Shrimp, PH and Fluval Stratum
I'm starting my first CRS tank (in fact, my first shrimp only tank) but am having problems with the water chemistry.
I have a 20 gallon tank and added about 1 1/2" Fluval plant and shrimp stratum to the bottom. I did not pre-rinse this, but I added water slowly and it's visually crystal clear.
I used RO water that I make at a mixing station I have for other tanks in my house. I aged the water a few days till about 6.8 Ph (it always seems to level off at this according to my test kits). I then re-mineralized it with Salty Shrimp Gh+ to about 150 TDS.
I added this water to the tank and a week later I'm at around 4.0 Ph. So I made up new water and did about a 98% water change. Checked Ph and it was around 6.2ish. However, the next morning, the Ph is down to about 5ish. I'm guessing it's working its way to the bottom again.
What the heck am I doing wrong? The only other things in the tank are a large piece of drift wood, 1 almond leaf and some java moss. Why is my Ph hitting the floor? Is it Stratum? Can driftwood drop PH close to 3 whole points?
I'm thinking of scrapping the stratum and going with inert substrate and trying Gh/Kh from salty shrimp, but I don't want to thrown out anything yet if Im doing something obviously wrong.
I've had zero problems making and re-mineralizing/buffering RO water for planted tanks and keeping the Ph reasonable. But this is escaping me.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.