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shelbyw93

Blue velvets dieing after molt

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shelbyw93

I have kept tropical fish tanks for years and have never had much of a problem

Recently my LFS got a batch of blue velvet shrimp in and I fell completely in love. The lfs told me they were pretty hardy and just had to be by themselves in order to successfully breed. I had a cycled 6 gallon that was sitting empty (with the exception of some nerites) that was months previously a betta tank. I brought home 5 of the bluest ones they had and everyone did great for about a week. I had my first shrimp molt but discovered it dead the next day. This pattern continued every few days until a month after their purchase when my last remaining blue velvet molted and died after about 24 hours. I was stumped as I kept them the same way I had been successfully keeping my fish without issue. The tank temp was 82 which I of course realized only after the loss of my last shrimp. As far as I know my other water parameters are within range for the shrimp. I contributed the deaths to the high temperature and removed the heater (making the water temp a consistent 75) and awaited the next shipment of blues to my LFS.

I purchased 6 more blue velvets about a week ago. Last night I found a molt and this morning I woke up to a blue dead on its side. All of the other shrimp acting completely normal. I'm stumped. I'm working on finding a copper test to see if my local water could be causing the deaths. Is there anything else you guys can think of? I'll post my tank parameters and pics of my setup below. Any suggestions would be great. Also if I find copper in the tap water what kind of water would you suggest I use (spring, RO, etc) If it doesn't end up being copper what's the next thing I should look for? Thank you in advance!!

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jayc

Hi @shelbyw93,

Sorry to hear the news. 

The pH is a bit high at 7.8. It would be interesting to know the GH&KH readings too. 

Moulting issues are always related to water parameters. Can you get TDS readings?

Do you have a TDS pen? 

Read this... 

 

First thing to do is remove that cuttlefish bone.  It will no doubt be increasing TDS and possibly GH and KH

Then, do a 20% water change to reduce the hardness & pH. If you use tap water and the tap water is pH 7.8, then you need to look at using RO water to reduce pH, TDS, GH.

Have you tested your tap water parameters like pH and TDS so you know what you are working with?

If you can't use RO water, rain water can be an option if you don't live in a polluted city.

 

Edited by jayc

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shelbyw93

Thank you for your reply. I was under the impression they could be kept in a wide range of parameters as long as it was clean (low nitrogen wastes). I've obviously disproven this for myself. I can do RO water I have friends who keep marine tanks. Do you have to worry about the tank having too low mineral content for the shrimp or would I be doing a portion RO AND tap water in the tank to rectify that? Also I'll be moving back from college soon and the water there is well water that goes through a softener. They also have a drinking water filter. I suppose if water parameters were correct out of any of those sources it would be just as good as using RO mixed with tap? If you don't mind me asking because I've received conflicting information what pH, GH, KH, TDS, and hardness should I be aiming for? Thank you!

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jayc
40 minutes ago, shelbyw93 said:

I was under the impression they could be kept in a wide range of parameters as long as it was clean (low nitrogen wastes). I've obviously disproven this for myself.

Yeah, as you have found, shrimp can be difficult to keep outside of their preferred parameters.

 

42 minutes ago, shelbyw93 said:

Do you have to worry about the tank having too low mineral content for the shrimp or would I be doing a portion RO AND tap water in the tank to rectify that?

Yes you do. That's where a TDS meter will come in handy.

RO with a bit of tap water now for water changes to reduce your hardness, pH and TDS (I will assume TDS is high, given you have moulting issues).

But once you reach the ideal parameters, remineralising RO water is a must.

45 minutes ago, shelbyw93 said:

Also I'll be moving back from college soon and the water there is well water that goes through a softener. They also have a drinking water filter. I suppose if water parameters were correct out of any of those sources it would be just as good as using RO mixed with tap?

Not necessarily. I recommend testing any/all water sources that goes into your tank. Never assume it is ok.

Drinking water filters are usually slightly alkaline. That means it has a pH of 7 or higher.

48 minutes ago, shelbyw93 said:

what pH, GH, KH, TDS, and hardness should I be aiming for?

For a Neocaridina which is what a Blue Velvet is, aim for

pH = 6.8 - 7.2

GH = 8-9

KH = 2-4

TDS = 180 - 190.

 

I've listed a smaller target. Sure Neos can live in parameters slightly outside those ... but then again, "Aim small, miss small". 

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