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TDS and active substrate

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I have a bottom layer of year old flouride black gravel and a thin top layer of fluval, I think the flouride is making my tds rise by 15 to 20 everyday. Is it dangerous for blue velvet shrimp to do like 1/2 gallon RO water change every other day or maybe twice a week? I would do a drip acclimation and have it run 5 drops per min. Listed below is the tds readings and the water changes I did if that helps. I'm also not dosing with anything since the shrimp were put in. I was going to start adding liquid C02 and Api Leaf Zone. Also when I do the tap water change I add stress zyme to condition the water. Thanks!

Feb. 10 ( before Blue Velvets)
TDS: 703

Feb.13 (50% WC with tap water)
TDS: 563

Feb.17 (Morning 20% WC with Tap Water & 30% RO Water)
TDS: 332

Feb.17 (Nighttime before acclimating the shrimp)(20% WC with RO Water)
TDS: 276

Feb.18 (Blue Velvets in jar) (No Water change)
TDS: 264

Feb.19 (Blue Velvets in jar) (No Water change) (morning)
TDS: 276

Feb.19 (Blue Velvets in jar) (No Water change) (afternoon)
TDS: 297
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It helps to know the GH and KH, too.... The GH should be at least 6.

Neos can do fine in water with a TDS of 150-300+.

What is the TDS of your tap water? What is the GH and KH of it, too?


Is this stocked with fish, too? Fish waste and food would cause a rise in TDS.


Shrimp can be sensitive to CO2 in any form, so be careful dosing it. Probably a good idea to start at 1/4 dose and slowly raise it over time.



If it's a shrimp only tank, water changes once a week is plenty!
 

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Feb. 10 ( before Blue Velvets)
TDS: 703

Feb.13 (50% WC with tap water)
TDS: 563
From the above I estimate your tap water has a TDS of 400. This means that over time the TDS in the bowl increased by 300. Even accounting for evaporation this increase is too much. Something is leaching out. Do you have stones ? When you test your KH and GH those are likely to be increasing too.

Water changes are really a patch for the problem... like trying to cleanup the water on the floor without shutting off the hose. In addition, we do not know what is leaching out; is it toxic ? Even if not, sure with RO water you will be able to maintain the TDS but what if whatever it is has only CO3 and no Ca and Mg? Your GH will be way low. What if it has only Ca and no Mg etc...

Bottom line, maintaining this setup to some exact parameters is more work than it is worth in my opinion. Sadly I have to say that if you want it perfect for blue velvets you might have to redo the setup or remove the culprit for the increase. Begin with any rocks or wood
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
@Zoidburg So I tested my water parameter and the parameter of my RO Water, I'll list it below. Right now I only have 2 nerite snails(rehomeing soon) and 6 blue velvets. Before (as in last week) I had guppies in there from a previous tank I had. My tap water TDS is 136, so I know it not my tap water that causing the problem. I feed only a tiny piece of stick once a day, like half a cm long and whatever food is uneaten I take it out with a turkey baster. I guess I'll postpone the C02 till next week when I figure out the problem.
@dukydaf As mentioned before my water parameter is below, I tested this just 30 min ago, so the TDS is not rising fast, but it is creeping. I have a large driftwood that a year old in water, small piece of cholla, a sungrow mineral rock. Several plants, no co2 since putting shrimp in tank. It seems my gh and kh are fine, but I just thought of something when I read your post. I have an internal filter, filled with ammo carbs, crushed coral, and activated charcoal. Would this cause an increase in TDS? I don't need the parameter to be perfect, just within livable and breeding parameters. I do know cherries can live in high TDS, and the blue velvets are often compared to them. I just don't want to deal with so many water changes or worry about TDS creeping up.

Thanks @Zoidburg and @dukydaf for helping me out. I'll wait a few more days before I top off with RO Water. :)


Ro Water

Tds: 4
Temp:72.8
ph:6.4
gh:3
kh:3
no2:0
no3:0
ammonia: .25

My tank

Tds:301
Temp:73.1
ph:7.6
gh:9
kh:6
no2:0
no3:5
ammonia:0
 

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It would be the crushed coral that is most likely raising your parameters.


With only 6 shrimp, you should only need to feed 1-2 times a week. Feeding daily is over-kill.


RO water should be 0 GH and KH with no ammonia.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
@Zoidburg Alright, I'll see if I can take out the crush coral, I have Fluval stratum that will lower the ph so my strategy is to just take out a spoonful every two days and let the fluval lower the ph slowly. I don't want to have my ph change overnight. Or I could take the shrimps out and let the fluval lower the ph for two days and then drip acclimate them back in. Yeah I don't know why my RO water is having gh, kh, and ammonia, I bought it from a lfs.
 

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@Zoidburg Alright, I'll see if I can take out the crush coral, I have Fluval stratum that will lower the ph so my strategy is to just take out a spoonful every two days and let the fluval lower the ph slowly. I don't want to have my ph change overnight. Or I could take the shrimps out and let the fluval lower the ph for two days and then drip acclimate them back in. Yeah I don't know why my RO water is having gh, kh, and ammonia, I bought it from a lfs.
It's not RO water. They probably screwed up and put tank water in it rather than RO. Our LFS keeps lots of water in brute trash cans, and I could totally see someone putting the wrong water in the wrong one and then filling up a tote with the wrong water.
 

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Tds: 4
ph:6.4
gh:3
kh:3
I guess the sungrow mineral rock could also cause a TDS increase but I have no experience with them. Mostly likely the crushed coral as other have said. Yes a TDS of 300-400 in no problem for most neos. However you need to be sure that whatever increases your TDS is not dangerous for them. A change in TDS tells you nothing about what caused it.

Something doesn't add up here with your RO water. If you trust your TDS meter than you have RO water and have messed up the GH and KH testing / contaminated the samples. Due to chemistry /physics water that has a GH of 3 and KH of 3 cannot have a TDS of 4. The low pH is another giveaway.

Let us know if the TDS keeps increasing after you remove the coral.

Regards,
duky
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
So I took out the crush coral except for a very small half tablespoon from the filter. I'll keep you updated on how the TDS is rising. Thanks for all your help and advices, i'll definitely post again by the end of this week.
To answer some questions,
@Zoidburg I'm going to use the RO to top off the jar, and for water change, a 30% tap water with conditioner change. I read that this is the way to go for shrimps.
@Chocochip03 I'll take a look into that product, the only thing keeping me back is I have a 4 gallon jar and I'm not good at math.......maybe when I have the space for a 10 gallon, ill try it out.
@dukydaf Yeah I agree with you, I probably did the test wrong or had contaminated test tubes, after all I had to do two tank water test .
 
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