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Kingo

Amateur hour selective breeding...

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Kingo

Thanks JC's, 

@jayc I work in construction and have access to pvc grates for civil work, this should be perfect. @jc12 do you generally use a layer of inert substrate  under your active substrate to create height? 

Pretty sure it's all ready to go now, just need to start the tear down, test the AO Cal BEP for TDS fluctuations and put it together. 

Thanks again for the advice all. 

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jc12
45 minutes ago, Kingo said:

 I work in construction and have access to pvc grates for civil work, this should be perfect.

Any chance you can show us what kind of PVC grates you have access to. There is never too many ideas/options for good aquascaping materials/tools. ?

48 minutes ago, Kingo said:

 do you generally use a layer of inert substrate  under your active substrate to create height?

Not for my breeding tanks/rack as breeding/shrimp health/water parameters are the focus and not aesthetics. I have minimal hardscape in my breeding tanks so I can observe the shrimps and it would be easier to catch/separate them for selective breeding.

Yes, for my display tanks. I use egg crates + lava rocks to create height and placement. Exactly like what @inkevnito has mentioned in his earlier post. Sometimes I use corflutes to separate planting areas to discourage root growth into another 'area' (especially carpeting plants) or to hold up the substrate to create a steeper slope.

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Kingo

This is so good. I have all this gear in my site shed, @jc12 I will flick u a line tomorrow re the pvc grate. The hardscape in my nano is actually '100-300mm drainage aggregate' $60 a tonne. Picked off my site for free 99. 

I realise I am steering a little away from a conventional breeding setup, selfishly wanting a nice looking tank to boot. Hopefully over the next 6-12 months my numbers have increased to a point where I can consider a rack. 

My second nano shrimp tank has been set up, cycled and empty for a few months waiting for berries! 

Corflute! Again great idea, I literally have tonnes and m2 of material all over site...

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Kingo

So the feedback for those that are interested on all my suppliers so far has been good. David from Aquaristic Onlinegot back to me and has said that if the batch turns out not to be useable they will take further action as necessary, with a footnote reminder that this product is not marketed towards shrimp... 

Minor issue on my brand new, small, 3 stage, portable RO unit from FSA. (I take notes and record params on most of my stuff to review, change plans and learn from later on so I can nerd out over stats and stroke my aquarium beard knowingly.) 

Unsure if this is commmon for RO units as it's my first experience with them. After following the setup instructions, I tested the water, after the first 5 Litres - 75 TDS, and took just under 30 mins to make 5 litres. Progressively, I tested a cup after each 5 litres and got the following stats - 

After 10 - 44 TDS

After 15 - 31 TDS

After 20 - 27 TDS

After 25 - 22 TDS

and so forth up to 50 odd. I left it flush for several hours after this. The  next day, first cup measured back up to 25 (after achieving 17 TDS the previous night). I emailed the supplier who was prompt to reply and mentioned it should drop over the next few days which it is, and suggested I could blast the pre and post filters directly to wash out the fines. I have had it running a few hours each afternoon and now have a reading of 8...

Is this common? Or even much of a deal? I will be re mineralising anyway so a swing of an extra 8 has not hurt my existing tackers in a much smaller tank... 

any tips and tricks with RO.

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jayc
8 minutes ago, Kingo said:

Is this common

well it's not uncommon. It depends on your starting tap water TDS. And the type of filters you have.

8 TDS is nothing to worry about really, since you will be re-mineralising with the good stuff (Calcium & Magnesium).

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Kingo

Thankya sir, 

I had meant to add this to my long winded rambling meanderings...

Finally (probably not, I know I ramble) snail-acide products. I know copper is kryptonite to shrimp but I was planning on - tearing tank down, separating plants and stock. Cleaning tank and plants with snail treatment and rinsing the plants a few times before re introduction post rescape. 

Anyone used it? Stay the hell away or it shouldn't be a big deal? 

