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CurleyJones321

New Shrimp Keeper

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sdlTBfanUK

Really sorry to hear about your health problems and I hope you start feeling better soon!

I completely understand about the work capability, and as with you, wouldn't be able to drain and refill a tank so am just leaving my tank to run until I get 0 readings on Ammonia/Nitrite and about 10 on my nitrate strips (it worked last time so hopefully it will work again). Hopefully the substrate will reduce your GH so then you won't need to do a 'sizeable' water change as the other parameters were ok! 

At least your tank is at PH7 so hopefully yours may cycle quicker than mine? It sounds like you will want it up and running ASAP if you are getting so many baby shrimps and as you say, I think they hide a lot when they are berried (especially when they are ready to drop) and especially as there are fish sharing the tank, it would be natural to want to protect the eggs and babies.

How many fish do you have with the baby platys you had a while back? When you think the new tank is cycled you could just put 2 or 3 of the fish into the tank as a final check for a week or so, in fact it makes sense to gradually transfer anyway rather than put them all in in one go. Also, if you can manage to keep both tanks running at the same time and want as many of the baby shrimps to survive as possible you should probably leave the really young ones in the old tank until they have grown a bit (probably mean running the old tank and the new for about a month) as I had many tiny ones that I transferred that I never saw again as I think they were too young really to be moved so didn't make it?

I hope everything goes well with both your health and the tanks!

Simon

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CurleyJones321

Health thing is long over due, its a congenital heart defect that i was told as a child i was going to have the surgery at 18 and im now almost 29. the Procedure im having is called the Ross Procedure and it has a 98.5% survival ratio and thats with people who are in their 60's and 70's who usually need this done and the doctor said because i have such physical ability for someone with my condition i probably have about 99.9% chance. but i will be in hospital for at least 2 weeks at the Royal Brompton.

i would like these tanks set up before i actually go in but yeah im limited in what i can do water change wise. Even though i only do 2 liters at a time, 20 odd trips taking 20 mins a go each to do is a killer. I currently have 3 adult platy's (1 male 2 female, the parents) and approximately 7 - 10 baby's. im thinking of moving the males into the new tank once the tanks reading 0 everything ammonia related. I'm actually trying to breed a new colouration in this specific genus of Platy (Viriatus) and im starting to get results but i need to get a new male in order to stop in-breeding at the moment that will cause deformity's in the fish. the 'old' tank will then move into the lounge as a cull tank for me to sell things on Gum tree to the locals. I'd give them away for free but my theory is if i do that people will just get them to feed to their cats and things so im going to ask for a nominal charge of like 50p to £1 for each fish/shrimp

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sdlTBfanUK

I am sure that you will be in good hands with that hospital in London and you have youth on your side as a bonus so hopefully you will recover quickly after the operation. I know what you mean about lugging water around and my 30 litres took me 5 days doing some each day so I can genuinely sympathise and appreciate what that involves.

You are certainly doing well with the tank to have baby shrimps and baby fish, no wonder you need a bigger tank? Hopefully the 'cycle' will all happen quickly enough with you putting used stuff in it to kick start. Have you considered putting a few of the fish in the tank, they call it 'sacrificial' but when I did it that way the fish survived with no problems, and my fish live permanently with about 50 nitrate (the strips I use though only show in 25 increments?) in my old tank and don't seem to EVER have had a problem. The fish will poop and help speed it up I assume? I guess that is why you should stock tanks slowly, so that the 'cycle' can slowly adjust to the extra load?

I will probably do my first maintenance on my newly set up shrimp tank tomorrow, though I won't actually clean the filters or change any water yet so there won't be much involved in reality but I just want it to be in my regular schedule as before! I am only getting a nitrate reading of 25 at the moment, no nitrite or ammonia! It is pretty much going as before.

Keep cheerful and smiling!

