Need help to improve shrimp baby survival rate - Page 2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #16 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 04:38 PM
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Those look like air bubbles to me so.... I'm kind of confused as to what a mesh filter is myself. I don't have any tanks that small, but I also think you're doing too much too. I hardly do anything for my 14g pinto tank and they breed like crazy w/ .6kh 6gh + sand and controsoil.

It sounds to me like you might do more total feeding and water changes than I do on this tank... and you can't see them but there's 20 someodd chili rasboras that were up at the surface above the pic thinking I'm going to feed them.


I would use a sponge filter instead of the one I have on there generally, but it came with that filter from aquatic experience and I had sponges that fit over the intake so I just left it...
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post #17 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 10:18 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by somewhatshocked View Post
What do you mean by "mesh filter"? Do you mean sponge filter? If what you're using is only the pile in the front left of your tank, you're going to need more than that. A sponge filter would be ideal for your tank. You're likely seeing nitrate spikes because you're fertilizing and possibly don't have decent filtration.

What are the little white squiggles on the left side of the tank? Air bubbles? Or basic white worms (nothing to fear)? If they're white worms, that suggests to me that you're overfeeding.

Those are bubbles + long exposure.
The only mechanical filter I have is that mesh bag I put over the filter intake in the back right. I used to use a sponge, but that would get clogged after about a week with that tan-colored gunk. With this, the stuff gets caught right at the surface, so the shrimp can pick at it if they want. The bits that get thru goes back into the tank. I don't try hard to remove it because I saw a successful CRS tank with no mechanical filtration, lots of bits swirling all over the water, and the shrimp were happy picking at everything.


As for the bio filter, that pile, plus the surface area of the tank, is all I have. I have never seen ammonia nor nitrites after cycling, so I assume this is good enough. I would be ok with adding more bio-media elsewhere if you can explain why it would be beneficial.
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post #18 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 01:08 PM
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Start there. You need better filtration. Yes, shrimp can survive in filterless tanks. They can survive - at least for a while - in bags of water as they're shipped around the world. But that's not ideal.

Don't take this personally but as a word of experienced advice and opinion: if you aren't willing to squeeze out a sponge in old tank water (during water change day, for instance - so you don't kill beneficial bacteria) once a week, you probably don't need to be keeping an aquarium. I squeeze sponges & intakes out multiple times per week on some of my tanks. It's just part of the hobby and only takes a few seconds. And if you need more information about shrimp keeping and the need for good filtration, use the search function here on the forum, check the Shrimp section, check the Equipment section and read through some tank journals.

I get the feeling that you are willing to use a sponge filter, though, so that's good. Get a sponge filter. They're super-cheap. And you maybe already have one? That's step one.

One of the biiiig bonus about sponge filters: They're magnets for shrimplets and are great for shrimplet feeding.

There are many variables and things we can't easily see or test for in keeping small tanks. So we do all we can to make homes for our critters as suitable and ideal as possible.

Step two: Mess with your tank less. Feed less. Just do the basics. Do small water changes once every week or two, as needed. Your situation will improve.

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Originally Posted by beanbag View Post
As for the bio filter, that pile, plus the surface area of the tank, is all I have. I have never seen ammonia nor nitrites after cycling, so I assume this is good enough. I would be ok with adding more bio-media elsewhere if you can explain why it would be beneficial.


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post #19 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-08-2019, 09:51 AM Thread Starter
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Update:
Today one of my cherry shrimp died - the first adult death in this tank ever. It kind of swap up to the top of the moss tree and landed on it's side. It did some tail flexing moves and had a slight gap behind its carapace, which is typical right before shrimp molt. Except being on it's side. It didn't seem to try very hard except for small twitching and probably died 1-2 hrs later. My first thought is that this might be a failed molt, but there are a few things that make me think it could be something else:
There is a gap in the shell, but it is not as big as the pictures I see on the internet, and it doesn't go all the way around.
Don't shrimp usually struggle for longer with a failed molt?
This guy has been in the tank for 4 months now and molted several times before.
The water parameters are the same as they've ever been, e.g. GH 6+/-1. These last few days I have been doing a 0.5L RO water change to try to bump down GH slowly, but it is still GH6 and the TDS is only about 10-15ppm lower than in my post #5.
Oh yeah, I did dose Seachem Iodide at 8ppb a few days ago, but that is not very much. Hmmm.
Feeding strategy has changed a little since I added Shrimp Baby to the mix.

Other than that, there are have been no big changes to the tank for a long time now. I wonder if it could also be old age, since this shrimp hasn't grown at all since I first bought it.

Oh, and BTW, I haven't seen any more dead babies since, and the other shrimp and neos seem fine.

Also, I forgot to add that I actually am running a sponge filter (sort of). There is still a little 1" cube of foam at the inlet, which is now covered by that white mesh bag for the sake of the babies. That foam would normally clog once per week with debris. So while this sponge is not providing any food, it should still be doing its biomedia thing.
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post #20 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-10-2019, 10:32 AM Thread Starter
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Update2: Things seem to be going downhill.
That same corner of the tank where I found the dead babies earlier, which I will now refer to as the "Corner of Death" claimed another two victims. Again, the shrimp seemed to have some brown-ish goo stuck to them. I was able over the last two days to "save" several babies that also had stuff stuck to them, and were on their sides nearly dead. I netted them up and just kept them in the net. After several hours, they would actually slowly eat the blobs off of themselves and "come back to life", although they are still generally inert and don't move around.
My guess is that goo is from bits of decayed Indian Almond Leaf, or maybe some other tank debris.
I already gravel vacced that area twice, but that didn't seem to help, so now I just covered it with a layer of sand.

Anyway, in addition to the Corner of Death, I still have the problem where the baby shrimp seem very weak and inert.
The GH is closer to 5 now, due to doing a SMALL water change every 1 or 2 days. TDS upper 120's.
I decreased feeding, and now I see less babies around. There is algae on the glass walls (not so much on the hardscape) so they could be eating that if they wanted to, but they don't.
Could there be something "bad" in the water, as all the other shrimp do seem a bit inert also. Maybe run Purigen or carbon?
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