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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Afternoon all,

I've been keeping cherry shrimp for around a year with no problems. I currently have them in a planted tank with three white wizard snails.
Recently I've been experiencing a high number of deaths. I've probably lost around 20 in the last month, a couple of times I've lost as many as three or four overnight, sometimes one, sometimes none.
I haven't seen any symptoms or unusual behavior prior to the deaths.
I've tested my water yesterday and everything looks fine (liquid test for ammonia, a strip for the rest):

Ammonia 0
NO3 Nitrate 0-20
NO2 Nitrite 0
PH 7.5-8

I did notice that my water is exceptionally hard:

KH 80-120
GH 180+ (the strip maxed out at 180, I'm sure it's actually higher than that)

Could this be causing the deaths? Should I be doing anything to try and bring these values down?

Any insight would be appreciated.
 

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you've had them for a year? that's about how long they live. You sure this isn't the old ones just living out the life cycle?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
you've had them for a year? that's about how long they live. You sure this isn't the old ones just living out the life cycle?
I did think that at first, but i feel like the numbers I'm losing are too high for it to be that.
Losing three or four in one night, more than once, makes me feel like it's something more than that.
 

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Maybe something has changed with your water? have you tried testing just your tap water? let it sit for a while and test it. Maybe a flag will be thrown there.

How often do you do water changes? I know with my shrimp tank, I have been tending to let the water changes ride with just top offs. But this will over time increase the TDS and hardness. If this has become a habit I would do a few 20% changes spread out over the next week.

also, just a thought. Maybe these are the older generations. As the generations continue they should get better at surviving in your water, so maybe these are the first gens that came from other waters and took a bit of hit when they were younger? maybe this death rate will fall soon and your stock will seem healthy again.

Just a side thought/hope for you you. That year mark is still a big thing to me....

are they all mature or are there younglings dying off as well?
 

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Maybe something has changed with your water? have you tried testing just your tap water? let it sit for a while and test it. Maybe a flag will be thrown there.

How often do you do water changes? I know with my shrimp tank, I have been tending to let the water changes ride with just top offs. But this will over time increase the TDS and hardness. If this has become a habit I would do a few 20% changes spread out over the next week.
I do about a 30% water change once a week. I know my water is hard out of the tap because I had an issue with my coffee machine a couple of months ago and the technician that came to repair it said it was caused by the hardness of my water.

are they all mature or are there younglings dying off as well?
it does seem to be mature ones that are dying, I'm still seeing shrimplets coming through and growing too so they're still reproducing, and the shrimplets are surviiving ok.
 

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it does seem to be mature ones that are dying, I'm still seeing shrimplets coming through and growing too so they're still reproducing, and the shrimplets are surviiving ok.
well, I heard that Shrimplets are hardier. Even in tank changes. I got a bunch of tiny babies, about a dozen at the LFS. they sold me 2x as many since they were babies, they have a buy 5 get one deal. But lost none at all. So I tend to see this as very plausible.

I guess all I mean is if the babies are dying then you have a real issue to look into. But if not, I am thinking it's just age. Maybe the beginnings of crowding? I don't know numbers on your population and tank or what is considered crowded in a shrimp tank.

But I still am inclined to think it's age related. I would give another week or two and see how much this trend continues and watch for dead or dying babies.
 

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1.) Get liquid test kits

2.) Temp?

3.) Diet?

4.) Any changes to the tank?

5.) Any changes to the home? Such as new sprays? Cleaning products? Or?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
1.) Get liquid test kits

2.) Temp?

3.) Diet?

4.) Any changes to the tank?

5.) Any changes to the home? Such as new sprays? Cleaning products? Or?
I know I need to get to get liquid test kits, I had one strip left over so used that, but I'll buy liquid ones now. When I bought them I didn't realise they were considered unreliable.

I keep the tank at 26 degrees, and I feed Hikari shrimp cuisine and shrimp King snail stix for the snails every evening. Around once a week I give them shrimp King snow pops too.
Nothing has changed in the tank since I set it up, and I don't use any cleaning chemicals in the room it's in.

well, I heard that Shrimplets are hardier. Even in tank changes. I got a bunch of tiny babies, about a dozen at the LFS. they sold me 2x as many since they were babies, they have a buy 5 get one deal. But lost none at all. So I tend to see this as very plausible.

I guess all I mean is if the babies are dying then you have a real issue to look into. But if not, I am thinking it's just age. Maybe the beginnings of crowding? I don't know numbers on your population and tank or what is considered crowded in a shrimp tank.

But I still am inclined to think it's age related. I would give another week or two and see how much this trend continues and watch for dead or dying babies.
It's a fluval flex 57, and I only have like 30-35 shrimp in it currently after the losses, and three snails.
I guess I'll keep an eye on it, and keep testing water, and see if the situation improves.
Thanks for the help, much appreciated.
 

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Temp is kind of high. Any chance you can lower it to 24 or less?

Chemicals used in other rooms of the house may still effect your tanks since air moves.

Might try feeding an algae/vegetable food twice a week (Shrimp King Snail Stix or???) and the Hikari Shrimp Cuisine once a week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Temp is kind of high. Any chance you can lower it to 24 or less?

Chemicals used in other rooms of the house may still effect your tanks since air moves.

Might try feeding an algae/vegetable food twice a week (Shrimp King Snail Stix or???) and the Hikari Shrimp Cuisine once a week.
I can definitely turn the heater down if it's too high.

Is the shrimp cuisine not a good staple diet for them? I can change it if not. What would you recommend?

Are there no concerns with the hardness of the water?
 

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You could also remove the heater? To rule out another issue.

Shrimp do best on an algae/vegetable based diet. Algae doesn't even show up on the Hikari Shrimp Cruisine until the 9th ingredient...

High protein (from meat based foods) and high heat is a potential recipe for shrimp deaths. High heat may cause them to grow faster, the more meat based diet may mean faster growth... they can't molt safely.

I've "been there, done that" with unexplained deaths. What helped to fix it, and get my colonies thriving? Feeding an algae or plant based food twice a week and a protein food once a week. I had people try and help me and no one could figure out the cause until one person suggested diet. Once your colony starts doing better, it doesn't mean you have to keep to this feeding regime, you could move on to feeding the algae/vegetable food twice a week and the protein food twice a week. I've suggested this to some others as well who have noticed improvements with their colonies as well. Some people have simply incorporated more vegetables into their shrimps diets, others simply found algae based foods and fed those more often.

I can't say what you are feeding is "bad", only that they may be getting too much meat based protein and not enough plant/algae based protein. Or maybe they are getting enough plant/algae, but they're still getting too much of the meat based protein foods.



As far as water hardness goes? You don't know how hard your water really is so can't comment on that. That said, there are many people who do keep them in rather hard water without issues.
 
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