My first attempt at setting up a shrimp tank - The Planted Tank Forum
 13Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 07:44 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
My first attempt at setting up a shrimp tank

This is my first post. I have been reading a lot and am not new to fishkeeping, salt and fresh. But I am rusty. I just wanted to say hi and maybe get some opinions on my plans.

MY PLANS:

I set up a used 5 gal fluval spec tank 4 days ago. I want it to be med-heavily planted and I want to stock it with 10 blue velvet dream shrimp from Aquatic Arts in the hopes of seeing and raising baby shrimp. I'm hoping to add the starter 10 shrimp in 4-6 weeks.

The tank has just the stock lighting, stock filter (foam block with carbon and ceramic stones) and stock pump. I used "special kitty" cat litter as substrate with a small area of white gravel to have free of plants. I have used lava rocks as deco. I have added osmocote plus to the subtrate for plant fertilizer.

So far I only have 1 Lobelia cardinalis plant that I have divided and added to the tank. I will be adding more plants this weekend when I can make a trip back out to petsmart. This plant is tissue cultured. I only plan to add tissue cultured plants to my setup because I truly hate those ugly brown hitchhiker snails. So my plant choices are limited.

There are also 2 dead shrimp in the tank to start the cycling process.

I have ordered a mesh screen that will fit over the slits in the overflow to prevent baby shrimp from getting through.

I have also ordered a bottle of API co2 booster and a bottle of Seachem flourish potassium that I will start dosing as soon as it gets here.

MY test kits are only API dip strips so take this with a grain of salt...

Temp: 79 deg
Ammonia: 1.0ppm
GH: 180ppm
KH: 180ppm
PH: 6.5-7.0
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 0ppm

Does anyone see anything that I've done wrong? Or that I can do better?

Sorry for the length and thank you in advance for any tips.

I'm going to try to add a picture, but I'm not sure I know how...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	149263099436599204061_1492631025597.jpg
Views:	45
Size:	39.2 KB
ID:	748297  

lahornby is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 08:01 PM
Planted Member
 
FishRFriendz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Central US
Posts: 268
Looks like you have a revision 1 spec V. Frosted filter and the plastic light are dead giveaways. The stock light is only low light and worked fine for me (growing just bolbitis heteroclita & anubias nana)until I wanted to grow S.Repens as my carpet. Revision 2 is low/medium light. You may want to get a stingray if you want to carpet anything.

Did you plug the hole in the bottom of the filter or are you also using the mesh you ordered to cover that? Completely blocking it will make the top flow better.

Fluval Spec V | Aqueon 20g tall | Aqueon 10g | Penn Plax Radius 10g
FishRFriendz is offline  
post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 08:14 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Zoidburg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Nevada
Posts: 995
Has the tank ever been treated with copper?

I would recommend purchasing shrimp from a "local" breeder.... maybe one of these?
L.R.Bretz Aquatics
Home
https://www.finsnthings.com ???
BUYPETSHRIMP.COM
TheGardenofEder

Main thing, if you can, avoid imported shrimp. It's more hassle than it's worth and many imported Neos have low survival rates. You may even want to check the Sell/Trade section of this forum to see if anyone is selling what you are looking for.


It's usually easier to dose the tank with ammonia for the cycle as you can get targeted ammonia levels... from 1-3 ppm. That method works as well, though!


The GH and KH are "kind of" high. They are within acceptable parameters for Neos, but it might help to know what your source water parameters are, as well as what the rocks are. I don't recommend using rocks that can change the parameters of the tanks, as this could cause stress to the inhabitants when water changes are done.


Definitely get the liquid test kits asap as well as a TDS meter!
Zoidburg is offline  
 
post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 08:24 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
I bought this tank when it first came out, so it's definitely a first edition. I used it as a nano reef tank for over a year and always needed the water to cascade over the overflow section so I filled the bottom hole with plumbers putty when I first got it. After a power outage I lost this tank overnight.

I then tried to start a planted tank but kept my reef lighting. I bought most of my plants from eBay. Within a month the tank was just OVERRUN with every nuisance algae you can think of and 100s of those hitchhiker snails, so I tore it down and gave up.

I know the light is junk, but I was hoping it could grow some low light plants (I still want it to be thick with plants, the shorter the plant, the better) especially if I start dosing the (liquid) co2 and Seachem flourish, but I don't know. I keep reading that shrimp prefer a lower light.

I originally wanted a iwagumi look but thought the shrimp wouldn't appreciate the light upgrade that would require.

