Adam's Low Tech 20 Gallon Tall *plant and shrimp help/advice needed!* - Page 2
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Old 12-19-2012, 03:29 PM   #16
somewhatshocked
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API is a good kit. Check the expiration date on the box before you buy.

You should be able to get a Freshwater Master Kit for $20-$25.

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These are test strips.

I'll go to the LFS to get a liquid kit. Is API good?
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Old 12-19-2012, 05:27 PM   #17
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The API kit tells the story. Ammonia is the problem as the result of an incomplete tank cycle.

The kit reported 0.5 ppm Ammonia.

Looks like I'm going to need to do daily water changes to protect the shrimp and WCMM.
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Old 12-19-2012, 05:39 PM   #18
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Post on your local forum and see if anyone nearby can spare some media from a cycled tank filter to put into your filter to speed up the cycle.
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:29 PM   #19
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Test results from my tank about 1 hr after today's water change.



Also, my tap water is testing ~1.0 ppm Ammonia after adding Tetra Aquasafe Plus to it and waiting 10 min.

Is my tap water driving my ammonia levels up, as tested? The image above shows ammonia around 1.0 ppm in the tank after a water change. Earlier today, before the water change, I posted 0.5 ppm of ammonia in the tank.

Also, is the nitrate level 0 ppm or is it between 0 ppm and 5 ppm?

Peace,
Adam
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Old 12-19-2012, 11:18 PM   #20
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The Tetra product you're using can cause a false reading immediately after using it. The water from your tank actually is what you want to test.

Nitrate is between 0-5. Tough to tell.

Since there are very few members from Kentucky - and Lexington specifically - you may want to call around to local fish shops to see if you can buy a cycled sponge filter. Then you could run it in your tank with an air pump until your other filter is populated with bacteria.
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Old 12-20-2012, 12:06 AM   #21
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I have plans to clean my filter out during the week between christmas and new year. Will be able to provide you with some old filter media if you want. PM me if you're interersted, but be warned that it won't be pretty.
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Old 12-21-2012, 08:06 PM   #22
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I have been changing the water in my tank daily and it seems to be relieving the New Tank Syndrome symptoms . Now to just get through the rest of this cycle so I can start changing the water at a more reasonable pace, like once a weeks or so...

In other news, my red cherry shrimp are growing like crazy! they are nearly twice the size of when I originally purchased them.



Do you guys like how the iPhone bring everything but the shrimp into focus?

*Bonus pic* FTS from today...



Any suggestions on adding plants or changing the layout? I'm thinking about moving the middle-decoration-aztecthingamabob more to the right and adding something like another anubias.
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Old 12-27-2012, 02:33 AM   #23
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Brief update...

I am still counting 5 shrimp and I still have 1 WCMM, though I think the nitrogen cycle was pretty hard on the latter.

On 12/24/2012 I added Cyptocoryne wendtii green and water wisteria.

12/26/2012 I moved some of the java moss that has been growing on the drift wood on the right side of my tank to the drift wood on the left.

Also, I had a huge spike of nitrites on the 23rd and 24th despite daily water changes, > 5 ppm. However, today the spike was much lower, <1 ppm. I am also detecting more nitrates, ~5 ppm.

Pics of the new plants to come soon...probably tomorrow.
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Old 12-27-2012, 03:12 PM   #24
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PICTURES!!!

On the right side of the tank, I added Cryptocoryne wendtii green and water wisteria.



On the left side of the tank I added java moss to the driftwood and planted MORE Crypts and wisteria.



Red cherry shrimp



White cloud mountain minnow looking very sad.



Peace,
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:17 PM   #25
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I added 6 neon tetra and 1 WCMM.

FTS



Bad artsy shot



Last but not least. I have started a 10 gallon tank. Just derimmed it and resealed it with black silicone.

