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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’m really excited to set up my first shrimp tank!

The goal for this project is to be minimal cost - to appease the wife who took some convincing - and low maintenance.
I’ve never kept shrimp before but am looking forward to learning!

I have a 220L low tech tank full of Java fern, anubius, crypts, hygrophila polysperma, and lots of happy fish. But for this low tech I want to go for something different (not just because it’s nano sized).

Tank: Aquaone Focus 36L
Built in HOB internal filter
Stock blue/white LED bar - likely upgrading to a Chihiros A Series II or Fluval Aquasky 2.0

Granite base rocks
Black lava rock
Malaysian driftwood and mopani
(Knead It Aqua used to attach the rocks together)
Substrate is inert Imagitarium black fine gravel (what I had laying around basically as this set up has be be minimal cost!)

Fissidens Fontanus
Mini Christmas moss
Lilaeopsis brasiliensis
Bucephalandra dark lamandau

Cherry shrimp

Ferts: LCA dry macro/micro mix 1ml 2x per week

Plant Water Gas Pet supply Grass

I’m going for fissidens / mossy cave look with open land for shrimp frivolities. Should be fun!

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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Hardscape time!

First step was to arrange my lava rock arch/cave. I’m trying to emulate a 2hr Aquarist low tech scape that I love the look of, but with a few changes.

I used leftover tank dividers as my base, with filter sponge underneath for cushioning.
Wood Carnivore Flooring Gas Dog breed

Wood Floor Flooring Military camouflage Art

Rectangle Floor Table Flooring Gas

The Malaysian wood pieces were broken up from much larger pieces. I used fishing line to anchor some of them, the rest are removable if needed.
Plumbing fixture Gas Glass Display case Flooring

Water Plant Vertebrate Gas Flooring

Plant World Tree Trunk Wood

I rigged up an inlet cover from the useless carbon cartridge that most HOBs come with. I removed the carbon, cut it to size, and attached it to the inlet slits. Should stop shrimp getting sucked in. I wanted to use a piece of black foam but it reduced the flow quite a bit. I had no coarser foam in black, so we’ll see how this goes.

Here’s my (very) rough idea on planting.
Organism Art Pet supply Marine biology Aquatic plant

I’m aiming to eventually cover most of the hardscape with Fissidens and moss. It’ll likely be slow going though!

I also intend to acquire some anubius, more buce if I can (hard to find in aus), maybe crypts, maybe take some h. pinnatifida from my main tank, we’ll see.

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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Got the tank set up with gravel and the first order of plants. I’ll look to get more asap. Filled it up and started the cycling process. I’ve loaded the filter with media from my axolotl tank which should speed things up a bit.

The stock light is definitely less than ideal, looking forward to getting a better light next month.
Water Plant Pet supply Aquatic plant Fluid

Plant Nature Purple Botany Pet supply

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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Interestingly… after only 2 weeks of cycling, the tank appears to be processing 2ppm of ammonia in 24hrs. It’s possible the media from my axie tank has achieved that, but the weirdest part is I’ve never seen any nitrite. Nothing.

I’m skeptical so I’ll keep dosing ammonia, and testing, and keep waiting. The tank needs to grow some biofilm and mature anyway before I add shrimp. Curious though.

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I've been noticing that too in my currently cycling tank. Try testing nitrate. I've always read zero nitrite, but today I'm finally getting lower ammonia and now a decent amount of nitrate. Maybe the nitrite -> nitrate bacteria is just extra voracious.

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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Somewhat unexpectedly, my best friend surprised me with a bunch of red cherries from her tank. Found them when I got home from work.

There’s probably 5 or 6 in there. They’re completely adorable. I had wanted to wait a bit longer, but hey, my tank is processing ammonia well so far.
Here’s the main parameters this morning:
KH = 3
GH = 6
NH3 = 0
NO2 = 0
NO3 = 10

They’ve done well overnight and are seemingly happy exploring their new surroundings.

Plant Water Aquatic plant Pet supply Rectangle

Plant Wood Branch Bedrock Trunk

Plant Plant community Building Natural landscape Sunlight

Plant Branch Wood Terrestrial plant Organism

Water Plant Natural environment Natural landscape Body of water

Also added some TC glosso a few days ago.
I’ll test daily out of paranoia, but fingers crossed my new friends are comfortable.

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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Santa was very good to me this year. Scored a Chihiros A Series II.
Plant Grass Houseplant Aquatic plant Pet supply

Plant Terrestrial plant Grass Groundcover Shrub

Plant Wood World Rectangle Aquatic plant

Colour rendition is significantly better (as expected), the pics don’t do it justice but the colours really pop now.

The light is a bit smaller than the tank length, so I had to improvise extenders for the time being.
Hood Sewing machine Office equipment Typewriter Gas

I also had to reverse the acrylic stands to fit my lid.
I’ll come up with something more aesthetically pleasing in time.

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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Time really flies, it’s been 6 weeks since I first flooded the shrimp tank.

Things are going a little too well! I’ve been waiting for algae explosion, diatoms, something! Nothing has happened to indicate it’s a new system. Perhaps that is still to come, perhaps not. In the meantime, I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing!

The plant growth has surprised me considering it’s a low tech tank. The glosso is spreading, the moss is starting to crawl about, and the fissidens is doing amazing.
I did fail miserably in trying to glue 3 new moss portions, and one new fissidens portion, to the hardscape. I dropped a piece with glue into the lowered water and it kinda went everywhere. And dribbled down the hardscape… So there’s white glue here and there, but in time the plants will cover it all. Lesson learned re use glue with caution.

Anyway, here’s how it’s looking. A bit messy and haphazard - I’ll trim it to shape as it grows in more.

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Looks great and seems you have it on the kitchen counter. You have a forgiving wife for sure lol.
When it's time for baby shrimps that grate cover might have to large of spaces unless you have some media behind it. Maybe it's just the pics that make them look so large? Have Fun with those shrimps!

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119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Are you planning to add stems to fill in some of that space in the upper water column or leave it all open?
Thanks mate. And no, I don’t think I’ll go any stems in this one (except the few lobelia cardinalis I threw in there)
You have a forgiving wife for sure lol.
Haha I sure do! And thanks for the kind words.
Maybe it's just the pics that make them look so large?
I’ll add in a closer pic of the cover. I was hoping they would be ok but perhaps I need to reconsider the cover?
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