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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello!

I recently purchased a Mr. Aqua 12-long and want to set it up as a low-tech shrimp tank. I have a few questions I'm hoping you all can help me with. I am keeping RCS in my 56G planted tank now, and they seem to be doing fine, but I don't really do anything special for them. I'm pretty sure they are breeding, but it's hard to say because they hide alot and I can never get an accurate count....but there are always little ones creeping about. :D

Anyway, here are my initial questions:

Will I need a heater? Our house is usually in the 70-degree range, but can fluctuate up to 75 in the summer and down to 65 in the winter.

Do shrimp care about lighting? I would prefer to keep the lighting on the low side in an effort to limit algae growth.

Can shrimp tolerate Excel? I would prefer not to dose CO2 on this tank.

What substrate is best - both aesthetically and healthwise?

What about flow?

Any other advice is appreciated. TIA!!
 

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Shrimpsanity
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Will I need a heater? Our house is usually in the 70-degree range, but can fluctuate up to 75 in the summer and down to 65 in the winter.

Sounds like my house. The key is temp stability. A heater will be nice in the winter to regulate the lower end of the temp. If you set your heater at 72 then your temp should always be between 72 and 75.

Do shrimp care about lighting? I would prefer to keep the lighting on the low side in an effort to limit algae growth.

They don't care about light.

Can shrimp tolerate Excel? I would prefer not to dose CO2 on this tank.
CO2 is better than Excel for shrimps. Best is neither. Grow some moss and ferns.

What substrate is best - both aesthetically and healthwise?

If you plan on getting nicer shrimps there are lots of choices here: Aquasoil, Stratum, Akadama (bonsai soil) These soils will help with your water conditions. PH and KHl

What about flow?

High bio filtration is best with low flow.


Any other advice is appreciated. TIA!![/QUOTE]

Congrats on starting a shrimp tank. It is a fun and addictive path. If you are starting a dedicated shrimp tank, I'd recommend keeping your RCS out, keep them in the 56g. They'll take over your new tank and reduce your nicer shrimp breeding. Build the tank right and start with nicer shrimps. CRS, OEBT are the next step up and readily available.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Will I need a heater? Our house is usually in the 70-degree range, but can fluctuate up to 75 in the summer and down to 65 in the winter.

Sounds like my house. The key is temp stability. A heater will be nice in the winter to regulate the lower end of the temp. If you set your heater at 72 then your temp should always be between 72 and 75.

Do shrimp care about lighting? I would prefer to keep the lighting on the low side in an effort to limit algae growth.

They don't care about light.

Can shrimp tolerate Excel? I would prefer not to dose CO2 on this tank.
CO2 is better than Excel for shrimps. Best is neither. Grow some moss and ferns.

What substrate is best - both aesthetically and healthwise?

If you plan on getting nicer shrimps there are lots of choices here: Aquasoil, Stratum, Akadama (bonsai soil) These soils will help with your water conditions. PH and KHl

What about flow?

High bio filtration is best with low flow.


Any other advice is appreciated. TIA!!
Congrats on starting a shrimp tank. It is a fun and addictive path. If you are starting a dedicated shrimp tank, I'd recommend keeping your RCS out, keep them in the 56g. They'll take over your new tank and reduce your nicer shrimp breeding. Build the tank right and start with nicer shrimps. CRS, OEBT are the next step up and readily available.[/QUOTE]

This is very helpful - thanks so much! More questions:

How do substrates help with pH and KH? I've used Eco-complete on my planted tanks as it is readily available and I like the black color. Is this a good choice for a shrimp tank as well?

I was thinking about trying Fluval's nano internal filter as it is small enought to fit in my tank and won't be too obtrusive. What do you think? Here's a link:
www.fosterandsmithaquatics.com/Product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=22501

Thanks again! This is going to be fun.
 

