Need suggestions on starting a shrimp tank! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-01-2019, 08:07 AM Thread Starter
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Need suggestions on starting a shrimp tank!

I have the following setup and hopefully I can get a tank of shrimp going! My pregnant wife fell in love with those little guys first time she saw them in an aquarium store so im going to make it happen for her.

60 gallon tank
Penn Plax Cascade 1200 GPH Canister Filter
Fluval Advance Electronic Aquarium Heater (300 Watt)
SunGrow Luffy Aquarium Grass Seeds (Glossostigma Salatigasis)
SUN Microsystems JVP Series Submersible Circulation Powerhead Pump, 800 GPH
Uniclife Aquarium Air Pump 4 Watt 4-LPM

now for substrates, after doing some research ive ended up getting a bag of each CaribSea Eco-Complete 20-Pound Planted Aquarium and Seachem Flourite Black Clay Gravel so I'd have about 2" of it at the bottom of my tank.

here are some of the noob questions i have:

what are some good plants and carpets to add to it?

what are some easy-keeping shrimps to start with?

what are some other small fish I can add to the tank with the shrimps?

which online store are you pros getting the shrimps from? my local store is selling them at a ridiculous price!

Do I need to sponge wrap the filter outtake to avoid shrimps being sucked into it accidentally?

thanks a lot in advance for any answers.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-01-2019, 12:14 PM
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I'm new to shrimp keeping also but I don't use a heater and shrimps love moss, I found some very high grade cherry shrimp on craigslist from a local breeder for cheap and they are breeding like crazy...good luck and keep us updated
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-01-2019, 12:18 PM
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That's quite a large tank for shrimp. But that just means it will be easier for you to maintain parameters without beginner mishaps.

Shrimp (plural) are way more sensitive than many fish you can keep in an aquarium, so it's essential that you understand their requirements in terms of water parameters.

Read. Read. Read. Read. Read. And read some more. Make sure you understand parameters. Parameters. Parameters. Read. Read some more. In that order. Fortunately, you're in the right place and the forum has mountains of information.

You'll also need to understand the nitrogen cycle and how to 'cycle' your tank to make it safe for inhabitants.

With that out of the way, ditch the heater. Most shrimp won't need warmer water. You'll also either need to ditch the pumps or make them shrimp-proof.

To answer your specific questions:

You won't be able to have carpeting plants without using advanced CO2 and fertilizer regimens. What kind of lighting do you have?

The best way to learn about easy to keep plants is to look through the low-tech and plants section of the forum. Check out journals of people who keep easy plants and do research about the plants you see in photos that you like. That's how most of us learn about plants we like - by checking out what others keep in their tanks.

The shrimp you'll most likely be keeping are Neocaridina davidi - things like Red Cherry Shrimp. They make the most sense in your case. The best place to order shrimp is from other hobbyists who raise them in their own tanks and have healthy stock. You can check the For Sale section here on the forum when you're ready and I promise you'll find several people selling them at any given moment for cheaper than you'll find at any online retailer. Since you're just beginning your search, you won't be ready for shrimp for at least a month.

You'll need sponges to cover your intakes, yes.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-01-2019, 02:44 PM
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Fluval Advance Electronic Aquarium Heater (300 Watt)
You can use a heater during the cycling process, but once the tank is cycled, you don't need a heater at all.


SunGrow Luffy Aquarium Grass Seeds (Glossostigma Salatigasis)
Seeds? Toss these. Scam. Not 100% truly aquatic and may cause a mess in tank in 3-9 months.


SUN Microsystems JVP Series Submersible Circulation Powerhead Pump, 800 GPH
Shrimp shredder.


what are some good plants and carpets to add to it?
Monte carlo is supposed to be an easy to keep carpeting plant... but it does require trimming. Might even want to look into some dwarf hair grass or? There's also flame moss, christmas moss, java fern, crypts, pelia moss, frogbit, anubias....


what are some easy-keeping shrimps to start with?
Figure out what your water parameters are first. Your choices are most likely going to be either Neocaridina or Tiger shrimp. Important information includes....

pH
Ammonia
Nitrites
Nitrates
GH
KH
TDS


what are some other small fish I can add to the tank with the shrimps?
Otos. If you get a colony of shrimp [and plants] growing quite well and you don't mind if fish eat your offspring, then you could look into pygmy cories, kuhli loaches or some small schooling fish that keep to the top.


which online store are you pros getting the shrimps from? my local store is selling them at a ridiculous price!
There are many out there... main thing is, if going with Neos, be sure to get home bred. LRB Aquatics or Garden of Eden both sell home bred.


Do I need to sponge wrap the filter outtake to avoid shrimps being sucked into it accidentally?
The intake. Otherwise, you'll end up with shrimp in your filter and if they don't die, you could end up with a colony in there...
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-01-2019, 07:32 PM
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@Zoidburg pretty much has you covered, I just added my little input below his.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidburg View Post
Fluval Advance Electronic Aquarium Heater (300 Watt)
You can use a heater during the cycling process, but once the tank is cycled, you don't need a heater at all.


Agree, but if you end up keeping some fish, they may appreciate a heater at a moderate 74-75F, which neocaridina should tolerate just fine.



