API Test Kits for Successful CRS and Bee Shrimp rearing? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-07-2011, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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Question API Test Kits for Successful CRS and Bee Shrimp rearing?

http://www.kensfish.com/api-test-kits.html

Mandatory (will fail without):
API Deluxe PH Test Kit
API Ammonia Test Kit
API GH & KH Test Kit

Optional (can do without):
API Nitrate Test Kit
API Nitrite Test Kit
API Copper Test Kit
API Calcium Test Kit
API Phosphate Test Kit

Please correct me if I am wrong. Thanks!

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-07-2011, 09:43 PM
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Nitrite is good to know when a tank is done cycling, or if you are having die off's, its a good thing to test in addition to ammonia. Nitrate as well should be test time to time to know if a WC is in order. I've never bothered with copper/calcium/phosphate before.

The API master kit comes with ph/ammonia/nitrite/nitrate and then get the gh/kh and should be good really. Watching the ammonia/nitrite/nitrate is really the only way to know if a tank is fully cycled or not as you should be able to follow a graph like this.



to really know whats going on with the tank and params. Sometimes with established media and a good source of ammonia, a tank can cycle in a week or two. Other times it can months and without readying all 3 of those, you will really never know for sure whats going on with it as you can see from the graph, ammonia may be almost zero and you think its done but you're in the nitrite phase instead and no where near doing being cycled. Like I said, its good if you start to have a few die offs to test all 3 and see whats up.

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-07-2011, 09:46 PM
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I kinda hate the master kit.... its like a bottle neck for me. they have 2 ph reagents, 2 amonia reagents.... your not even going to use that much.

I like the Professional but its like 60 bucks lol.

well for me (cycled tank required) PH, GH, KH is all you need. Well you don't even need GH KH kit if you really really really trusted your RO unit/ source.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-07-2011, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
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Most of the time when I take my water to Petsmart to get it tested, nitrite/nitrate is either 0 or only 10ppm so I thought its almost negligible once the tank is established and water changes at least once a month.

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-07-2011, 10:11 PM
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I've been breeding shrimp of varying levels for a few years. I've never once tested my pH. Also, there should be no ammonia in a cycled tank.

I personally think test strips are a waste of money and space... Most people do not understand their shelf lives, how to properly use them, or calibrate them.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OverStocked View Post
I've been breeding shrimp of varying levels for a few years. I've never once tested my pH. Also, there should be no ammonia in a cycled tank.

I personally think test strips are a waste of money and space... Most people do not understand their shelf lives, how to properly use them, or calibrate them.
Interesting. Do you base it off just the TDS then?

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 01:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NeoShrimp View Post
Interesting. Do you base it off just the TDS then?
no. He basically look at mother nature. if shrimps keep breeding (or at least born > deaths) don't even bother to buy test kits.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 02:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NeoShrimp View Post
Most of the time when I take my water to Petsmart to get it tested, nitrite/nitrate is either 0 or only 10ppm so I thought its almost negligible once the tank is established and water changes at least once a month.
Does the PetSmart in your area use the strips or actual drop tests? All the LFS (big box and otherwise) all use strips in my area.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 02:02 AM
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Quote:
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Does the PetSmart in your area use the strips or actual drop tests? All the LFS (big box and otherwise) all use strips in my area.
My local Big Al's uses liquid API kit. To me, its a good thing to have to test for all the basics, especially once MTS gets you and you are always setting up tanks. lol.

20g platy, , 2 x 10g shrimp, 3 x 20g shrimp, 7.5g shrimp and 1 great dane/mastiff puppy.

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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 02:11 AM Thread Starter
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Does the PetSmart in your area use the strips or actual drop tests? All the LFS (big box and otherwise) all use strips in my area.
They only use strips but they are nice enough to do it properly. As in waiting for the right about of time, writing it down on a sheet and even showed me the results just to doublecheck.

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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 02:34 AM
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I do weekly 50% water changes. That is it.

If you cycle a tank it should never have ammonia/nitrite. Once you have one cycled tank, getting the rest cycled is basically as easy as using some substrate or filter media from an established tank. For breeders, I use "dual" sponge filters. I just take one of the sponge filters out of the established tank and then put a new one in its place. Put the old one in a new tank and bam, instant cycle.

Shrimp have such a low bioload that it takes next to nothing if you haven't overfed.


I guess I'm not sure what you expect having these test kits will accomplish? If your shrimp are breeding good. If they are not, the list is relatively easy to fix. And those test strips from the lfs prob give you more than a close enough look at what is going on. Knowing gh and kh roughly gives you an idea of where to go, but once you establish a routine there is little need to change it.

A 9 dollar tds meter from ebay is the only thing I run.

You'd be further ahead buying something like shrimp stratum or aquasoil rather than all those test kits.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 04:05 AM
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Originally Posted by GeToChKn View Post
My local Big Al's uses liquid API kit. To me, its a good thing to have to test for all the basics, especially once MTS gets you and you are always setting up tanks. lol.

HI
Wondering what you meant by "Once MTS gets you". Thanks
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 04:13 AM
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 04:14 AM
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Test kits are useful in 3 situations.

When first setting up a tank.

And when a problem occurs.

The third reason is purely OCD based. And that's verifying parameters.

If you indulge in verifying, I suggest you limit it to once a week.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 04:15 AM
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LOL, Ok.......... I thought it stood for Malaysian Trumpet Snails..... Silly me. Thanks
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