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jayc
2 hours ago, Kingo said:

Stay the hell away

don't use it in the tank.

Any residue can be harmful to the shrimp. Not worth the risk.

 

Maybe rinsing new plants is ok. But wash it off thoroughly. 

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Kingo

Thanks @jayc,  read last night that bleach works also - I might try that first. Now to source a couple of tubs for the transfer and cycle period and we are good to go. Thanks for the advice mate, you have probably saved countless shrimps and google hours!

 

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jc12
16 hours ago, Kingo said:

The hardscape in my nano is actually '100-300mm drainage aggregate' $60 a tonne. Picked off my site for free 99. 

Hopefully over the next 6-12 months my numbers have increased to a point where I can consider a rack.

I am not familiar with drainage aggregate but you may have to check and ensure they do not leech out anything that might alter your water parameters.

16 hours ago, Kingo said:

Hopefully over the next 6-12 months my numbers have increased to a point where I can consider a rack.

Or you can set up a rack first then let the numbers increase. "If you build it, they will come". ?

5 hours ago, Kingo said:

Thanks @jayc,  read last night that bleach works also - I might try that first.

Normal supermarket unscented bleach - 1 part bleach to 19 part water. Most people use it to eradicate snails, eggs and algae. Usually stem plants and moss don't do well with bleach dips. Some can pull through with 20-60 seconds dip, some never recover. 'Harder' plants like anubias, bolbitis, etc can survive 120 seconds or more. Dip at your own risk. Some snails like Malaysian trumpet snails are invincible... almost god like.

I have also used flubendazole 50mg/g against snails with success. I have them handy as a discus wormer so I use it. It does not affect plants or beneficial bacteria but I cannot guarantee it is shrimp safe. I do half dose and have used it half a dozen times with shrimps including TB and CRS and they have been fine so far.

Another option is potassium permanganate. I have never used this myself so no experience to share.

What I do and my recommendation is to have a quarantine tank/bucket. Do a quick bleach dip and leave them in there for 4-6 weeks. Squash any snails if they should survive the dip. Another quick dip at the end of quarantine period and then add to tank. So far my tanks have been snail free by following this process.

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Kingo
4 hours ago, jc12 said:

I am not familiar with drainage aggregate but you may have to check and ensure they do not leech out anything that might alter your water parameters.

Or you can set up a rack first then let the numbers increase. "If you build it, they will come". 1f61c.png

Normal supermarket unscented bleach - 1 part bleach to 19 part water. Most people use it to eradicate snails, eggs and algae. Usually stem plants and moss don't do well with bleach dips. Some can pull through with 20-60 seconds dip, some never recover. 'Harder' plants like anubias, bolbitis, etc can survive 120 seconds or more. Dip at your own risk. Some snails like Malaysian trumpet snails are invincible... almost god like.

I have also used flubendazole 50mg/g against snails with success. I have them handy as a discus wormer so I use it. It does not affect plants or beneficial bacteria but I cannot guarantee it is shrimp safe. I do half dose and have used it half a dozen times with shrimps including TB and CRS and they have been fine so far.

Another option is potassium permanganate. I have never used this myself so no experience to share.

What I do and my recommendation is to have a quarantine tank/bucket. Do a quick bleach dip and leave them in there for 4-6 weeks. Squash any snails if they should survive the dip. Another quick dip at the end of quarantine period and then add to tank. So far my tanks have been snail free by following this process.

You are a genius sir!

The quarantine tank and period is the way forward. Perfect. 

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inkevnito

Thanks @jayc, Yep i meant that egg crate :) 

@jc12 I didnt have any algae problems with the clay root tabs, tbh i dont think i really needed it. You'll do fine without it but this was sometime last year when i discovered dino dung and wanted to test. Just super messy and a pain if you remove any stem plants out, the particles settle all over your plants and mosses, so you just got to flick your finger through when the waters a bit clear. I have tried API root tabs, the dino dung lasts WAYYYYYYYYYYY longer. Overall, like you mentioned, theres no need for any root tabs as the substrate was produced to fulfill that nutrient need. 

