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beanbag

Baby shrimps

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beanbag

Hello folks,

One of my berried RWP finally hatched babies after a 48 day incubation period.  That seems really long, but I guess the water temperature was on the cool side at 66F over most of this time.  My only question really is if baby shrimp are supposed to just stand around motionless the first few days?  They will swim a few cm and move away when a large shrimp moves by, but otherwise they just stay in one spot for hours at a time, not even grazing with their little claws.  This is the third day since hatching and I still don't see any that are grazing.

The adult shrimp seem to be doing ok, although they are a little quieter today.  (Maybe some are waiting to molt)

Water parameters should be in the range for bee shrimp.  (pH ~5.7, TDS 120, GH5)

Feeding schedule is mostly unchanged: shrimp food once a week, one chunk of mulberry leaf that gets finished in 3-4 days, and one dose of Bacter AE per week.  (Although this time I dosed twice to try and grow some last-minute biofilm).

The only thing I am not really sure about is if there is enough biofilm around.  Nitrates have been at zero for a long time, and some plants are yellowing.  There are splotches of algae on the glass and plants, and there is a wad of moss, but I never see the adult shrimp graze on these areas, so maybe it is the "wrong" kind of algae?

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sdlTBfanUK

You must be so excited and relieved. It was worth the wait though!

Baby shrimp (probably like a lot of creatures) don't move very far at all, I assume it is natures way of helping them survive as the mother would have had them somewhere safe? Of coarse with no predators that can be anywhere in a tank but that instinct to not go far will still be there. It is why it is very difficult to raise baby shrimps in a large tank unless there is enough biofilm as you can't really feed them as it needs to be powder to be small enough and it needs to get to the shrimp wherever they are! You may also scare the babies when you go to the tank as again they would probably 'freeze' if they think they are at some sort of risk - again that happens with a lot of baby animals but they will learn that you are no threat but actually friendly with time.

I did try and feed the babies (if ever I get some this time I will start again) with 'chi ebi' but there are lots of baby/powder foods available, but if you do that be very sparing. I dip a tooth pick in the water (only about 5mm), then in the powder, then back into the tank and swirl it around and HOPE some gets to the right places - I work on the assumption some is better than none, but too much is bad. The more time goes by the more active and adventurous they will become.

It isn't unusual for people to think that no babies were born for a few weeks because of this staying in one spot and being so tiny, many people are surprised a few weeks later?

Hope they do really well and we may see some photos one day?

Simon

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beanbag

Hello,

I don't think I am "out of the woods" just yet until I see the baby shrimps growing up and grazing.  Maybe in another week or so?  I read somewhere that baby shrimp have a 1 week "trial period" where if the conditions aren't right they die off.

Regarding the baby food, I don't remember if I mentioned this or not, but last year when my shrimps had babies, I dosed GlasGarten Shrimp Baby but it polluted the water and everybody died except for one Blue Bolt and the Amanos.  So I am very cautious about any powdered food that can get everywhere.  I guess vegetable-based is ok, like dried mulberry pellets, but things high in protein can go bad.  I also dose a little Bacter AE because at least when the bacteria land somewhere they grow instead of die and rot.

So in any case, my baby shrimp will have to live off Bacter AE and biofilm.

Maybe chlorella powder or bee pollen might be ok too, but I am reluctant to try anything new right now.  (Should have tested those earlier)

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sdlTBfanUK

Are you still seeing the babies, there probably is enough biofilm at this stage so hopefully they will be fine? How many have you seen?

Simon

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kms

I've had babies about 6 times, just treat the tanks as normal as you have been before, you can't do anything for the babies, sometimes it can be days without a baby in sight, then you start to see one by one come out. I'm sure there is enough biofilm for them to feed, plants substrate, glass and rocks.

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beanbag
22 hours ago, sdlTBfanUK said:

Are you still seeing the babies, there probably is enough biofilm at this stage so hopefully they will be fine? How many have you seen?

Simon

Maybe around 10 or so

19 hours ago, kms said:

I've had babies about 6 times, just treat the tanks as normal as you have been before, you can't do anything for the babies, sometimes it can be days without a baby in sight, then you start to see one by one come out. I'm sure there is enough biofilm for them to feed, plants substrate, glass and rocks.

I know that many people claim to have increased baby survival rate by dosing various baby foods or Bacter AE.  What has your survival rate been?

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sdlTBfanUK

I agree that there probably likely to have more survive with food but if you have 10 already (and there are probably many hiding) that is a good start and it is probably better to get half a dozen each batch (month) than over-run too quickly! You should be fine not using baby food at the moment with the number of babies you have!

