Modular UGF Tank will incorporate all the benefits of running an UGF shrimp tank, while minimizing the problems of active substrate and UGF with active substrate. A modular tank can be adapted to most common dwarf water shrimps ranging from Caridinas, Neocaridinas, Sulawesi and Tigers all requiring different water parameters with out a tank rebuild.
Issues with previous versions:
- active substrate is exhausted in about ~10-12 months when using UGF
- must tear down the tank to replace the substrate
- inability to vacuum or remove mulm from substrate
- water parameters are not reliable after 10-12 months which led to decreased baby survival from 90% TO 50% then to 20-10%
- hard to predict how much your soil will actually buffer the pH
1) Africana + Amazonia II = pH 6.4 to 6.8
2) Fluval Shrimp Stratum = pH 6.5 for only a few months
3) Lots of Africana + New Amazonia = pH 4.6-4.8
4) New Amazonia = pH 5.5
- once set up hard to change water parameters when changing out shrimps
Build as close to a pH and TDS neutral tank as possible and remove the active substrate from the tank. Use active substrate in a reactor so the active substrate can be changed and replaced. This will also allow me to control how much substrate and composition to use in the canister/reactor. I will now be able to "hot swap" pre-cycled cartridges at regular intervals. Sulawesi use some coral chips. Tigers use minimal amount of active substrate with a bit of coral chips. CRS full cartridge of active substrate. TB use Africana. I will also use a long-lasting inert substrate in tank that can be vacuumed from time to time to help remove mulm. Run reverse UGF on 1/2 of the tank to further help push the mulm up out of the substrate.
I requested some samples from www.substratesource.com to evaluate. After testing pH and TDS of the samples. I ended up ordering the following:
1080 cubic inches of NM0110
500 cubic inches of NT0101
I haven't decided if I'm going to use the natural sand as final top layer yet. I'm afraid over time it might fall down through the gravel layer.