I also still have my led reef light but it is heavy in the blues with no reds. I read in the past that the reef lighting was probably the cause of my algae problems. So I'm weary of it. But I'm not adverse to upgrading the light to a new one if the shrimp don't mind. I want to do this right this time. What do you think?

I should mention that I have a lot of saltwater reef and freshwater fish experience, but know nothing of planted aquariums or shrimp except what I've been reading in the last 2 weeks.
lahornby is offline  
post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 08:26 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
And tank has never been treated with copper.
lahornby is offline  
post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 08:36 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
I agree about the test kits. I need them. I know dip strips are unreliable and on top of that, these are old from my last attempt at a planted aquarium. I am just being lazy about it since I don't get any shrimp until after the cycle anyway.

The rocks are from petsmart and are also from the last time i attempted the planted aquarium. I also boiled them this time for over an hour to make sure there was no way any of those hitchhiker snails had survived somehow over the years, lol.

But I guess I just assumed that since they where from a pet store, they were safe. But maybe not?

(Petco and Petsmart are my only local options without driving 100 miles)
lahornby is offline  
post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 09:04 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
Testing...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	20170419_122018_1492635820725.jpg
Views:	34
Size:	41.8 KB
ID:	748337  

lahornby is offline  
post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 09:23 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Zoidburg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Nevada
Posts: 995
Test your water that you are using for the tank (tap?), and compare it to the tank parameters. Mainly, GH, KH and TDS (if/when you get the TDS meter).


That will give you the best idea if anything within the tank is changing the water parameters!



Shrimp do indeed do best in low tech setups! Some people manage to have shrimp thriving in high tech setups, but it's usually best to start out with a low tech and work from there. Less problems to go wrong!
Zoidburg is offline  
post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 09:48 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidburg View Post
Test your water that you are using for the tank (tap?), and compare it to the tank parameters. Mainly, GH, KH and TDS (if/when you get the TDS meter).


That will give you the best idea if anything within the tank is changing the water parameters!



Shrimp do indeed do best in low tech setups! Some people manage to have shrimp thriving in high tech setups, but it's usually best to start out with a low tech and work from there. Less problems to go wrong!
Thank you. Our tap water tastes funny and is very hard so we use the 5 gallon jugs that you can refill at the grocery store for drinking. I used that for the aquarium also. I'm really not sure right now what purification process they use, but I figured it had to be cleaner than the tap water and leave less hard water deposits on the aquarium.

I will test it, but at this point I'm thinking I need to invest in the proper testing kits before I will see any real accurate results like you mentioned before.

I guess I think that since I've kept reef aquariums, that a planted shrimp tank should be easy and cheaper. I'm learning that's not so true.
lahornby is offline  
post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 09:48 PM
Planted Member
 
FishRFriendz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Central US
Posts: 268
Quote:
Originally Posted by lahornby View Post
I know the light is junk, but I was hoping it could grow some low light plants (I still want it to be thick with plants, the shorter the plant, the better) especially if I start dosing the (liquid) co2 and Seachem flourish, but I don't know. I keep reading that shrimp prefer a lower light.

I originally wanted a iwagumi look but thought the shrimp wouldn't appreciate the light upgrade that would require.

I also still have my led reef light but it is heavy in the blues with no reds. I read in the past that the reef lighting was probably the cause of my algae problems. So I'm weary of it. But I'm not adverse to upgrading the light to a new one if the shrimp don't mind. I want to do this right this time. What do you think?
I haven't had problems with very high lighting detering shrimp from coming out.

Personally I DIYed a light that is just a bit more powerful than the revision 2 for my spec V. I've seen posts where ppl went for the planted+ and ended up with algae. I also got algae when I started using my DIY light, but I've finally got that under control with some floating plants.

At stock lighting I'd stick to stuff off the low light thread stickied at the top of the forum. And hold back on the liquid carbon since that list doesn't seem to need it. Tho the stuff is a nice algaecide.

If I were you I'd try the reef light again, but add in a crap ton of floating plants to cut the light down under them. I find a lot of my shrimp in my spec hang out in the hornwort and on the roots of the frogbit/water lettuce.

Fluval Spec V | Aqueon 20g tall | Aqueon 10g | Penn Plax Radius 10g
FishRFriendz is offline  
post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidburg View Post
Test your water that you are using for the tank (tap?), and compare it to the tank parameters. Mainly, GH, KH and TDS (if/when you get the TDS meter).


That will give you the best idea if anything within the tank is changing the water parameters!