SunGrow Luffy Aquarium Grass Seeds (Glossostigma Salatigasis)
Seeds? Toss these. Scam. Not 100% truly aquatic and may cause a mess in tank in 3-9 months.


Agree.

SUN Microsystems JVP Series Submersible Circulation Powerhead Pump, 800 GPH
Shrimp shredder.


Agree, and no need for the extra flow in a shrimp tank.


what are some good plants and carpets to add to it?
Monte carlo is supposed to be an easy to keep carpeting plant... but it does require trimming. Might even want to look into some dwarf hair grass or? There's also flame moss, christmas moss, java fern, crypts, pelia moss, frogbit, anubias....


Start with some moss for sure. I didn't like how it looked compared to other plants right away, but the fish and shrimp love it and it is very easy to grow. Carpeting plants are difficult. As a newbie to planted tanks I have tried s. repens, monte carlo, lilaeopsis, and a couple others. They all are either difficult to grow or require constant trimming. I have had the best luck with monte carlo for carpet though.


what are some easy-keeping shrimps to start with?
Figure out what your water parameters are first. Your choices are most likely going to be either Neocaridina or Tiger shrimp. Important information includes....


I would start with neocaridina (cherry shrimp). They are cheap, available, and hardy. Down the line you can add caridina once you are more confident and they won't interbreed.

what are some other small fish I can add to the tank with the shrimps?
Otos. If you get a colony of shrimp [and plants] growing quite well and you don't mind if fish eat your offspring, then you could look into pygmy cories, kuhli loaches or some small schooling fish that keep to the top.


I am working on this very thing for our 40g shrimp tank. We decided on celestial pearl danio, clown killis, and threadfin rainbows. Also have a little experience with chili rasboras and ember tetras. They are all fine with shrimp. Some babies will get eaten, but once you have a decent breeding colony, you won't be too worried. I would establish the shrimp first and let them breed to desired levels, then add shrimp. If you set your tank up with hiding places for the shrimp, it will also benefit the fish and you may get them to breed in the tank depending on the species.

which online store are you pros getting the shrimps from? my local store is selling them at a ridiculous price!
There are many out there... main thing is, if going with Neos, be sure to get home bred. LRB Aquatics or Garden of Eden both sell home bred.


I bought mine from the LFS. They are more expensive, so online options may be better. Check out aquabid.



Do I need to sponge wrap the filter outtake to avoid shrimps being sucked into it accidentally?
The intake. Otherwise, you'll end up with shrimp in your filter and if they don't die, you could end up with a colony in there...
Yes. Definitely get a sponge. It is not expensive and keeps things easier on you.

40g high-tech planted with CRS, CPD, and other nano-fish:
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2.5g low-tech with CRS, Amano, and Nerite
No longer in service: 10g high-tech planted with CRS, and CPD:
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 04:10 PM
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For beginners cherry shrimp is the easiest and hardiest.

Just to note, cherry shrimp has different color "grades". The redder they are, the higher the grade, but also more expensive. If you buy high grade cherry shrimp, make sure to not introduce lower grades or they will interbreed and ruin their color
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-03-2019, 01:53 PM
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Man, a 60 gallon is going to be amazing! You have gotten some excellent advice already, but to +1 what others have stated, let that shrimp colony get nice and established (as in months at the minimum) before adding any fish. Once you have a stable colony, and fairly heavy plant/hardscape cover, the shrimp will likely reproduce like mad, even if half the babies are snacked on by fish you eventually add!

I don't have much (any!) experience with larger fish, but my 29 gallon is home to 100+ red cherries, who live happily with a couple otos, a twig catfish, a few random tetras, and a dozen+ each of mystery snails and (male) guppies. Also, the heater keeps the tank at 82, and the shrimp are fine -- likely since they have lived in this water for generations. If you end up with fish that need a heater, you should be able to slowly warm up the tank with a heater and within a shrimp generation or two (at the worst), they will thrive in the warmth. I actually have heaters on almost all my tanks that have shrimp, and they do just fine.

As for plants, I find crytocorynes to be easy to grow, along with other beginner plants like anubius (I have the nana petit variety), along with frogbit (it is super cute to see the shrimp hanging from this upside down), and mosses (I have java...it gets big after a couple months, but shrimp love it -- don't be afraid to chop it down to size & toss excess though, if it gets out of control!). Be aware that most plants you purchase at your local fish stores will have been grown out of water (for quicker propagation), and will melt back a bit once planted in your new tank. Give it time and most will bounce right back! Also, I love monte carlo...even if it doesn't carpet it is a pretty plant.

For shrimp purchases, you may find that buying from someone in your town that breeds their own will be worth the investment. You'll likely have similar water parameters, so more of your shrimp will acclimate easily to your tank, meaning more will live through the process. Purchasing from further away means likely vastly different water parameters (oh yea, get a good water testing kit -- API master kit, plus GH and KH testing kits). Long distance purchasing also means shrimp stressed from transportation. It is not unusual for people to lose a fair amount of their shrimp due to these two things. That said, I have heard great things about theshrimpfarm.com! Good luck!

It's not a mystery...snails are the BEST!
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