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ღ Miss ShrimpTastic! ஐ...
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Please help me prepare for this substrate. Its the Akadama Double Red Line 15L bag.

I've heard so many good things about this substrate so I would like to get it for my final attempt at raising high quality CRS shrimps. I am afraid I'll have to get a brand new batch all together since all my CRS in my 12G recently died due to poor kH / gH conditions :(

My RO water is 0kH 0gH but even using 50% of it for a WC, my tank parameters are 9+kH and 9+gH. This is so not going to work as I have found out the hard way...

So starting all over with a new tank and everything.

Anyways, what do I need to do for it to be shrimp safe? I've read that it needs to be cycled. What does the mean, that is leaches ammonia or is it just too dirty?

Could I just pour it straight into the new tank, add RO water and let it cycle for 2-3 weeks before adding shrimps? I am not sure what I need to do at ALL, hence so many questions :hihi:
 

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ShrimpRetirement
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Here's what I did for my BASIC sponge filter shrimp tank:

I used 100% Akadama in a 20L tank. 2" thick.
Used straight tap water let it cycle with the sponge filters for about 2 weeks. Change out the water 90% and use RO water to replace. Toss in a few fish or snails to help with the live bacteria (these can be taken out prior to adding shrimp). Now let is cycle for another 2 weeks. Do a 50% WC after the 4th week, Mosura Mineral Plus (what I use), and bring TDS up to 150-160. Test PH, GH, KH, ammonia, and nitrates. Using RO, your readings should now read:

PH - 6.5-7
GH 5-6
KH 0-1
ammonia 0
nitrates 0-5 (toss in lots of moss or frogbit to keep it as close to zero as possible or you can use Purigen in a fine mesh bag to help absorption)

If all readings are good, you can toss in a few test subjects and leave them in for a couple days. If they live, your good to go!
 

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I rinsed it and did Liam's UGF filter.

The digital meters still reading 6.3ph and 90+TDS(as in the picture)

The ammonia is been always zero as in the picture.

I have CRS SS grade
 

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I noticed that folks in southern California have problems keeping high grade shrimp due to their water being very hard. TDS out of tap reads 300 plus. I would go with an undergravel filter connected to a small powerhead or canister filter. Gently rinse Akadama in a colander till the water runs clear. Put at at least 3 to 4 inches of akadama over the undergravel filter. Use 100 percent RO water or filtered tap water and remineralize with GH booster. I would add an additional sponge filter to increase biological filtration. Set the tank at 72 degrees and you are good to go. You should be able to raise high quality CRS in no time. I would wait a week or 2 before adding shrimp. I hope this helps.
 

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I noticed that folks in southern California have problems keeping high grade shrimp due to their water being very hard. TDS out of tap reads 300 plus. I would go with an undergravel filter connected to a small powerhead or canister filter. Gently rinse Akadama in a colander till the water runs clear. Put at at least 3 to 4 inches of akadama over the undergravel filter. Use 100 percent RO water or filtered tap water and remineralize with GH booster. I would add an additional sponge filter to increase biological filtration. Set the tank at 72 degrees and you are good to go. You should be able to raise high quality CRS in no time. I would wait a week or 2 before adding shrimp. I hope this helps.
Mine is setup exactly this way. I don't have crystals yet but I figure my setup should be ok for them.
 

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I have set up a few tanks with Akadama, all with UGF connected to either a canister or a power head. If you use 100% RO then you may get PH down to close to 6. I use 100% tap (my tap is PH 7.8, GH8, KH5) and Akadama gets it to PH 6.5 to 6.8, GH 3 - 4, KH 0 - 1, TDS 120.

I find its mineral stripping power better than PH lowering, and it's very hard to get GH high with Akadama. If you add GH booster, Akadama will take them out (you will get some GH up but not much).

Really like it, I think it's the best for hard water substrate. If you want to get PH lower then try Netlea (when new, it brings my tap to PH5.3 !!)
 

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here in texas we have hard water with high pH and TDS at about 400-500.

I've been doing 50/50 and using Amquel+plus, the only thing I trust and have trusted for over 18yrs.

I am going to start aging water in a drum and using Alder cones to lower pH and add whatever it is IAL/Cones add to the water.


I have CRS and this has worked out well for me with some breeding going on.
 

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ღ Miss ShrimpTastic! ஐ...
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you so much everyone for helping me.

I've just recently saw this post: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/s...es/148018-any-problems-akadama-substrate.html

It's about 6 months old so hopefully there are better news out there. I am only going to grow moss and plants that grows very easy so I don't mind the substrate not being that helpful towards plants. Just the ability to keep the pH around 6-6.8 and kH 0 and I am happy. GH I can always use the Fluval Shrimp Minerals : )

As for using my tap water to cycle for the first month, will that hurt the buffing capacity of the substrate since San Diego water is rather hard? TDS is around 350ppm, kH around 8 and gH around 8/9. I am just afraid after 1 month in such harsh conditions that the substrate will have some ill effects and won't be able to keep critical values low anymore :(
 

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ShrimpRetirement
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South Bay tap is just as hard, if not harder lol. I've cycled 2 akadama tanks with our hard tap and my tanks are now fully stocked with shrimp. Akadama is known for stripping minerals anyway so might as well give it what it wants from the get go... These are just my own experiences so take it with a grain of salt. Others may beg to differ but it's worked for me. Just passing on the info since you asked. As long as you change out most of the tap with remineralized RO prior to putting shrimp in, you'll be fine.

Akadama does not leach ammonia but it's always safe to test prior to putting shrimp in since I said to put in a few fish/snails to help with good bacteria colonization.

Plants/moss will greatly assist in a cycling a tank as well.
 

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South Bay tap is just as hard, if not harder lol. I've cycled 2 akadama tanks with our hard tap and my tanks are now fully stocked with shrimp. Akadama is known for stripping minerals anyway so might as well give it what it wants from the get go... These are just my own experiences so take it with a grain of salt. Others may beg to differ but it's worked for me. Just passing on the info since you asked. As long as you change out most of the tap with remineralized RO prior to putting shrimp in, you'll be fine.

Akadama does not leach ammonia but it's always safe to test prior to putting shrimp in since I said to put in a few fish/snails to help with good bacteria colonization.

Plants/moss will greatly assist in a cycling a tank as well.
Ooh thats a good point, so you sort of "charge" the akadama with minerals, etc, by letting it sit in your tap water for a while?
 

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ShrimpRetirement
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Ooh thats a good point, so you sort of "charge" the akadama with minerals, etc, by letting it sit in your tap water for a while?
That's the idea. :) Whether or not it makes any difference, I don't know 100% :biggrin:
 

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That's the idea. :) Whether or not it makes any difference, I don't know 100% :biggrin:
The high CEC should grab all sorts of things, theoretically even ammonium ions.

If your tap water started with 10 kh and 10 gh and then after a week of being in a tank with just akadama, you tested it and it was lower, then the akadama had to have absorbed it, that stuff doesn't go away!

Definitely a good idea, I'd be interested in doing some tests to see how much it can absorb..
 
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