Shrimp do indeed do best in low tech setups! Some people manage to have shrimp thriving in high tech setups, but it's usually best to start out with a low tech and work from there. Less problems to go wrong!
Wow... I just tested the drinking water before it goes into the tank. I can't believe the difference! I just tested both the pre-tank and in-tank water twice.

RESULTS:

Pre-tank:
Temp: room temperature?
Ammonia: 0ppm
GH: 30ppm
KH: 40ppm
PH: 6.5
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 0ppm

In-tank:
Temp: 79 deg
Ammonia: 1ppm
GH: 180ppm
KH: 180ppm
PH: 6.5 - 7.0
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 0ppm

I understand the ammonia, but the GH and KH?

Does the water temperature affect the results?
lahornby is offline  
post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 10:32 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Zoidburg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Nevada
Posts: 995
RO/DI water is fine as long as it's remineralized. Although some fish can do just fine in RO/DI water (soft water fish), most shrimp do prefer "harder" water. (soft to medium hardness, typically) I'm thinking the lava rocks might be changing the chemistry of the water??? Although there is a possibility that the water chemistry could be changed by the substrate or even the fertilizers, as well.


The reef light may need to be on a timer where it's on for 4 hours, off for 2-4 hours, back on for another 4 hours... possibly even raised higher above the aquarium to reduce the chance of algae. I'd stick with low light or a 6500k light personally.
Zoidburg is offline  
post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 11:03 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidburg View Post
RO/DI water is fine as long as it's remineralized. Although some fish can do just fine in RO/DI water (soft water fish), most shrimp do prefer "harder" water. (soft to medium hardness, typically) I'm thinking the lava rocks might be changing the chemistry of the water??? Although there is a possibility that the water chemistry could be changed by the substrate or even the fertilizers, as well.


The reef light may need to be on a timer where it's on for 4 hours, off for 2-4 hours, back on for another 4 hours... possibly even raised higher above the aquarium to reduce the chance of algae. I'd stick with low light or a 6500k light personally.
Thank you.

I do think I'm going to stick with low lights.

I am going to set up a bucket of water and test. Then add substrate, wait a day and test. And repeat this with some lava rock and then some fertilizer to see what is causing the change. I'm sure I'll be back in a few days asking about my results

But I need the GH and the KH to be higher than the base water, right? I just need to find a way to bring those numbers up but less drastically?
Zoidburg likes this.
lahornby is offline  
post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 11:54 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Zoidburg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Nevada
Posts: 995
If you are going with basic Neos, and the test strips are anywhere close to being correct, then the parameters are *FINE* for non-imported Neo shrimp.


Still, if you are using RO/DI water, which should have 0 GH, 0 KH and low TDS (25 or under, preferably under 15) but the tank is reading 10 GH and KH, then something's going on!

Based on your pre-water results, that doesn't sound like RO/DI water unless they need to change out the membrane or something!


Or maybe you just need the new tests! LOL



The temperature of the water might effect the TDS results, to some degree (typically not huge), but it will not change the GH and KH.


To change ppm to dGH/dKH, you divide by 17.86.

30ppm = ~1.7 dH
40ppm = ~2.2 dH

180ppm = 10 dH


Cherry shrimp do best in the 6-8 range, which is 107ppm to ~145ppm. It is possible for them to be acclimated to lower GH, but typically they have molting problems at lower GH ranges, especially in young shrimp. The same can be said of GH that is too high. I've heard of some being kept in 18-20+ GH!


If you can figure out a target range you want your tank to be at (where it's at now, or somewhere else!) and keep it at that, then find a breeder who keep shrimp in similar conditions, then you will have the best luck in keeping the shrimp happy. If you have to acclimate them, there's a higher possibility of stress and possibly deaths. It's *generally* not a big deal though! (as long as you stick with USA bred shrimp!)





I was kind of dropped head first into shrimp keeping. I had a beta once. Only had it because the fish "died", was dumped into the toilet, sat there for who knows how many minutes and came back to life! And was then brought home to me! I ended up finding another home for that beta! Never been a fish person. My SO on the other hand *LOVES* fish! He's been keeping aquariums for several years now and was in the hobby when I met him. December of 2015, he decided to get into keeping shrimp! No knowledge of how to care for them or *anything*. Just, oh look! A shrimp! Lets get it! (and ended up with a pair)

Male was gone within two days, female berried up before he was gone. Saw one baby from her. Never grew to adult-hood. Introduced shrimp from a local breeder. *TONS* of berried females! (aka 10+ berried females at once) Had maybe 2 or 3 babies survive past a week. Adults slowly "disappeared".

