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Mahawka 03-05-2013 08:46 PM

RCS Breeding Help
Hey guys i need some advice on the RCS. Here is my story.

I purchased about some RCS late 2012 November. Since then there has been some crazy activities in the tank. Around December all my RCS died, but strangely there were baby shrimps swimming around the tank. I was very confused to the situation since if there was water problems the new born should of died too.

Now i have around 50 RCS at sexual maturity. I seem to not be able to breed them. They would saddle up but never get eggs. During the new year the RCS started saddling up. The male shrimps were swimming around like crazy and exhibiting mating behavior. But a week later the saddles were gone and no eggs. This cycle of saddle to no eggs has been the same for the past month. I was wondering if you have any theories on what I am doing wrong, or what i should be doing different.

I don't have a water test kit. I know this is important but as a student i am on a super low budget. But I do about 10% water change per week

I have a mix of gravel, aquarium safe garden soil, ada soil
temp at 80f

Lots i mean lots of crypts, java moss, Hc, ect

Light 9 hours per day - on a scheduled timer.

1x Small algae waffler per day

They show healthy behavior such as molting, excitement during feeding, and lots of exploring.

thanks .I greatly appreciate it. :angel:

ravensgate 03-05-2013 08:59 PM

Ok, actually makes perfect sense the babies survived. The adults may not have been able to handle the parameters you had them in, could have been very different from their original breeder and slowly over time, it has killed them. But the babies were BORN into your parameters and have adapted. That's why they survived. If it was a water quality issue they would not have (as in something toxic, ammonia, nitrite, etc, etc...not talking about pH, Gh, KH here). I have actually gone through this myself losing adult shrimp on a weekly basis but babies born into the tank alive and doing well.

As far as going from saddle to no saddle and no eggs, this could be a few things. #1, it's not uncommon for first time mothers to drop their eggs within hours or days of being berried. Also, you could have sterile male shrimp in there. And I had the problem with no shrimp berrying when I was stressing my shrimp out with too frequent water changes (which included vacuuming substrate...newbie mistake and I don't touch substrate now). So there could be a lot of reasons but those would be my first guesses. Give them time, they'll get the hang of it.

Also, one algae wafer a day isn't the best idea. Algae wafers can be high in protein which may (or may not) cause molting issues down the road. Secondly, a variety in the diet is important. Blanched spinach, kale, zucchini, fresh veggies are good for them and they'll love you for it. And lastly, feeding once a day especially if it's a whole algae wafer is overfeeding. When I feed processed foods I feed very small amounts, like a piece this big __ for 20 shrimps or so and every other day. Now, I have a CRS tank I only feed twice a week. On the flipside I have a tibee tank I feed 5 days a week but it's due to the aggressive nature of the particular shrimp I have in there. Keeps the aggression down.

82nd_Airborne 03-05-2013 09:05 PM

Also, what size is the tank. People have said that shrimp will only populate to meet their container size and food supply. I have experienced this with my yellows in a 3g. They allowed down breeding, i sold some and now they are breeding like rabbits again.

Mahawka 03-05-2013 09:09 PM

Awesome, Thanks for the detailed advice.

I think your are spot on with the reasons why the adults died. The shipment was transported from BC Canada to Alberta Canada. (The two locations have very different water)

I really hope my male are not sterile. That would cause a bit of complication. Maybe I will buy a few males and add them to the tank.

I have tried blanching lots of different veggie for them but they seem to not like it. The only exception are peas. They do love that. I will try and reduce my feeding.

Mahawka 03-05-2013 09:10 PM


Originally Posted by 82nd_Airborne (Post 2735346)
Also, what size is the tank. People have said that shrimp will only populate to meet their container size and food supply. I have experienced this with my yellows in a 3g. They allowed down breeding, i sold some and now they are breeding like rabbits again.

I have them in a 10 Gallon tank

jbrady33 03-05-2013 09:18 PM

Sounds like I am WAY overfeeding my shrimps, but I do have Ramshorns in there too. :)

sarahspins 03-05-2013 09:32 PM

My assumption would be that your nitrates are very high - that will cause shrimp deaths and usually only the youngest shrimps survive, but they won't breed or grow well under those conditions. A 10% water change is really not much at all - I do a 30-50% change once a week depending on my water tests or my nitrates start to creep up (I try to keep mine <10ppm, with <5ppm being better). You really do need a test kit of some kind, but failing that most fish stores (even Petsmart and Petco) will test your water for free if you take it in, so there's really no excuse NOT to know your water parameters.

Algae wafers aren't complete food for shrimp - shrimp need more mineral content than they provide. I only feed my shrimp every 2nd or 3rd day (2-3 times a week) a small amount of either Jake's Om Nom or Mosura shrimp food. Daily feeding isn't necessary in an established tank.. when they don't have "food" they will spend their time grazing on biofilm and algae. I know some people feed theirs even less often - I've even heard once a week.

ravensgate 03-05-2013 10:25 PM

Also, the reason they may not be easting the veggies is because they've been fed an algae wafer every day;) Try not feeding them for 2-3 days, then put some blanched veggies in. If they are used to only processed foods, it sometimes takes a little incentive (starving) to get them to eat. :)

You can get an API Master TEst kit which will tell you ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH and high pH for about $20-25 on [Ebay Link Removed] GH/KH tests are separate but I do think the master test kit is the bare minimum you should have with shrimp. I know what it's like being a on a budget so watch the For Sale section here, some folks will often sell little used tests kits for good prices.

Mahawka 03-05-2013 10:30 PM

Thanks for all the advice guys. I will give them all a try. I will go out this weekend to buy a API master test kit and post my results. Maybe this will give us a better understanding of what's going on in my tank. :proud:

Mahawka 07-03-2013 06:59 AM

Finally Problem Solved. Two weeks after taking out my driftwood i started seeing berried shrimps. I guess it must of been the wood causing the problem.


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