Simon

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CurleyJones321

to be honest I've had cold water tanks before and with the small tank when i got it in October, i just set up i only waited a day to add fish even with brand new everything and ALL the fish survived. I could add Tyrone my original male to the tank as he has now done his job creating my first offspring that some actually are redder than their parents and im pretty sure their mostly female so he could technically be seen as a 'sacrificial' fish. i could then add any of his children that i dont want to the tank as the tank develops. Then when im ready to add shrimp I'll switch the fish over and move the small tank to its desired destination. its just about timing when to do that... i could do it now i suppose being as the tank has been going for 3 days at full capacity.

new (large) tank wise im thinking of taking out maybe 2 liters of water because the floating plants are going yellow so i think there is a light problem? the plants are about 50mm (2 inches) away from the LED's

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CurleyJones321

Test Kit wise i use JBL test kit that tests PH, NH4, N03, N02, dKH, i got it from maidenhead aquatics and it cost about £40 per kit and they also do a bigger one that includes things like Iron (FE) and P04 among others but its about £25 more and i thought why bother spending the money on that when i dont need it. the Kit lasts me at 2 tests a week about 5 months. Also available on amazon for a few pence more:-

https://www.amazon.co.uk/JBL-Aquarium-Water-Analysis-Combi/dp/B00CPULHDM/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=JBL+test+kit&qid=1559755900&s=computers&sr=8-1

i use the TDS pen from the zero water jug and P04 and dGH test kits i again got from amazon for about £8.50 per set. P04 kit is 100ml & hasn't run out yest so i cant tell you how long it lasts but its been about 6 months and just under half full. dGH kit is 10ml and really depends on your conditions how long it lasts because its not a set amount each time its 1 drop per degree, but only lasted me about 3 months per bottle.

i haven't had to deal with medicines yet so i cant comment on those

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jayc
10 hours ago, CurleyJones321 said:

Even though i only do 2 liters at a time, 20 odd trips taking 20 mins a go each to do is a killer.

Ironically, this is probably what is keeping you fit and strong.

:5565bf0371061_D:

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sdlTBfanUK

That sound like a good plan to me to gradually transfer the fish over to the new tank like that. If there has not been any ammonia or nitrite readings for a few days and nitrates are low it may be worth transferring the daddy!

I use an assortment of various drop test kits for most things other than ammonia and nitrite/nitrate which I use strips as the drop ones were a bit too fiddly for me on the nitrate or nitrite tests? Almost everything comes from ProShrimp as it is easier and his prices are very good as is his service, the stuff has always arrived next day etc. I used to buy stuff from him when he was an ebay seller a long time ago, before he set up his 'bona fide' business so he has done well and come a long way. I guess your Gh test won't last very long if you had 30 drops per test last time. I think ProShrimp sells refills if you only need 1 test refill but you would have to look on his website. Usually 1 single item is sent postage free (unless it is very bulky).

I had put some of the floating weed in the new shrimp setup and that isn't doing too well and going a bit yellow like yours, but it may be ok in time when the tank settles/establishes a bit more?

Taking out 2 litres of water means you have a nice round figure all the time of 40 litres so will also make life easier for any calculating you may need to do at an time. You ca keep that 2 litres in a container and use it when you do a water change if you have something to keep it in, spare jug or bottle etc, or use it for top up?

Simon

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CurleyJones321
23 hours ago, jayc said:

Ironically, this is probably what is keeping you fit and strong.

:5565bf0371061_D:

funnilly enough before just over a year ago when my doctor asked me to please stop, i was training in various Martial Arts including Mui Thai, Karate, Taekwondo, British Boxing, a little Brazilian Jui-Jitsue and some Kick boxing.

so im going to  offer in Tyrone in the morning its just according to some advice ive received i have set my tank to 28C and Variatus Platies arent supposed to be kept above 27C so im going to lower the heater to 23C and wait until that happens.

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jayc
11 hours ago, CurleyJones321 said:

according to some advice ive received i have set my tank to 28C and Variatus Platies arent supposed to be kept above 27C so im going to lower the heater to 23C and wait until that happens.

Yeah but ... no one said to cycle a tank with fish in it !

A cycling tank should be empty of inhabitants.

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sdlTBfanUK

Thats probably my fault, I thought as there is no ammonia or nitrites it was cycled enough to start adding occupants, especially a few fish that don't seem to mind some nitrates (mine have permanent nitrates and are as happy as a fish can be, I assume, they live long enough). That is what I did last time with the shrimp tank, added one fish before the shrimps just to make sure it was ready and it is better to stagger adding inhabitants rather than going from no inhabitants to 50 inhabitants in one go as that would upset the balance?

Always keen to learn though so if this is wrong PLEASE DO let me know! I won't be adding a fish this time myself though, as I am starting completely afresh I will just get 5 or 6 cheap(ish) shrimp and then grow the numbers gradually, when I get a lower nitrate level. 

MY BAD if I got this wrong though as he is just doing what I said I would do?

