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Discussion Starter #1
I have a few ghost shrimp on hand that I've decided to use to test my quarantined plants and other things for toxins. How long should I keep them in there?

I'm testing for pesticides.
 

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If there were pesticides I would think they shrimp would die pretty fast. Maybe a week?

Why do you think the plants might have pesticides?

If you think they do, I would put them in a quarantine tank with some activated carbon in the filter and swap it out about twice a week for a couple of weeks, and do some very large water changes. This will dilute and remove the pesticide from the water, and the action of the water movement against the plants ought to remove the pesticide from the surface of the leaves.

If you think the plants were treated with a systemic pesticide I would not use them in the tank, but might take cuttings, grow these out, then take more cuttings of the new material.
 

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Just Curious As to Why

Hi

Just curious as to why you think there might be toxins and by toxins do you mean principally acaricides and insecticides?

12-24 hours should be long enough, if the ghost shrimp are still going, really unlikely any toxins that affect invertebrates and they are usually the most sensitive.



The most likely toxins are organophosphate (replacement for organochlorine compounds) and carbamate insecticides.



Though pyrethrins are taking over as it is considered the safest of all (to mammals anyway) and should there be a dose of pyrethrins that is not fatal (unlikely) the shrimp will stay away.

Respectfully
Joe
FBTB
 

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Many of today's pesticides break down pretty fast, too. So Joe's comments about a day or two is right. My comments are conservative, just to make sure it (whatever 'it' is) is gone.
 

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You can try using a conductivity meter if there are any dissovled solids in there it will tell you. Mine usually shows at least 220ppm. I guess that's normal for a newly dirted tank?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the replies everyone
I'm testing because I don't want to lose my shrimp colony when I add new plants I get online. Sellers from other countries don't always tell whether or not they use pesticides.

Bump: Call it paranoia, but it's better to be safe than sorry with shrimp right?
 

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Oh, OK.

Wash the new plants in water with maybe a touch of vinegar added, not much, or use something sold several years ago as 'vegie wash'. Look in the supermarket near the fresh produce.
Follow up by rinsing.

If you are still worried then keep the plants in a quarantine tank that has activated carbon in the filter and swap out the AC every few days for a week. Pretty good water movement, too.
 

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Might want to keep any potentially contaminated plants out in the sun while you quarantine them and carbon filter them.

No clue how accurate or useful it is, but I'm under the impression that a lot of pesticides are photo-sensitive, and don't last all too long under exposure to sunlight.

I'd still do everything else described/advised above.
 
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