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Ferts and Amano Shrimp

3301 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Kunsthure
I currently have a 15 gallon tank that I would like to start growing more plants in. The tank has been set up since summer 2008, and now has an isolated kribensis (killed his mate and an amano shrimp), a male tiger endler's livebearer (will most likely end up moving him to my 46 gallon tank), and 9 Amano shrimp. The substrate is red flourite, and the light is a Coralife T5NO Double Strip light that's bulbs have not been replaced since the start of the tank (I know, I know, I should replace them annualy, but my dad thinks otherwise). I hope to add some small schooling fish, most likely Boraras to the tank soon.

Now on to the help part. Right now, the tank is pretty low maintenance. The main plants are vals, which I've start thinning out this past weekend. There's also a half decent amount of HM that's shaded by the vals, and a few crypts and mosses. In addition, I have a nice red ozelot sword and some E. vesuvius in the tank. I've added some Limnophila aromatica and L. mini to the tank recently, as well as a bit of Blyxa japonica. I hope to grow more stem plants, namely Rotala goias, R. wallichi, R. macandra 'mini', Cabomba furcata, and glosso in the tank, as it does have very high light and a good substrate. However, I am a bit concerned about liquid fertilization and carbon supplementation. As for CO2, I will probably go with liquid supplements. I know I could set up a DIY system, but I'm afraid I'll run into a particularly busy week or two and the system will dump the mix into the tank, killing everything, or something along those lines (CO2 isn't my forte). Excel is bad for shrimp I've heard. Would the Brightwell Aquatics FlorinAxis fertilizer be safe with shrimp and any small fish? What effect would heavy fertilization, especially of iron, have on the aforementioned organisms?
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Excel is extremely toxic whether you're talking about shrimp or fish. It can be used, but I'd worry about excel 100x more than ferts.

FTR I have Amano shrimp, and I dose EI, and at one time I used excel. I've had the shrimp swim right into the excel cloud while I was spot dosing, and they showed no ill effects. That's different then having a high level in the tank though, to which they would be constantly exposed. I dose extra iron in my tank in addition to regular traces (including copper) and have had no problems. Amano are much hardier shrimp than most of the coveted ornamental species (CRS etc.) from what I understand. I believe it also, as they seem to be very tough and forgiving of water quality.
I've used Excel in my 37g that has amanos, a vampire and some blue pearls running around without a problem. I've also used it in my 13g that has yellow, dark green, malawa, three vampires and a few stray orange Sulawesi that I couldn't put anywhere else, without a problem.

I also use DIY CO2 in my 37g without a problem.

As far as DIY CO2 for the OP, it's much easier than you think. Old mixtures don't dump everything into the tank, they just peter out. Having a bubble counter in between the bottles and the tank will prevent anything from reaching the tank even if they did dump. But Excel in a tank that size is a better option. I always recommend Excel over CO2 in small tanks because there's less room for error, especially if it's someone's first time with CO2.

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