Simon

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CurleyJones321

ok so everythings looking good so far TDS on both tanks have been stable and inhabitants of small tank which probably has about 13 fish and 50+ shrimp of various sizes all look healthy. I've done a water change and put the water from the old tank into the new. readings as follows:-

Small (old) tank
TDS - 230
Temp - 22C
PH - 7.5
NH4 - Unreadable
N03 - 1PPM
N02 - 0.1PPM
P04 - P0.5PM
dKH - 3
dGH - 8

Large (New Tank
TDS - 220
Temp - 23C
PH - 6.5
NH4 - Unreadable
N03 - 5PPM
N02 - 0.1PPM
P04 - 0.25PPM
dKH - 2
dGH - 6

So i made a spread sheet to keep track off these reading and obviously to create graphs so i can see whats happening in the tank. its attached and I've colour coded it in what i have so far found to be the most important perimeters and obviously its currently filled in with my details, but feel free to add to it and adapt it however you feel free. I think it will help if you have multiple tanks and want to keep up with everything.

so im pretty sure it was the Substrate being newly placed in the tank for the GH to to so high and im about to turn the tank up to 28C again but im wondering of i should add in another say 2 pinches of fish food to the new tank to boost the Cycle?

Largel Tank Water.xlsx

Edited by CurleyJones321
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CurleyJones321

so i also got some Java Moss for the new tank and thought id show u guys the best way to avoid parasites getting into your tank.basically its like a quarantine tank for plants but way easier. you get a CLEAN jar and if your going to reuse a jar like i have dont use any bleach to clean it. you then add Soda water and put something down to weigh it down if necessary. ive used a spoon because i dont want to add copper to the tank in any way and the spoon is stainless steel. tomorrow im going to change the water and the same the day after that and then im going to add it to the tank.

the idea is the Soda water is essentially carbon dioxide RICH water so any parasites on the plant will be killed off by the C02.

20190607_222927.jpg

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sdlTBfanUK

You have been busy! Like you I keep a spreadsheet as a log of what is happening, though mine isn't as colourful as yours. Some of the 'ideal' parameters for shrimp may be a bit vague though so I would put these more as Ph 6.5-7.5, TDS 150-250, Kh 1-4, Gh 6-8, temp 21-24. The shrimp may be ok in some of the wider parameters on your spreadsheet but they are far from 'ideal'. There will probably be some ideal parameters that don't correspond to both the fish and shrimps so there maybe some parameters outside the 'ideal', but luckily cherry shrimp are fairly adaptable! I don't know anything about the fish you have though.

The PH drop is likely to be the soil and it is good to see the GH went down dramatically, again, must have been the soil substrate as well. 

With the readings from both tanks being so similar I personally (being physically limited) would still try it with Tyrone in the tank now so that there is an inhabitant in the tank (I admit this is controversial to some who have greater experience/capability) as the actual readings on the new tank have lower Nitrate/nitrite (and are decreasing) than the tank it is already living in and fish have a much higher tolerance to low but higher nitrate/nitrite than shrimps, as you show on your spreadsheet, and those numbers in the tank are very low anyway? I will say though that this is just based on what I have done in the past, as I have NEVER actually seen the perfect cycle take place (that theory vs practice again) that is always written about, though a lot of that may be down to my inability to do the lots/large water changes and maintenance which is usually part of that normal 'cycling' regime? It is your choice of coarse and I in no way think this should be a normal way to cycle as JayC's way is undoubtedly the best IF you can manage all the work that is required to do it that way?

I am impressed that you are managing to keep 13 fish and 50+ shrimps alive in the small tank, they will be much happier I am sure when they get to their new roomier home. Did lowering the water level help with the dying floating weed? The GH has crept up in my newly set up tank so I assume it also is the substrate, though nowhere near as high as yours got, and as the TDS is also too high, IN THEORY I can just change some of the water for pure RO water at some stage to bring them back into line, but I am just letting it all run for now - I may do all the tests later today as a treat?

Simon

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CurleyJones321

So i decided that the best thing to to would be to wait untill i have 0 readings on everything Nitrate cycle related before adding a Fish. but i have added about  days worth of flake food to the tank as a source of ammonia.

the Aquarium Sponge arrived today and i cut it to shape to fit the intake for the filter that has a cover that detaches and has a place to fit the sponge to stop any shrimp getting in. it was easy to cut with a sharp knife. 