In a quest to find out what was going wrong, I learned about GH, KH and TDS... and learned that we have soft water. Too soft for the shrimp to live in, let alone for the babies to grow into adults! There wasn't enough minerals in the water for them to molt properly... once those parameters were fixed, we finally started having shrimp surviving for longer periods of time and babies finally being able to grow to adults!

Still not a fish person! But I got more shrimp! LOL
Zoidburg is offline  
post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 01:00 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
lahornby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidburg View Post
If you are going with basic Neos, and the test strips are anywhere close to being correct, then the parameters are *FINE* for non-imported Neo shrimp.


Still, if you are using RO/DI water, which should have 0 GH, 0 KH and low TDS (25 or under, preferably under 15) but the tank is reading 10 GH and KH, then something's going on!

Based on your pre-water results, that doesn't sound like RO/DI water unless they need to change out the membrane or something!


Or maybe you just need the new tests! LOL



The temperature of the water might effect the TDS results, to some degree (typically not huge), but it will not change the GH and KH.


To change ppm to dGH/dKH, you divide by 17.86.

30ppm = ~1.7 dH
40ppm = ~2.2 dH

180ppm = 10 dH


Cherry shrimp do best in the 6-8 range, which is 107ppm to ~145ppm. It is possible for them to be acclimated to lower GH, but typically they have molting problems at lower GH ranges, especially in young shrimp. The same can be said of GH that is too high. I've heard of some being kept in 18-20+ GH!


If you can figure out a target range you want your tank to be at (where it's at now, or somewhere else!) and keep it at that, then find a breeder who keep shrimp in similar conditions, then you will have the best luck in keeping the shrimp happy. If you have to acclimate them, there's a higher possibility of stress and possibly deaths. It's *generally* not a big deal though! (as long as you stick with USA bred shrimp!)





I was kind of dropped head first into shrimp keeping. I had a beta once. Only had it because the fish "died", was dumped into the toilet, sat there for who knows how many minutes and came back to life! And was then brought home to me! I ended up finding another home for that beta! Never been a fish person. My SO on the other hand *LOVES* fish! He's been keeping aquariums for several years now and was in the hobby when I met him. December of 2015, he decided to get into keeping shrimp! No knowledge of how to care for them or *anything*. Just, oh look! A shrimp! Lets get it! (and ended up with a pair)

Male was gone within two days, female berried up before he was gone. Saw one baby from her. Never grew to adult-hood. Introduced shrimp from a local breeder. *TONS* of berried females! (aka 10+ berried females at once) Had maybe 2 or 3 babies survive past a week. Adults slowly "disappeared".

In a quest to find out what was going wrong, I learned about GH, KH and TDS... and learned that we have soft water. Too soft for the shrimp to live in, let alone for the babies to grow into adults! There wasn't enough minerals in the water for them to molt properly... once those parameters were fixed, we finally started having shrimp surviving for longer periods of time and babies finally being able to grow to adults!

Still not a fish person! But I got more shrimp! LOL
I don't think it is ro/di water. Maybe just distilled? I will have to look at the machine next time I go for a refill.

And thank you so much for all your help, this GH and KH thing is throwing me for a loop. I think I already grasp why i need a TDS meter now. Although I never heard of it before starting this post, so thank you again.

I had a love affair with guppies in my very first aquarium, MANY moons ago. I was just so fascinated by the babies. I knew nothing about what they needed when I got them and it turns out that was ok. I had 2 or 3 to start, never bought another... had them for years and years. They didn't need anything from me except java moss, a little food and an occasional water change.

I wish I could pull my hubby into this with me. But he just smiles and listens to me ramble about things like this. Then asks me what it's going to cost before shaking his head. I think the only aquarium thing I've had that he liked was the lionfish I used to keep 10 years ago. He would go over and get feeder fish to feed them whenever his friends came over to see. Lol (lionfish are the salt water equivalent to freshwater Oscars if your not familiar) ...gulp... feeder fish gone

I wish my local stores carried neos... So I could just try to keep 1 alive instead of killing off $70 worth of shrimp (not to mention 10 lives) all at once if I have something wrong.

I don't really know what constitutes an imported shrimp? But I'm guessing they would be more expensive than my 7$ shrimp?

I believe the ones I want are just normal Neocaridina Davidi. But a pretty blue strain of them. They have them at Auqatic Arts which is a USA store. They are actually a sponser of this forum.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Screenshot_20170419-194650_1492649857009.jpg
Views:	25
Size:	39.8 KB
ID:	748465  

lahornby is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome