RO and shrimp dying - The Planted Tank Forum
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  • 1 Post By DiscusStu
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-17-2020, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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RO and shrimp dying

hello, im from indonesia and i have some questions (sorry for my english)

1) I have RO unit but its old , i tested it and found out i have 20tds (tested with 2 tds pen), kh5 , gh5 . my father wont change the filter and membrane if its only for shrimp :/ , so do you think 20tds can have kh5 and kh5 ?
2) what level of kh or gh if the tds is 20 ?
3) my shrimp colony is getting smaller due to high level of nitrates 0.25mg/L , i tried to put some frogbit but they are dying (now im using inert substrate and low dose of seachem flourish. before i change to inert, im using active substrate and the frogbit multiply so fast). tried some stem plants but they didnt do well.
why this happen and how to reduce nitrate beside water change ?
4) In my country, there is no KH+ GH+, only GH+ . how if i have neocaridina that need KH ?

(v this template is taken from fb group)
Shrimp Type? neocaridina
Shrimp Amount? around 30 now
Shrimp Source? local breeder
Tank Size? 10 gallons
Substrate? inert
Filtration? bio foam filter
Water Source? RO water and Tapwater (2:1) 5KH 5GH and 5KH 20GH (not sure about the GH, dropped 14 but its only turn to a little bit reddish, but the tank have stains.)
Temperature? 27-28c
PH? 6-7.5 (forgot, the pen is broken)
GH? ? dont know
KH? 5KH
Ammonia?
Cycle Time? 2 months
Feeding Type of Food And Amount? half circle algae wafer , snowflakes
Tank Mates? no
Parasites? seedshrimp, scuds, some planaria
Bacteria?
Medication? -
Pesticides, Fly Spray? no
Your Shrimp Tank Maintenance? once a week 25% WC, Feed once in 2days (taken out after 2 hours, except snowflakes)

Thankyou !
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-17-2020, 03:35 PM
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The carbon blocks in RO filters aren't very effective at removing chlorine/chloramine.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-17-2020, 04:00 PM
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If your GH out of the RO machine is 5 GH, then the TDS is, at minimum, 90-100.

If two TDS readers are reading 20 TDS, then these need to be calibrated with a TDS solution.

If the TDS was actually 20, then the GH should be no higher than 1.


Active substrate has nutrients for plants. Inert substrate does not. This could explain why some plants are struggling to survive. The Flourish may not be enough nutrients for the plants.

Does the water you are putting into the tank have nitrates?

KH is less important and GH is more important. You could always see if you can order some online?


If the tank is as warm as it is, then they may be struggling to survive for other reasons.... high temps mean higher chance of bacterial infections and faster growth... faster growth could mean the shrimp are molting too fast. If you can't lower the temperature of the tank (if there's a heater, remove it!) then try increasing oxygen via an air stone/bubbler.

The algae wafers may be protein based and they may do better with more of an algae/vegetable based diet.

Are you sure there are planaria and not rhabdocoela flatworms? Rhabdo are pretty common within the aquarium trade and are often mistaken for planaria. They remain small, no triangle head.



You're English is fine!
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-17-2020, 06:07 PM
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Your RO water parameters definitely looks fishy. You should change the old filter cartridges and membrane regularly regardless if it is for shrimps or not. RO systems are not miracle instruments that you install once and will magically clean the water forever. The cartridges and membrane have filtration capacities. Once their filtration capacity has been exhausted, the water that comes out of your RO system will be the same as the water that goes in(if anything, probably worse because the cartridges are now bacteria beds from not being replaced/cleaned for so long).

Zoidburg already pointed out the most likely culprit on why your plants are not doing so well: nutrient deficiency. For most cases, it is probably carbon, potassium, or some micro nutrient. The lighting dictates the plants' nutrient uptake. Either dose more ferts to fix the imbalance or try lowering your light intensity to decrease the nutrient uptake.

If you need to take food out after 2 hours, then you are overfeeding. 30 shrimps are not a lot and can get most of their full from the biofilm in the tank. Try feeding in lesser amounts.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-17-2020, 08:28 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidburg View Post
If your GH out of the RO machine is 5 GH, then the TDS is, at minimum, 90-100.

If two TDS readers are reading 20 TDS, then these need to be calibrated with a TDS solution.

If the TDS was actually 20, then the GH should be no higher than 1.


Active substrate has nutrients for plants. Inert substrate does not. This could explain why some plants are struggling to survive. The Flourish may not be enough nutrients for the plants.

Does the water you are putting into the tank have nitrates?

KH is less important and GH is more important. You could always see if you can order some online?


If the tank is as warm as it is, then they may be struggling to survive for other reasons.... high temps mean higher chance of bacterial infections and faster growth... faster growth could mean the shrimp are molting too fast. If you can't lower the temperature of the tank (if there's a heater, remove it!) then try increasing oxygen via an air stone/bubbler.

The algae wafers may be protein based and they may do better with more of an algae/vegetable based diet.

Are you sure there are planaria and not rhabdocoela flatworms? Rhabdo are pretty common within the aquarium trade and are often mistaken for planaria. They remain small, no triangle head.



You're English is fine!
thankyou for your reply ! (Sorry, have no clue how to multiquote)
i believe my 2 tds pen more rather than my eyes to decide what colour is this.

if the 90-100 TDS have GH5 , hows the KH ? can we predict the KH based on TDS and GH ?

I see a lot of people keeping lot of plants with inert substrate, how they can keep the plants thrive if ferts such as seachem flourish is not enough ?

Ah true ! i never test the nitrates from my tapwater . Is RO water free from ammonia and nitrates ?

Just search rhabdocoela flatworms on google and you are right, i have rhabdo not planaria, some have red belly

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Epitaph View Post
Your RO water parameters definitely looks fishy. You should change the old filter cartridges and membrane regularly regardless if it is for shrimps or not. RO systems are not miracle instruments that you install once and will magically clean the water forever. The cartridges and membrane have filtration capacities. Once their filtration capacity has been exhausted, the water that comes out of your RO system will be the same as the water that goes in(if anything, probably worse because the cartridges are now bacteria beds from not being replaced/cleaned for so long).

Zoidburg already pointed out the most likely culprit on why your plants are not doing so well: nutrient deficiency. For most cases, it is probably carbon, potassium, or some micro nutrient. The lighting dictates the plants' nutrient uptake. Either dose more ferts to fix the imbalance or try lowering your light intensity to decrease the nutrient uptake.

If you need to take food out after 2 hours, then you are overfeeding. 30 shrimps are not a lot and can get most of their full from the biofilm in the tank. Try feeding in lesser amounts.
Thanks for the reply Epitaph !
To be honest i dont really know what my plant needs i thought Seachem Flourish contain all nutrients the plant need. I Posted the ingredients of seachem flourish below

My light is 22w for 10 gallons (8 hours a day)

So how long my shrimp should finish their food before its considered as overfeeding ?
Thankyou !
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 10:58 PM
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If your tap water contains ammonia and nitrates, household RO systems will not be "completely free" of ammonia and nitrates. Different RO membranes have different rejection rates but standard membranes have a rejection rate of at least 97%. If the TDS of your tap water is 100, after going through your RO system, the purified water should have a TDS of 3 or lower. This is of course, assuming your RO membrane has not been exhausted.

Seachem Flourish does not contain all the nutrients plants require to grow. It is missing an essential macronutrient, carbon. Even if Flourish has all the nutrients the plants need, it does not mean they cannot become nutrient deficient. Different plants have different growth rates and your lighting(intensity and photoperiod) will affect their growth rate. Say you have low lighting(around 15 - 30 micromoles at the substrate), 1 capful of Flourish per week may be enough. But if the lighting becomes more intense(50 micromoles+), the growth rate of your plants are increased and are demanding more nutrients. 1 capful of Flourish per week may no longer be enough to sustain the plants. The wattage of your light is vague and I don't approve of the wattage per gallon guideline. A 22W light from one brand may offer better PAR than another 22W light from a different brand. The distance between the light and the substrate can also affect the light intensity. The PAR of a 22W light will be very different when used in a 20 gallon long and a 20 gallon tall tank. But if I had to take a guess, I would say the problem is due to the lack of carbon. Try raising your lights several inches if you do not wish to supplement with more nutrients.

Processed foods generally break down quickly and not recommended to leave it inside the tank uneaten for ~30 mins+. You can see how fast a food breaks down by putting some in a container of water. The more tiny bits and pieces you see, the faster the food can foul up the water because those bits and pieces will fall underneath the substrate where your shrimps can no longer reach. Can be prolonged a bit more if it is a bare tank or have other critters like snails to eat the leftovers. Hard veggies or foods like barley and soybean hull pellets(snowflake) can be left longer.

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