I had extraordinary survival rates in the original 15L tank which I assume is because they all got some food being such a small tank. Within months of the 8 shrimps breeding I got about 150 babies - it was panic time to get a bigger tank set up!

Simon

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kms
1 hour ago, beanbag said:

Maybe around 10 or so

I know that many people claim to have increased baby survival rate by dosing various baby foods or Bacter AE.  What has your survival rate been?

At the time, those babies grown and had babies, those babies also had their babies, during that time, I did not add bacter AE, I never knew what it was, and I was only a beginner, @sdlTBfanUKhelped alot along with @jayc

oh, had average 20 babies for each mother shrimp.

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beanbag

Update:  One batch of babies is two weeks old and the other is 1 week.  The most I counted today is 20.  Only a few of the babies are grazing around but most of them are still stationary.

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sdlTBfanUK

Thats great news and you can assume there are some you didn't see that may be hiding somewhere. It is great when they come out more and you get to see them more!

Simon

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beanbag

One month update: I think I am down to about 14 babies now.  There aren't that many places to hide from view because I can look at the tank from both sides.  Some have grown a bit (6-7mm long) and are going around grazing, so maybe those will be ok.  Many of them are still tiny like 4 mm, which is only a little bit bigger than when first born.  Maybe they just grow up slow or aren't getting the right kind of nutrition.  Some are still stationary, which is kind of troubling.

The adult shrimp seem to be doing fine, so nothing is too far wrong, but something is still not quite right for the babies.  Some are grazing and also pooping, so there must be biofilm around?  But there are hardly any in the moss, and I thought (baby) shrimp are supposed to love moss because it is a good source of biofilm.  I suspect the tank does not have enough, or the "right kind", or biofilm since there doesn't seem to be a lot of growth on the walls, nor the HMF sponge filter.  (All the other aquariums I see in the pet stores have all kinds of algae and crap growing on the sponge filter,and shrimp gathered all over it. Whereas my HMF filter sponge looks clean and hardly any shrimp gather on it)  The nitrates always read zero - I think because the moss sucks it up right away and causes yellowing in some of the other plants.

As for feeding, I alternate between shrimp food pellets, mulberry pellet ,and Bacter AE, each day.  (Plus an occasional day of nothing)  The first two are mainly in hopes of keeping the adults happy so they don't go around eating up too much of the biofilm.  And I don't try to use powdered food so as to prevent water pollution.  But this is still more feeding than before there were babies, so maybe I should cut back again to prevent water pollution?

Water change schedule is 10-15% per week. 

 

 

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sdlTBfanUK

I am really pleased that your babies are doing well!

If I recall correctly(unlikely though!!!!!!!!) you previously asked how to stop getting overstocked, so as long as you are getting 'SOME' of the babies survive,  rather than all, that should help with that issue?

I rarely see shrimps spending time on my moss either, they spend more time on other surfaces. IF you want more babies you should use some powder/baby food, though if you have 14 babies already and don't want to get over-run then I would leave it alone, you must be doing it right, and messing with things can just cause a problem when there wasn't one to start with?

They will have more babies and eventually the babies will grow and have babies so just let it naturally happen that the colony grows! 

Simon

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beanbag

Yes, that was me and I don't want too many baby shrimps because I don't want to have to deal with selling or culling.  But on the same hand, it is kind of discouraging to have seen up to 20+ babies at one time, and then to watch that number slowly go down.

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Jay_Walker

I wouldn't stress too much about it. Even given ideal, spot-on conditions, no species (other than humans) is built to have even close to 100% survivability. Let's say for the sake of argument that your shrimp had 20 babies, and now you're down to 14 (unlikely because it's near impossible to count them all). That's still a 70% survival rate which is about 60% higher than in the wild! Speaking from experience, sometimes it is our natural instinct to want to control every variable of shrimp-keeping. But the ironic thing is that what keeps us coming back is the unpredictability of what we're going to get, and how it's going to go. It sounds like you're doing everything right that you can. The best piece of advice I got in regards to changing things in a tank is that as much as you want to change multiple variables at once, change one and give it time for the affects to ripple through the system before changing anything else. Easier said than done, I know 🙂 And yes, let's see pictures!

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beanbag

Thanks for the reply.  When I mentioned 20 shrimp, that was actual babies seen out of two batches, so there were probably 40 eggs initially. 

