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Shrimp keep dying. Just bought some 2-days ago, found it dead? :(

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I got a batch of shrimp from several breeders about 1 month ago. The first day, or three they were fine, then the deaths kept happening. I was losing 1 per day, or 2 per every 2-3 days. I didn’t know my water was soft (almost RO water, practically.) Since then, I have added Seachem Equilibrium and crushed coral. I do have Salty Shrimp, but haven’t used it.

The deaths seem to have paused after adding Equilibrium, though I did lose, 1-2 of the originals.

Now 2-days ago, I bought some shrimp. These were locally bred just in a different part of the city. They were given to me in a ziplock, and did seem quite stressed because anytime I hovered over the bowl to drip them, they were jumping and trying to get out, one kept running upside down. I then added Prime to the bag, and dripped for 1 hr, or about ~1 hr & 20 minutes.

I don’t know why I found 1 dead today out of the new batch. My old batch, I’ve noticed one of my nicer orange neos wasn’t grazing anymore. She’ll sit on a leaf, and doesn’t move much. Sometimes every now and then she’ll relocate, but doesn’t graze or it looks like she’ll briefly scratch herself, but no movement other than that.

I believe every time that happens, I lose a shrimp, and they die off. She was active 3-5 days ago, and suddenly she no longer is.

I don’t know why I keep having losses, a lot of the orange girls have very large saddles, but even after a molt no berries shrimp either and I had them for a month now.

Tank Parameters:
Tank size: 10 Gallons
Ammonia: 0, tested twice.
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 0
pH: Dark brown?

Temp: 82 F. I don’t know if the digital thermometer is incorrect or if it’s room temp but my brand new heater is literally set on like 76 F.

(This tank has a betta on the other side. It’s been running for more than 5 months with a betta, it is not an old tank. Pre-betta; it was running for over a year, with a dead fish in it, unfortunately my pleco died when I was on vacation so this location was temporarily.)

GH: 6 Drops = Green.
KH = 1. My water is so soft, that even one drop does turn the colour, but visibility is hard unless I use a white piece of paper.

Water Change Schedule:~2-3 weeks I do a 10-20% water change, mainly when the water evaporates way too much. I did a water change 2-3 days before I bought the new reds, and I only took 6 litres out of a 10 Gallon.

I really don’t know why they keep dying, and no signs of breeding. Every time I see them sit around I just know they’re going to die.

I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. Years ago, when I kept Cherries, I had no issues they were breeding and my last cull cherries lived in bad conditions (high nitrates), yet still lived. So I don’t know what’s happening with this tank now?
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· Administrator
18,173 Posts
1: Stop making abrupt changes to tank parameters. Stop adding stuff unless you know precisely how it impacts water parameters. Stop adding new livestock until you understand what's going on with your tank. Just stop doing things. The less you do until everything is settled? The better the tank will turn out.

2: What brand of liquid gH & kH test kits are you using?

3: Read through this forum. Put in some effort and read for several hours about shrimp keeping. I promise you'll feel more confident and you'll have fun doing it.

4: Remove the heater. You don't need a heater with shrimp. Not even in Canada.

Have you tested for copper? If not, do that.

Have any medications been used in the tank?

Could you post a photo or photos of the tank?

What are the source (water) parameters of the shrimp you've added?

For Cherry Shrimp, you'd want to SLOWLY - over the course of a couple weeks - get that gH up to probably 8-10 and the kH up to 3-4. Those will be much more ideal parameters. You can accomplish this by adjusting the water you use for water changes. Then slowly add it to your tank. Do regular water changes - maybe a little bit each day. And after a couple weeks, your tank will have entirely new parameters.
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