20190608_152131 (2).jpg

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sdlTBfanUK

I am assuming the small half circle thing in the picture clips on the tank side to cover the big lower slots. The top slots I think are there for water to over flow into the back should the bottom ones get blocked. Putting sponge in the small plastic cover will do the job but it will be fiddly to keep removing it to clean being that all the water passes through such a small bit of sponge near the bottom of the tank, so is likely to get blocked quite quickly.

I can only go by the drawing of the workings on ProShrimp website but if it were my tank (and it is the same as my small one I used to start the taiwan bee shrimp in, so this is what I did to that) and the sponge in the middle section is big enough, I would move the sponge from the middle section to the left back section (viewing from the front) as long as the sponge is pushed down far enough to cover the lower slots and high enough to cover the cut out section to let the water flow into the mid section. The sponge is then doing what it is intended to do still and almost as easy to get too (though a bit further down in the back) and the sponge is stopping the shrimps from getting into the back. The small bit of sponge in the slot cover (in the picture) can then be removed and it will be much easier to maintain as you only need to clean the big sponge in the back.

OK, that is what I said I would do, however, I did and would actually do the following variation on the above.........  I Got new sponge and cut it to completely fill the section behind the slots (the sponge wasn't thick enough so I just used  2 pieces), this way you know the bottom slots are definitely covered without having to even look/judge and it is much easier to remove the sponge to clean if it goes right to the top so you can pull it out. You can still cut squares out to put the ceramic rings and carbon in if you want to, though I don't use those so wouldn't bother, but you will need to make sure any cut outs don't go near where the sponge needs to be covering the slots. And, as above I wouldn't bother with the tiny piece of sponge in the slot cover as that will likely just get blocked too quickly.

I am also waiting for my nitrates to drop, though the strips I use start at 10 so I wont ever actually get a 0 reading, but once it gets to the 10 I will go shopping for just a few shrimps to 'test' everything is ok first! Patience required!!!!!!!

Simon

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CurleyJones321

Ok so its been a few days and ive checked my readings after adding bottled BB (the same brand of bottled BB I've ever used so i shouldn't have any problems with bacteria clash?). I removed about half a liter of water but that's really the limit to keep the spounge in the filter covered in water. ive checked my readings:- 

Small (old) tank
TDS - 233
Temp - 22C
PH - 7.5
NH4 - Unreadable
N03 - 1PPM
N02 - 0.05PPM
P04 - 0.5PPM
dKH - 3
dGH - 6

Large (New) Tank
TDS - 244
Temp - 28C
PH - 4
NH4 - Unreadable
N03 - 1PPM
N02 - 0.2PPM
P04 - 1PPM
dKH - 1
dGH - 7

so yeah the Small tank seems to have almost gotten over 'new tank syndrome' even with its constant population. the shrimp are still breeding and im constantly counting lots of shrimp but now the first batch of shrimp are approaching adult hood its going to start getting difficult to properly count, so i can only give you right now's reading as a last reading of 5 adults and 32 shrimplets of various sizes.

Large Tank wise im glad i didnt add Tyrone as he would be having a very hard time with the acidity. i assume that means the first step in the cycling process of my tank is done.


@jayc 'Give this a few weeks, and once you see pH drop below 7.0, do a water change with dechlorinated tap water and add a pinch of flake food (or that prawn). This should bring the pH up again, and adds more ammonia food for the BB. Keep testing ammonia, nitrite and nitrates during the course of cycling. When you see ammonia and nitrate at zero with high nitrates, your tank is cycled. 

At this point you drain the tank of 99% water (making sure the filter media stays wet) and add your RO water remineralised to the required TDS levels. Use this time before adding livestock to adjust pH, GH, KH and TDS.'

im off to check the fridge and prepare some water.

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sdlTBfanUK

Sounds like we both have busy days ahead with our tanks. I am expecting that is ALL I will do today but at least it is a cool and damp day! Lights on and heater on in the house, anyone would think it is autumn here.............

I don't think any of my tanks have ever gotten as low as PH4, thats quite a drop? Do you know whether the TDS increase is down to evaporation or do you think it is the soil substrate?

I added 2 cooked prawns to my tank yesterday so we will see if that makes any difference, no ammonia reading yet but we will see, a snail is eating away on one of them! 

If you think the sponge may dry out whilst you are changing water or something you can always take it out of the back section and put it horizontally in the main tank to keep it wet as you don't have any critters in there yet? During normal water changes I think it should be safe to keep it in situ at the back as it will still stay damp.