But anyway these last few days the number of babies has been decreasing about 1 per day, and maybe I know why.  I saw a baby shrimp laying on its side struggling and half dead.  It seems that it got at least its front shell off, but most of it was still stuck to its legs. I carefully took it out and used very thin fishing line (as soft sticks) to pry it off.  Don't know if any appendages were lost in this process, so maybe I should have left it alone.  Anyway, I put it into a mini quarantine tank, so fingers crossed if it will survive until tomorrow.  This guy was probably 3 weeks old, and probably had already molted twice or so.  There was another one like this a few days ago, and it got over-run by rhabdocoela, so it was a goner by then.

So anyway I assume there is a problem with molting (babies only, as the adults seem to handle it ok).  The GH value is 5, which should be about right.  The baby shrimp only get to eat biofilm and Bacter AE, so maybe they aren't getting enough calcium?

Yesterday I discovered that even the baby shrimp like boiled spinach leaves (should have calcium), so today I chopped one up into little pieces and spread it all over the tank.  (I am not worried about water pollution with leaves).  Maybe I can also take the Shrimp King Mineral pellet and crush it up into a powder and spread it all over the tank?  (The ingredients list, except for "insect proteins", looks like plants and minerals, so probably shouldn't cause water pollution either)

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sdlTBfanUK

As long as the babies keep coming regularly you will be ok and not worry too much about the odd death! I lost one of my newbies yesterday but I had only had them a week so I expect the odd death, and just hope they start breeding soon!!!!!!!!!! I think caridina shrimp have fewer babies than neocaridina?

Good luck breaking the shrimpking pellets up, I do that, but they are like rocks and even with my hammer I haven't got them to a powdered state ever? I prefer having smaller pieces spread around so they don't need to all fight to get to a piece!

I fed my newbies spinach (Organic) on saturday and they were a bit interested but not overly fussed! I assumed this meant there is no shortage of natural food/biofilm in there at the moment?

Hopefully you have some berried shrimp so you will get another batch of babies? 

Simon

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Jay_Walker

Organic spinach is my #1 most popular food for both babies and adults thus far. Oddly enough, cauliflower leaf is a close 2nd. Both, however, need to be blanched I have found in order to be immediately palatable, particularly to the smaller shrimp. I bring to a quick boil for 3-5 minutes, almost to the point of sogginess; seems to do the trick.

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beanbag

Hello again, and update:

It has been 6-7 weeks since the baby shrimps were born.  Ever since my last post, things were going ok.  Some other shrimp keeper advised me to keep the water changes down to 10% every 1-2 weeks.  I counted a maximum of 17 shrimp babies 3 days ago, so I don't think any were lost in those two weeks .  Two days ago, I put in a small amount (1/5th of a dose) of Dr Tim's Waste Away, one of those products that claims to have bacteria that eat away waste.  But then over the next two days, I've lost 3 or more babies suddenly.  I usually find them on their side barely moving, with nothing obviously wrong with the body or color, and the only slightly odd thing is that they have their swimmerettes sticking straight out instead of folded up like usual. Most of the adult shrimp are ok, many babies are actively grazing away, and some of the babies are very quiet (could also be pre or post molt).

Well, anyways, I  blame that bacterial product for now, because there isn't anything else that I did out of the ordinary.  The feeding schedule alternates between boiled spinach, mulberry pellet, shrimp food pellet, and Bacter AE.  Perhaps I've feed too many days in a row without a "rest day"? (ammonia, nitrite and nitrate still read zero)

Any ideas what could be wrong, and how to recover?

Edited by beanbag
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sdlTBfanUK

As with you I could only assume it was something to do with the stuff you added so I wouldn't use that again! If everything else, feeding etc, is the same I think you can safely assume it was something to do with what you added?

I think we get carried away sometimes and should let nature do its own thing without adding so much other stuff?

About 10% water change a week is the same as I do in my shrimp tank.

I hope you don't loose any more babies!

Simon

 

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kms

I do about 10% a week and I have  a few babies about 2 cm long.

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beanbag

Just an update to this.  Within two days after adding that "Dr Tim's Waste Away", I probably killed off 3-4 babies, but after that they have mostly been fine.  So I don't know whether that product had some "bad bacteria", or disrupted the ecological balance or what.  Oh well, I guess I won't use that any more.  I also started doing super slow water changes where I remove 10% of the water, but then add back partial amounts over the next few days.   I think this helps prevent triggering failed molts in the babies.

Edited by beanbag
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kms

I try not to put any meds with shrimp, many commercial med will kill shrimps, unless they are specific made for shrimps, I have 4 babies from my pinto, and about 14 babies from my CRS.

 

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