And yep, i purchased the 16kg scoria bag from bunnings, was enough to heighten a 4ft on both sides and back of tank, and left over for filter media. 

On 8/9/2017 at 4:57 PM, jc12 said:

Not for my breeding tanks/rack as breeding/shrimp health/water parameters are the focus and not aesthetics. I have minimal hardscape in my breeding tanks so I can observe the shrimps and it would be easier to catch/separate them for selective breeding.

I have tried keeping my tank minimal too.. i tell yah, its not easy for me ahhaha I start off with one driftwood with moss, then slowly adding other mosses and plants.. Becomes a jungle real quick ?
 

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Kingo

I can now confirm that there is a CAL BEP bad batch issue. ?

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inkevnito

Thats a bugger mate.? what are the readings?

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Kingo

Please ignore my last post..I will start again by asking that readers please excuse my ignorance. You can google and study all the forums and studies in the world but nothing beats experience..I am a newcomer and trying to learn best practice on good advice! 

20 litres of RO water
Added 5 drops of seachem prime
8 ml of seachem replenish
To reach a GH of 6, brought the TDS to 127

After adding this water to the tank, TDS jumped to 342. The tank has only slate rock in it ATM, which I tested with vinegar and nitrate test kit 1. I then made a new batch of RO water and left the slate in it overnight, with no rise in TDS.

I also tested pure RO and a small layer of BEP in a Tupperware container. It bumped to 350. 

I followed the directions on the website (no rinsing). Apart from @revolutionhope has anyone needed to do several water changes to use this substrate? I have perhaps been overly cautious and testing as I go, instead of filling the tank..

I have just added a second 20 which has dropped the TDS to 220, I may have been panicking over nothing. Proof will be once I have the tank completely full. I will now keep my mouth shut and go back to my business. (Double checking the RO unit filling my 20 litre buckets). 

How do I start a journal? I have a few choice pics of what I have done so far, and reckon a bloke like me would get a laugh or two out of the mistakes I have made along the way...

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revolutionhope

The tds should not be skyrocketing like that with a decent SHRIMP substrate. When you say a thin layer of substrate with RO - can you quantity the amount of substrate e.g. depth and area of the container and volume of RO added ?

 

will

 

 

 

 

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Kingo

Ha, yes @revolutionhope as the manufacturer pointed out quite quickly this substrate is marketed towards plants. 

I didnt measure the Tupperware, but it was a small rectangular tub. Approx 1.5 cm layer of BEP, with around 10 cm of water on it. I am about to start planting and the final measure of water so we will see if it drops to an appropriate level for caridinas... 

What brand do you use now? My two little nano's I have used shrimp sand and fluval stratum - I was not a big fan of either (SS was so light that every time shrimps sneezed, substrate went everywhere and fluval was ok..) I will say that the texture, grain, look ad usability of BEP is impressive - i just hope the levels drop to an appropriate figure at the end of today. 

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revolutionhope

Lol I've never seen a shrimp sneeze before that would be funny. I was always a BEP boy. Im about to setup 2 tanks with ADA amazonia and 2 with ADA amazonia light once room is ready and I will report on the progress when I do.

 

will

 

 

If yours is like mine it will continue to leach minerals for a month or so I'm afraid to say :-( you could try rinsing it I suppose.

 

will

 

 

 

 

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Kingo

I should rename this thread 'Kingo's consistent questions thread'... 

I added the second 20L to the tank, re mineralised to 6 GH @ 132 TDS, this dropped the tank to 220 TDS but the water is now at 10 GH

I probably should have added straight RO to the last 20 but remineralised it to 2 GH @ 105 TDS. The tank is full now but is at 220 TDS and 10 GH. Added my minimal plants. Obviously not at the correct params so I guess I will need to play a PWC game and remineralise in the tank? Suggestions? Is that normal? 

