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Newbie looking for white ring of death confirmation

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Hello!

As stated, I'm a newbie to shrimp. We have a seasoned, planted paludarium tank that we finally felt was ready to add shrimp after supporting two snails and a few black neon tetras for a little over a month. We purchased the cherry shrimp a few days ago, and I know the tank parameters at the store were different than our paludarium tank. Water there was pH 8.2 with high KH, ours is pH 7.0 with KH of 3. I had worried over the differences but was told the shrimp were younger and that so long as I slow dripped, and fed with a high calcium food they should be fine. I followed instructions and all seemed well until this evening. That's when the image below occurred. I have tested the tank and my parameters have not changed, and the other shrimp seem fine (active swimming and such). Is this the dreaded white ring of death I've heard about, and is this likely from the stress of being added to our tank? Is there something else I should be looking into that may be more of a problem than I was told, or that I may be unaware of? Or is this just a normal molt, and I'm just a newbie that is worrying too much and I need to give this shrimp another couple of hours?

Thanks!
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I’m afraid it does look like a mismolt 😓 they’re very quick with it when it works right.

What is your gh? From what I understand of shrimp, they don’t care so much about kh... but gh (calcium and magnesium) is important.

However, a shrimp wouldn’t mismolt in your water because of low minerals immediately... sometimes they do a stress-molt after a move but if he had enough minerals where he came from he wouldn’t have mismolted I think...

Then again sometimes it just happens.

Young shrimp should adapt, and if your gh is low you can bring it up with mineral salts. Mine is around 6 dgh or just under and everyone molts fine, I give them blanched organic spinach for calcium.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I’m afraid it does look like a mismolt 😓 they’re very quick with it when it works right.

What is your gh? From what I understand of shrimp, they don’t care so much about kh... but gh (calcium and magnesium) is important.

However, a shrimp wouldn’t mismolt in your water because of low minerals immediately... sometimes they do a stress-molt after a move but if he had enough minerals where he came from he wouldn’t have mismolted I think...

Then again sometimes it just happens.

Young shrimp should adapt, and if your gh is low you can bring it up with mineral salts. Mine is around 6 dgh or just under and everyone molts fine, I give them blanched organic spinach for calcium.
Thank you for the reply! My GH is around 8-9, KH is 3. In looking over the forums here I think I might know one of the issues...I think I may have overfed. One of my 2 nerite snails has been looking rough and the other snail has been munching on his shell. I was told that if I used a little extra of the Shrimp King mineral for about a week, the snails would eat the leftovers, and to feed the shrimp/snails once a day. Reading the forums here I think that's likely too much food. There was leftover food in the tank this evening after I fed this morning, so I think this may be part of my newbie mistake.
 

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Leftover food is best avoided for sure, but I don’t think it would cause the mismolt either... And your gh is pretty much ideal.

The sad truth of the hobby is that animals often come to us stressed and in pretty poor condition, and the whole ordeal of traveling and changing water is a lot for them. So you will often lose a few just to that.

If everyone else is looking healthy, I wouldn’t fret too much... if you start having issues with your other guys come back and we’ll brainstorm. Also if you just search ‘cherry shrimp’ or ‘cherry shrimp mismolt’ on the forum you will find a treasure trove of all sorts of info and experience.
 

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We have a seasoned, planted paludarium tank
What do you mean by "seasoned"? How was the tank cycled? How long did it take? How much ammonia could the tank process in a day? What ammonia source did you use?

Have you tested the tank to be sure there's no ammonia or nitrite present?

What's your water temperature?

was told the shrimp were younger
Young shrimp would be tiny. What you received are fully adult. Based on the photo, that particular shrimp appears to be quite old and near the end of its life cycle, despite the molting issue.

Any idea about how they were fed before you received them? Looks to me as if it's a combination of issues. The lower kH in your tank (which is why pH is 1.2 degrees lower) is the biggest factor, as it's tough for shrimp to adjust to softer water with less carbonate when they're larger adults. This is usually an issue if shrimp are received just before they're ready to molt but can still be an issue several weeks out. The other, smaller factor I suspect is a super-high protein diet from your shrimp source. Contrary to what some people suggest, shrimp don't need supplemental protein fed to them in high numbers - they get plenty from surface film, microfauna and regular shrimp food. But when fed high protein diets and kept in warmer water, as they often are by breeders and exporters, they grow faster. Combine that with water parameters they haven't been able to adjust to and molding issues like this occur.

Without knowing any of the other water parameters, I'd put this one on the seller and not you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
What do you mean by "seasoned"? How was the tank cycled? How long did it take? How much ammonia could the tank process in a day? What ammonia source did you use?

Have you tested the tank to be sure there's no ammonia or nitrite present?

What's your water temperature?
The tank substrate is Seachem Flourite, with 2-3 in of sand over that, planted, filled with RO water and some washed and boiled oak leaf litter (3 leaves) were added. It sat that way with the canister filter running (no charcoal just filter foam and rinsed leca), and a little bit of fish food added every few days for the first week, then I was told that the process would go faster to actually add some fish and use the aquavitro Seed and the Seachem Replenish to add minerals back to the RO water bringing the GH to 8. I did that and followed the dosing instructions with the Seed/Replenish. We added a small school of the black neon tetras first, and after 2 weeks started to see noticeable algae and added 2 nerite snails and a single washed and boiled magnolia leaf. After 3 additional weeks of seeing no fluctuations in pH, Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrates, GH or KH, with the 6 fish and 2 snails, we decided to go ahead and get 6 cherry shrimp, and also included 2 small mineral balls. I tested again last night after seeing the dead cherry and there still were no changes in the tank parameters.

Water temperature readings with the temperature probe (tank-dedicated digital meat thermometer) have remained between 77-78 degrees the entire month+ timeframe the tank has been establishing. This cherry is the 1st death we've seen in the tank so far. As of this morning we haven't seen others, though we have a stacked lava rock back wall scape with many nooks and crannies the shrimp love to climb in and out of, so the only time I really see all of them is shortly after food has been put out. I have not put any out today as I'm re-evaluating the feeding I've been doing and will likely only feed the shrimp 2-3 times a week alternating with the Shrimp King Mineral or the Shrimp King Complete. Unless other more experienced keepers like yourself have better advice on their care/feeding.

I do also have some of the Nano Banquet Blocks that was recommended to use to feed the shrimp and the snails to give them more minerals. I have not yet used them as I would rather identify what may (or may not) be an issue with my current setup before adding a new variable...unless that is something that could be helpful to the shrimp and snails health.
 

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As long as the tank can process the waste created by your livestock (sounds like it can) and you don't detect ammonia or nitrate, there are no worries there. And since you have some kH in your water and a good gH, you're good there, as well.

As far as feeding goes, feeding every 2-3 days or so is great. Only feed what they can finish in an hour and remove leftovers. Try to alternate foods and incorporate things like zucchini, spinach, kale, stinging nettle. Spinach is great because you can wad it up into little balls and stick them in the freezer - no need to blanch. Just drop the frozen spinach into the tank. Though, admittedly, it's easier to deal with if you attach it to something for easy removal -- I like using fishing line tied to a flexible plant anchor. That's just in tanks where everything can't be eaten quickly. Some of my shrimp tanks can power through 4-5 spinach leaves in 20 minutes.

Still believe this is an issue with shrimp age, condition, health and parameters from the source and has little to nothing to do with your efforts, as you've handled things better than most shrimp newcomers. Unless you continue to see deaths/molting issues, I wouldn't worry much about it.
 
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