jpg


Shrimp don't requite a lot of filtration and often prefer low flow tanks, so sponge filters work great! Not only that, but it's also a feeding source for shrimp. Sponge filters are not required, but many breeders do use them. Sponge filters are run off of air pumps, which also helps to add oxygen to the water.
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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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I feel lucky that my CRS survive in PH crash from 7 to 5.2 (drop within 2 weeks) and from 5.2 to now 6.6 (in 1 day after using Seachem Alkaline Buffer to raise KH from 0 to 1.5). It just seemingly no effect on their behavior. They act the same with those changes: actively moving and grazing on the driftwood and moss.
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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
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A question on the Bio-Filters: These filters connect to air plump and supply air to the shrimp tank. Will this process increase the PH level when Oxygen level increase? Is higher PH not good for CRS?

When I do water change, I put RO water from a big 19L bottle to a smaller bucket while I just need 3L. I immediately measure the PH, and it reads 7.4. After let it sit for couple of hours, it is back to 6.8 again.
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