Planting a shrimp tank - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 01:53 AM Thread Starter
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Question Planting a shrimp tank

I have been keeping fish for longer than I sometimes want to admit, but my experience has been almost solely in the area of South American cichlids. I recently became interested in some of the more interesting freshwater inverts, and have very much enjoyed keeping several varieties of both dwarf shrimps and filter shrimps. I have not yet tried breeding shrimps, but designing and putting together a planted shrimp tank is going to be my next aquatic project. Because of my mania for cichlids, neither plants or shrimps have ever been an option for me, so except for my recent experience with freshwater inverts I am knowledgeable about fish and not much else when it comes to aquariums. If someone would please respond with tips and/or advice on tank sizes, lighting, CO2, fertilizer, shrimp and plant selection/compatibility, and whether I should keep any fish in a tank of this sort, it would be a huge help. I found this site while looking for info on shrimp breeding, and it seems that most people who have had success with this have done so in planted tanks, so it seems that I should ask people who have had luck in this area for their help. So far the closest I have come to the planted shrimp tank is a six gallon Fluval Edge that was built specifically to house Bamboo Shrimp and has six small bamboo plants in it. I also have a 36 gallon community tank with Amano Shrimps that I plan to plant lightly within the next month or so to practice my aquatic gardening before I attempt a species specific planted shrimp tank; the thought is that if I go into the project with good advice and a bit of practical experience that I will hopefully have more success. Any thoughts on this would be gratefully received and much appreciated. Thanks!

I even have duckweed in my water bong!
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 02:01 AM
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A 5-10g tank will work for your project. I recommend sand and easy plants like java fern, java moss, anacharis, and crypts. My red cherries multiply very well in my planted 29G. They breed inn the java moss and survive w/ fish. If you're breeding then nerite snails would make safe tank mates and will help w/ algae issues.
My 29g has anacharis, java fern, java moss, wisteria, swords, jungle vals, and other plants. The shrimp have quite the coverage to be safe from hungry fish.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 03:35 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice psalm18.2. I have been looking at the Fluval EBI tank for this project, but was worried it might not be big enough because some breeders have recommended a 20+ gallon tank for breeding purposes. I have heard good things about the EBI on this site and on other sites as well, and may give that a go. Will I need to heat (or cool) the tank either for the shrimps or plants, or will I be able to keep and breed them in the 75 F that I maintain my tanks at in my house? Thanks again for the pointers.

I even have duckweed in my water bong!
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 06:33 AM
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There really are many choices when it comes to plants.

Perhaps this will help:

Plants for a Shrimp tank

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 02:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the link, Robert H. I like the fact that most of the plants mentioned in that post are easy to keep and do not require CO2. I am just getting into the planted tank game, and would prefer to start small and implement bigger changes like improved lighting, etc. after I get a but more experience, so it is great to know that there are uncomplicated options for beginners that will still work for my intended purpose.

I even have duckweed in my water bong!
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 02:17 PM
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I would leave the tank invert/shrimp only and no fish if you really want to enjoy watching them and have them breed as quickly/easily as possible. They're definitely just as interesting if not more so to watch then my fish anyways lol

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 03:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wetworks View Post
I have been looking at the Fluval EBI tank for this project, but was worried it might not be big enough because some breeders have recommended a 20+ gallon tank for breeding purposes.
I'm not sure how large of a scale you're going for your "breeding project", but for dwarf shrimps (CRS, RCS, OEBT, etc.), you can easily get hundreds living comfortably in a Fluval Ebi.


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-24-2011, 02:14 AM
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About three weeks ago my shrimp arrived (1 doz Red Cherries) and I have to say that they are more fun than most any fish I've had!

I do have 6 Neon Tetras in with them and so far I have yet to see them try and harass or eat the shrimp. I have one cypress driftwood cave plus a rock cave along with plants (corkscrew vals, cabomba,java fern,) plus two other vals that I forget what they are.

I'm considering in going to a shrimp only tank but I haven't made up my mind 100% yet.