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Soils like ADA, Netlea, Fluval Shrimp soil, have something in them that help lower the pH and kH of the water to help keep it low. For red cherry shrimp, eco-complete is fine. For crystals, they like a lower pH and the best way is one of those soils as you don't have to mess with chemical or anything. Only thing I try to do is small water changes or top-offs just so I don't add too much 7.6 pH tap water to the 6.4pH Netlea soil lowered water. But small amounts, it doesn't swing the pH.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Soils like ADA, Netlea, Fluval Shrimp soil, have something in them that help lower the pH and kH of the water to help keep it low. For red cherry shrimp, eco-complete is fine. For crystals, they like a lower pH and the best way is one of those soils as you don't have to mess with chemical or anything. Only thing I try to do is small water changes or top-offs just so I don't add too much 7.6 pH tap water to the 6.4pH Netlea soil lowered water. But small amounts, it doesn't swing the pH.
That's just what I needed to know. Thanks!
 

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aquasoil and fluval stratum have buffers built in to lower your ph/kh/gh but aquasoil at least will need a couple months with no fauna to cycle the ammonia out of it..

Really its just easier to use RO water to begin with and get whatever soil/sand/gravel you want. eco complete is fine...

As for a filter, i'd go with a small eheim(small canister filter) and a dual sponge filter. You want to make sure you always have some good spare biomedia in there for whenever you clean one of the filters altho i never clean my sponge filter and the shrimp appreciate it. You don't want a filter that you cant easily cover the intake for as baby shrimp WILL get sucked in(they start at around 1mm), plus you dont want a lot of equipment inside the tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
So....He-who-must-be-obeyed says 'shrimp are boring' and that he will only approve another setup if it contains fish. Which leads to my next question: what kind of fish can I put in a small tank that won't eat shrimp? :tongue:

I would like to try a pair of dwarf cichlids or maybe some CPDs. Thoughts? Also, I will not be covering this tank and want to steer clear of any known jumpers....such as killis.
 

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CPDs and shrimp

So....He-who-must-be-obeyed says 'shrimp are boring' and that he will only approve another setup if it contains fish. Which leads to my next question: what kind of fish can I put in a small tank that won't eat shrimp? :tongue:

I would like to try a pair of dwarf cichlids or maybe some CPDs. Thoughts? Also, I will not be covering this tank and want to steer clear of any known jumpers....such as killis.
I think CPDs and shrimp would be fine, based on my experience.
 

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Pretty much any fish besides ottos will each baby shrimp. If your tank is planted well enough (mosses are especially good for baby shrimp) some will survive though. CPDs would be a good choice. Dwarf cichlids would be a pretty bad choice.
 

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I have several pairs of cories in my 20L cherry tank. All are healthy, the shrimp population is growing quickly and I even found a couple spotted cory fry swimming around the other day. The cories and the shrimp ignore each other for the most part. If there is any predation of baby cherries by the cories, I'm sure I can afford it with the quantities of baby shrimp I have now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Pretty much any fish besides ottos will each baby shrimp. If your tank is planted well enough (mosses are especially good for baby shrimp) some will survive though. CPDs would be a good choice. Dwarf cichlids would be a pretty bad choice.
I'm glad you mentioned otos because I plan on stocking those as well and it's good to know they're safe. I actually set up this tank a couple of days ago and it is currently cycling. I've already added Christmas moss, subwassertang and fissidens fontanus so there will be plenty of hiding places. Do you think Dario Hysginon or Scarlet Badis would be good choices instead of dwarf cichlids? Both are very small species that can be kept with CPDs so I'm hoping that lessens the risk of baby shrimp becoming fish chow.

I have several pairs of cories in my 20L cherry tank. All are healthy, the shrimp population is growing quickly and I even found a couple spotted cory fry swimming around the other day. The cories and the shrimp ignore each other for the most part. If there is any predation of baby cherries by the cories, I'm sure I can afford it with the quantities of baby shrimp I have now.
Thanks for sharing your experience! I hadn't really thought of cories until they were suggested earlier in this thread. Are they OK with otos?
 
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