There is also a significant NH3 bump too, which is not a big deal - I will let it cycle with a mature filter. 

 

 

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jc12

Personally when I start up a new shrimp tank, I usually add RO water without remineralising it.

This will allow me to observe any rise or changes in parameters so I can rule out any source water issue. Also since there is no live stock I don't see a need to add minerals.

Once the tank is cycled, I will do a 90% water change and refill with RO water and remineralised to the desired parameters. I'll let it run for 3 more days, do a final water parameter test and if it is spot on I will introduce live stock.

Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk

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inkevnito

jc12 pointed out a very good tip, to just cycle with straight RO. Monitor any changes easily as you know the water is always the same, instead of juggling mineral content with remineraliser.

It's true, the BEP was never intended for shrimp, but was popular by shrimpers because of the 'buffering' affect it has. I'm still a big fan of BEP as ive never experienced a bad batch and ive gone through 6! Benibachi has also been good for me too. 

It may not be the issue, but how old is your TDS meter/pen and what brand is it? 350 is super high, if you have access to another tds pen to compare to it could rule out a faulty tds pen or which needs calibrating. Just a thought ?

Rinsing the substrate wouldnt be a problem though, or atleast a big one. It's clay based if im correct, and in the aquarium lasts quite long. abit of rinsing cant hurt i reckon. 

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revolutionhope
jc12 pointed out a very good tip, to just cycle with straight RO. Monitor any changes easily as you know the water is always the same, instead of juggling mineral content with remineraliser.

 

It's true, the BEP was never intended for shrimp, but was popular by shrimpers because of the 'buffering' affect it has. I'm still a big fan of BEP as ive never experienced a bad batch and ive gone through 6! Benibachi has also been good for me too. 

 

It may not be the issue, but how old is your TDS meter/pen and what brand is it? 350 is super high, if you have access to another tds pen to compare to it could rule out a faulty tds pen or which needs calibrating. Just a thought 

 

Rinsing the substrate wouldnt be a problem though, or atleast a big one. It's clay based if im correct, and in the aquarium lasts quite long. abit of rinsing cant hurt i reckon. 

@inkevnito: I've also always been a fan of BEP until my recent experience. Not sure if you read the earlier parts of this thread. But at Kingos request I confirmed with the wholesaler that the current batch in Australia (and yes i also confirmed.currently all retailers are stocking this) is the same high TDS leaching super potent bags at all the shops. At least as of some time early this year. Mine was bought in November last year. You Don't have to take my word for it but I am convinced it is not particularly suitable for shrimp until they send another lot over to oz I'm sad to say.

 

I am not great with water chemistry but I think best bet If you wish to try it is to 1) rinse it well and 2) use even less than 1/4of the recommended amount (if using RO). As I said earlier I used 1/3 - 1/4 of their suggested volume and it released over 400ppm into the tank within days followed by many hundreds more ppm worth as I did my waterchanges. And even with the reduced amount the pH was at 5.1 or 5.2 at best. Sucks I know.

 

will

 

 

PS I should add that the wholesaler did his best to make sure all the retailers removed the statement about no ammonia from the details and that he has promised he will do his best to make sure the next lot that comes will be not like this. I will be the first to let you all know when the next lot hits our shores and our awesome forum sponsor @thetechden gets the new lot in stock :-)

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inkevnito

@revolutionhope sounds good Will, and yep, i did read all of the thread posts, but find it weird as i recently set up a tank for a client, using 2 bags of normal grain BEP two months ago (from TTD) and all parameters are similar to my own batches purchased in 2015 and 2016. 

Quite interested to see if others have experienced this also! Even so, i do hope the next batch is good to go! :)
For now, i'll stick with ada amazonia for other peoples tanks. and benibachi for the shrimps till we find out more about the high TDS batches or when a fresh batch comes in. 