The tank is a 15g.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-24-2011, 02:24 AM
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i've had a shrimp-only tank for the last 2 years. it's great!
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-24-2011, 04:31 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the tips so far. Regarding the tank size, I have not quite made up my mind. I have no experience in either the planted tank or the invert area, hence the request for pointers. Some sources have told me that you need a 20+ tank to breed Cherry Red and Red Crystal Shrimp, but another source stated that a 5 gallon tank would be more than enough; this was pretty confusing. Then I began to research more deeply trying to build a tank that would include both plants and inverts, and if appropriate add suitable small fishes, snails, etc. If I had a fully planted tank for shrimps, would I need more room and thus a bigger tank? In my search for good advice I found this forum, and after reading a lot of what is written here decided that you all probably know a bunch more about this than I do, so why not just directly ask for help, right? So far I know what the range of tank sizes should be and I have a good idea about what good beginners plants would be good also for a shrimp habitat. (In particular, ones which do not require special lighting, CO2, or a lot of experience.) Of all of the tanks I have so far considered, the EBI was the one I thought would be the best for my purposes, and since I am going with 'starter' plants, I will not need special equipment. I am going to keep nerite snails and tiger shrimps, both of which I think are really cool. I know I cannot keep tiger shrimps with other Caridina shrimps (which means I can justly rationalize buying another tank for those shrimps), and since even small fish may interfere with their breeding I will keep this an invert and plant only tank. A few other questions have turned up though. For instance, do I need to shorten or lengthen the light/dark in my tank? Is there any pH specific factor with the breeding like: they will only breed if the tank is at 6.8? Will they require or respond to a change in temperature within the tank? Will the presence of fertilizer or supplements for the plants affect breeding? I have heard of similar factors affecting fish breeding, so do things like these apply to shrimp breeding? Or is it really that easy as some make it sound, and the only way you can fail to not breed is if you kill your shrimps by mishap? I am trying to be thorough with the whole process of adding this tank to my home so that it is done right the first time and with no harm to either myself or my shrimps. Thanks so far for all the really good information.

I even have duckweed in my water bong!
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-24-2011, 04:46 AM
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The reason to go with a bigger tank for shrimp is the same as it is for fish. More stable water conditions and a greater margin of safety. I have a 20g with 2 15w T8 lights I had laying around. A simple Penguin Biowheel HOB witha prefilter (filter over the intake tube so shrimp don't get sucked in) and Flourite substrate. I've got a mountain of Java Moss, Java Fern, Pennywort, and a grass like plant that is also growing like crazy. I started out with 20 RCS and now have several hundred. I add nothing to the water and drop in an algae tab a day. The plants thrive, the shrimp thrive and it allows me to add shrimp continuously to my 4 other tanks. I don't heat any of my tanks as my house is kept at 75*.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-25-2011, 12:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks to The Dude for your response. I am thinking that I may just set up a 30 gallon tank as my breeding setup, and perhaps the EBI for a display tank. I have enough experience in the hobby to be able to keep my water parameters stable in the smaller tank but with the variable of plants being added I am honestly not real sure how this will effect my water chemistry. I know most people start with the smallest tank possible but then move up; I think I am going to do the reverse and practice with a tank setup that will be a bit more forgiving. I do want the EBI; I think it is a really neat design for a tank, and think I may add a Fluval Flora tank as well down the road. But I think that because of the possibility of unpredictable water parameter issues that I will use the EBI as my display tank and the larger tank as a breeding tank. This will allow me to work out any species or plant related kinks in my tank room rather than in the tank that everyone sees in the main living area of my house. I noticed that you live in FL; do you have issues with water here? I have found that most well and city water in SW FL tends to be a bit on the hard side, probably do to the large amount of limestone bedrock resulting in calcium carbonate in solution. Great for African Cichlids and not too bad for saltwater either, but keeping South American fish can be a bit harder. (I try not to add to many chems to my water, preferring instead to add driftwood and appropriate substrate to manipulate my water parameters, but this is not always possible.) Which brings me to my next question; is there a particular substrate that is best for promoting a planted shrimp tank environment?

I even have duckweed in my water bong!
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