Plant growth slowed/stopped & dead shrimp. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-23-2014, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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Plant growth slowed/stopped & dead shrimp.

I didn't know which sub-forum would be best considering the range of problems I'm seeing. Oh boy.

After a strong start I've noticed that the original plants I put in the tank have significantly slowed or stopped growing. There was excellent growth for about 3 weeks, then everything stopped and now a little BBA & staghorn algae has started to creep in. This has been going on for about a week now.

Around that same time I started to see my cherry shrimp die off, a couple every day. They were brought in the same time as the plants. Could be coincidence. Fish are doing fine.

Tank: 40 breeder
Light: Finnex Planted +, 2 bulb T-5NO, both running 7 hr/day
Substrate: Eco-complete capped with pool filter sand, driftwood decor
Plants: wisteria, crypt, java fern, anubias, dwarf sag, staurogyne repens, ludwigia repens, flame moss
Dosing: Excel daily, Flourish weekly, potassium chloride dosed to 10 ppm weekly, Po4 whenever it tests <1
Routine: ~3 gallons tap water top off weekly, no water changes yet as I was shooting for a low maintenance setup

Tests:
PH = 8.2
KH = 16
GH = 20 (360 ppm)
Po4 = 1 ppm
No3 = 20-40 ppm (tough to tell with API kit)

I knew our water was hard, but I didn't know it was that bad. Wow. The tap tests at around 30 ppm No3, so I guess that's why I've never had to dose it.

My plan over the next few weeks is water changes with RO that I can get in town, and top off with RO during the week. I can understand the shrimp deaths now, given my horrible water conditions, but is there anything that explains the stunted plant growth?

Thanks for reading through this mess. I can take criticism, so give it to me straight.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-23-2014, 10:53 PM
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Stable water parameters are very important when keeping Red Cherry Shrimp. They have a wide range of acceptable parameters such as a pH range of 6.0-7.6 and an acceptable temperature range of 65-80F. It is far more important that the pH, temperature, and water hardness stay stable than to pinpoint a specific number. As long as they parameters are stable with in the acceptable range Cherry Red Shrimp will flourish in the aquarium.

15g Fluval Flex - Will be a planted shrimp tank
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-23-2014, 11:51 PM
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Hard to say what is wrong with the plants without seeing some close up photos. Do you think you can post a few pictures of the affected plants?

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-24-2014, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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Here you go.

I mean, the plants themselves still look decent. It's just that growth has stopped, shrimp died, and now the staghorn(?) has gotten a foothold. The water seems a bit cloudy too.
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