Is there anyone on here trying the amazonia light yet that you know of?

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revolutionhope
2 minutes ago, inkevnito said:

@revolutionhope sounds good Will, and yep, i did read all of the thread posts, but find it weird as i recently set up a tank for a client, using 2 bags of normal grain BEP two months ago (from TTD) and all parameters are similar to my own batches purchased in 2015 and 2016. 

Quite interested to see if others have experienced this also! Even so, i do hope the next batch is good to go! :)
For now, i'll stick with ada amazonia for other peoples tanks. and benibachi for the shrimps till we find out more about the high TDS batches or when a fresh batch comes in. 

In my mind there's two possibilities - one is that TTD had some old stock still, two is that perhaps not all of the bags that were imported were the super-fertile type.
Is there anyone on here trying the amazonia light yet that you know of?

I'm about to setup 4 ADA light and one regular ADA just for the sake of being able to advise others of how they compare. When I say about; hopefully in the next week or two.

 

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Kingo

@inkevnito my pen is an el cheapo, but I use it fairly regularly across 3 different tanks as well as RO water and demineralised water - there has been no significant change to any of these, and de mineralised/RO continue to read at or very close to zero TDS

It appears there has been a 100 odd unit leach of TDS in the initially added water column, but as @jc12 mentioned - it should not be a big deal if I cycle, drop 90% out in PWC, refIll with pure RO and re mineralise in the tank. Thinking out loud, perhaps I should wait a few days to see if there is any further TDS leach before re mineralising. I will hold off any further updates on this one until it's cycled and go back to fiddling over my two nano shrimp tanks and willing my mischlings to breed...

I swear my common sense is lost when it comes to aquariums. Thanks yet again to the advice. 

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Kingo

Morning gentlemen (I use the term loosely),

So, my return from holidays has been tumultuous for this modest 3 tank numpty. First check was of course on my mischlings; I was stoked to see the first berries of a new mama at around 160 days old. Yiiiiiiiiiharrrr! Another moult, 3 days later and my prize female (larger than the rest with solid colour all over) is also berried! Happy days. I had read they reach breeding age at 85-100 ish days, so I was concerned my tiny nano was not suitable or other parameters I cannot measure were not suitable - or maybe just late bloomers. Either way, we are almost complete at my first breeding cycle, hope there are a few TB's in the first two batches!

My newly set up larger tank however, is still cycling (or stalled?). Dr google and paranoia can be a dangerous thing. I am now 3 weeks and 6 days in, having started with a cycled filter for this fishless and shrimpless cycle. Some of the local legends here may recall I have re'scaped with a potentially suss/'extra fertile' batch of CAL BEP substrate. My daily TDS measurements before holiday departure showed the TDS rise ~ 30 units/day which levelled out at ~ 350 TDS after 8 days and NH3 off the charts at ~ 8 PPM

Two weeks in Singapore (and some incredible food, drinks, good times with friends & aquarium store visits later) had me return to see a drop of 15-20 TDS (plants drinking in a little of that good stuff?) but no drop in NH3 or any evidence of NO2

Enter dr google and paranoid numpty... I started reading up on blogs/journals/forums and found a few items I was concerned about. The potential for stalling a cycle due to excessive NH3 - the BB cannot overcome high levels. Several suggestions to keep this parameter at or under 4 PPM while cycling. 

The other item is the fact that NH3 converts to NH4 at low PH levels and BB struggles to grow in more acidic water. I have readings of under 6. Am I doing something wrong? Should I have cycled with a high PH column? Does buffering substrates normally leach this much TDS and NH3? Both nano's took 2-4 weeks with mature filters using fluval stratum and shrimp sand. 

My plan of attack has been to lower NH3, so two days ago I completed 20% PWC and added extra filter media from cycled tank - bowl of ceramic noodles and a sponge. 

ANY advice is greatly appreciated! Once again, I apologise for my long winded posts....

 

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