Could anyone give me any suggestions on starting out a 10g planted RCS tank, with java fern?
I'm using a Cascade 150 Power Filter. I don't think there's a lot of current, but it's certainly powerful. And I don't use a heater.You can easily keep 100 adult red cherry shrimp happy in a 10g tank, assuming good filtration and tank maintenance. That would leave room for the approximately 10 billion juveniles that would also be in residence. Depending on your patience level and the amount you want to spend, you could easily do this by buying 10 or so fire reds from the Swap and Shop here and giving them 8 months or so. The neocaridina multiply incredibly fast. People often keep far more shrimp than this in their tanks, but if you figure roughly 10 dwarf shrimp to a gallon, your probably in the right ballpark.
Red cherries like to have things like hiding places and dense foliage to crawl through, things like grasses or mosses. They're really very forgiving of conditions though, you could keep them in a bare bottom tank and they'd still grow and multiply. As far as what kind of other plants you could use for ground cover, there are a number of options that would depend on what you're after and the type of lighting you have. What sort of LED lighting is it? If it's low light, a lot of people use marsilea, for more light you can get things like dwarf hairgrass to grow, and if it's high light there are really a ton of plants that will act as a carpet, including some beautiful but fussy species.
As far as switching from fish to shrimp, the only thing you would need to do is remove the fish and add a prefilter/prescreen to your filter to protect the shrimplets. If you're using a hang on back filter you might be able to fit it with the prefilter for the Fluval Edge (about $3 from PetSmart.) You also might be able to turn down your heater, as most of the shrimp like it a bit cooler than tropical fish, mid-70's are perfectly fine.
What kind of filter is it? Is there a crazy strong current in the tank? There is almost always an area where the shrimp can hide out and be happy unless your tank is a whirling vortex of doom. If it is really a very strong current in the tank you might see more activity in the shrimp if you downsize, but I'd be surprised if it was a problem. The only filters I can find by google that are sized for a 35g tank look like they'd be perfectly fine to me.
Most shrimp show more color against a dark background than a light background, but as long as your substrate isn't just crazy bright white you should be fine, and with things like driftwood and a reasonable amount of plants in the tank, it's really not an issue even if the substrate is very light.
Aside from the prefilter (my apologies for forgetting it) and the tendency of people new to shrimp to overfeed them, there really isn't much to worry about with RCS. If you wanted to keep a pickier species then you'd have more water condition and temperature issues to worry about.
The things that make it dirty is the stuff the shrimp love to pick through. lol. I seem mine all the time on my driftwood covered in moss picking out all kinds of fish food and micro-organisms that love to live in there.yeeahh.. i had a really bad experience with Java moss. and I heard it gets quite dirty
Java moss attacked and murdered my family while we were staying at a cabin in the woods. It was the worst night of my life. I lost a hand and was hideously disfigured, and am haunted by the memory of the sound of its nonvascular growth to this day.Just curious how did you have a bad expirence with java moss?