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Old 12-29-2012, 08:11 PM   #26
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looking good adam. Have you considered foreground carpet or mid to background stems? Having 2 or 3 layers of plants make scape looks a lot more pleasant.
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Old 12-31-2012, 03:18 PM   #27
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Thanks Keith! What kind of stems/carpet do you recommend? I already have the water wisteria in there. I think I have six or so. If you had the chance to replant/rearrange everything that is already in my tank what layout would you do?

TBH I have just been experimenting. I buy plants and just throw them in. I really have no clue about laying out plants, especially in a tank with a 3d background.
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Old 01-02-2013, 05:20 PM   #28
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I have a couple of questions today. I noticed that the leaves of my plants were starting to curl, so I did some research and determined that this was probably due to nutrient deficiencies. Maybe it's a calcium deficiency, but I doubt it. The background in my tank is made from cement which contains loads of CaCO3. Also, I have fluorite substrate. So, I purchased a bottle of Seachem flourish comprehensive. Yesterday I added only half a dose ~1 ml. Tomorrow I plan to add another half-dose and then do a water change on Friday. I'm trying to avoid any sudden changes in water chemistry. Next week I will start adding full doses.

My question is how long should it take for the plant leaves to start uncurling? Also, my jungle val has been laying over rather than standing up and it had small holes/tears on some of its leaves. Will the flourish comp help with this as well? I trimmed off the parts with holes and the leaves that were laying over badly. Was this the right thing to do?

Another question. I had a dead shrimp in my tank this morning. What could have done this? Low nutrient levels that are also affecting the plants?

Additional info:
My tank run from 74 F to 77 F.
Ammonia 0 ppm
Nitrite 0 ppm
Nitrate ~20 ppm
I add half of an algae wafer (Hikari brand) at night and remove it in the morning. Usually not much of it is eaten. Sometimes there will be one shrimp on it.



Curling leaves on my wisteria



Crypts leaves are curling, but there is also a ton of new growth.



Another pic of the crypt growth and curling. BTW does anyone else's anubias push itself WAY out of the substrate?

Peace,
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:08 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam Kentucky View Post
Thanks Keith! What kind of stems/carpet do you recommend? I already have the water wisteria in there. I think I have six or so. If you had the chance to replant/rearrange everything that is already in my tank what layout would you do?

TBH I have just been experimenting. I buy plants and just throw them in. I really have no clue about laying out plants, especially in a tank with a 3d background.
Adam,
If I were you, I would also do what you're doing now, which is experiment first. What I would probably do it see if things would grow under your current light, ferts regime and etc. Once you get things to grow, then I would think about better aquascaping. Personally, I think your background would look good with java fern, anubias nana or bolbitis. These are low light plants but would do well in high light and co2 conditions too. As for stems, I would go a little minimal look. A. Reineckii would be a good choice for low light. Carpet that with maybe gloss/marsilea minuta or S. Repens. But that's just me.

I think your tank may still be going through the cycling process .... where you see spikes in amonia every now and then. That would be my guess. Have you tested your water lately?
Nutrients should not affect your shrimp.

About curling leaves, give it some more time before making changes. But adding ferts should be ok. It may be as simple as plants trying to adapt to new environment/light/water conditions.

Hopefully, Jake could chime in more about cycling and why the leaves are curling. Right Jake ?
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Old 01-03-2013, 04:08 AM   #30
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Thanks for the advice Keith! I will check into the plants you suggested. I will probably wait until I am ready to plant the 10 gal before I purchase anymore though.

In regards to the shrimp mystery, I think it might have been a failed molt and that is why I question the level of nutrients in my tank. See the pic below.



That's not just a white exoskeleton that's nearly whole shrimp that turned white. When I pulled it out of the tank the other side of it still had its red color. Also, I have been testing my water for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate every other day. I have not seen anything other than about 20 ppm nitrate.

Do healthy shrimp sometimes fail to molt?
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20 gallon, 3d background, low tech, plants, red cherry shrimp

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