One of my original neons (very old now) has started to get twitchy and lose the colour in the red of his tail so he is near the end. I tried yesterday to catch him so I could put him in the shrimp tank but he obviously isn't that bad yet as he is too quick for me to catch?

I am planning to change one third of the water with pure RO water today and that should bring the parameters to almost ideal TDS and GH, all the others are ok already. I managed to get the 8L of filtered water into a bucket over the previous 2 days ready! 

32 baby shrimps already, you must be doing everything right (and very pleased), hopefully they can go into the new tank soon. I would transfer the fish into it first though as they are less sensitive.

Hope you get it all done today, and enjoy doing it but don't over do it. Also hope you are happy with the new tank and setup?

I will be happy when I have done mine as that is definitely the worst of it over, no more BIG work from that point................just patience!

Simon

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kms
Quote

What is the most accurate way to test TDS, I have 3 TDS meter, and all give different reading with differences of around 80PPM

 

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sdlTBfanUK

I would get some pure RO water and try them all, any that have a reading of more than a couple can then be thrown away as you don't need 3, especially if some are wrong. I have 2 (1 came with the zerowater) and they are only a few apart but I always just use the one until that breaks.

Simon

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CurleyJones321

i use 2 TDS pens and I have noticed a difference of about 20TDS but they both read 0 on RO water. I just pick my favorite and stick with that, as long as your using the same one every time you will get fairly consistent results.

i think the TDS is a combination of me adding friendly BB and evaporation i have tested it an BB im using adds about 15TDS.

ive done a water change on the large tank because thats what ive been told to do and im going to do my regular maintenance this weekend and obviously add the old water to the new tank. then test everything again on Sunday.

also, if you want something good for your shrimps in your tank that's fairly cheep, look up dragon stone, i just had some arrive and am currently in the process of soaking it to cleaning it. i can upload a picture of the stuff i've got if you like? another Ebay Bargain!

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sdlTBfanUK

Dragon stone is beautiful and I am sure it will look fab in the new tank. I am not using any rock/stone after last time causing the PH rise, playing it safe this time! I saw it on ProShrimp I think, and looks great. Thanks for the offer though, and hopefully you can attach a picture of your new tank at some point.

I have done my water change and it has got the TDS to about where I am aiming for so it was worth the work and I can now sit back and wait to see if any 'cycle' happens, that's what I have to tell myself anyway!!!! I shall do the full set of tests at/by the weekend and just do the ammonia/nitrite/nitrate tests daily.

Simon

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kms
3 hours ago, sdlTBfanUK said:

I would get some pure RO water and try them all, any that have a reading of more than a couple can then be thrown away as you don't need 3, especially if some are wrong. I have 2 (1 came with the zerowater) and they are only a few apart but I always just use the one until that breaks.

Simon

The all read 0 ppm with RO water, but when used in the tank, that's when the figures change, how would you check which one is correct.

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sdlTBfanUK

BANG goes that theory then, d'oh!

Are 2 of them close if so I would discard the one which is different. Other options would be to get some water tested by an aquarium shop and see which are nearest and discard the other(s).

I have also come across this with other tests such as droplet tests from different companies so would do as CurleyJones says, and I now do, pick one and stick with that one (at least you should get a consistent), only problem with this is working out which is most accurate to stick to using.

With 3 there must be 2 which are closer than one so I would assume the third is best thrown out, or as I say, take them all to an aquarium shop and get the shop to test one of their tanks and then you use yours to see which is the nearest? I always swoosh mine in the tank about 10 times in case there is some unwanted contaminant on the prongs, rather than just dip it in the tank.

Simon 

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kms

sorry for the late reply.and the hijack

 

apparently my zero water TDS meter is about 40-80 ppm out, my other two, gree and mi.com is only 0-6 ppm differences, I will have another gree TDS coming in, so I will check again.

The reason I got so many TDS meter, as I was going through taobao, I seen all the TDS meter really cheap, about USD 3.50, so I got a few, now my friends also want one, and the gree TDS meter also has temperature. 

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sdlTBfanUK

Good to hear you have got this sorted out! They are cheap to buy and I have one that does temperature as well, like you. Usually 'I believe' if they are inaccurate it may be that one of the prongs may be bent and so you may be able to bend the one which isn't straight to be straight but as you have a few I would just discard the one that is wrong!

Simon

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