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revolutionhope

Seachem equilibrium

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revolutionhope

Hey all im hoping for a quick answer, ill try to be brief but ill have to give some background information first! I believe I need to change out some water asap to remove toxins and i need to drop my TDS at the same time.

I wanted to get salty shrimp gh/kh+ and use it with rainwater. (Rainwater from my grandmas tank has tds of 30 or so - is it likely to be safe? She said she had the bladder changed over this year and shes been drinking the stuff all her life and is now a fairly spritely 93 years old so its gotta be safe right?? LOL) unfortunately salty shrimp is not in stock at the techden. I can't find it locally and in any case I dont want to wait for shipping id like to start gradually fixing the tank parameters as of today.

My new sunsets and ycs from bluebolts are struggling a bit. The berried ycs is barely carrying half a dozen babies and ive even had a few sunsets die although theres been some breeding success with them. So im putting this down to tds being too high (above 300) and a build up of pollutants from me just topping up evaporated water for the last few weeks since moving house. Ps my blue and rcs are very happy and dont seem to care at all.

Firstly - is there another skf spnsor who sells saltyshrimp gh/kh+ ?

Secondly - is this rainwater safe do you think? Ive used it in the past but only for about 20-30% of total tank water volume. Ive mainly relied on a friends spring water but this has TDS of 150-200 and i need to reduce TDS to a more suitable level for the sensitive cherries.

Thirdly - can I get away with using a small amount of seachem equilibrium with seachem alkaline buffer in the rainwater until I can get my hands on saltyshrimp and hopefully get an RO sometime in future if/when I can afford it!

I thought if i could add the seachem products enough to bring tds of the R/W up to say 100ish and also get ph stable at 7.5 then it should do the job at least as a temporary measure? The RW pH is around 6 or so.

any of your experienced opinions would be a big big help!

Love n peace

Will

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jayc

Firstly - is there another skf spnsor who sells saltyshrimp gh/kh+ ?

Secondly - is this rainwater safe do you think? Ive used it in the past but only for about 20-30% of total tank water volume. Ive mainly relied on a friends spring water but this has TDS of 150-200 and i need to reduce TDS to a more suitable level for the sensitive cherries.

Thirdly - can I get away with using a small amount of seachem equilibrium with seachem alkaline buffer in the rainwater until I can get my hands on saltyshrimp and hopefully get an RO sometime in future if/when I can afford it!

Will,

1) Boss Aquaria and Newbreed Aquatics sell Salty Shrimp products.

2) Rainwater itself is safe to use. No doubt about it. But how & what we store it in can sometimes leech "stuff" into the water. Dirt, bird poo, etc on the roof will be collected when it rains, contributing to the TDS reading, even nitrates. Test it is my advice. Check the storage container - is it plastic or metal. Is the roof collection area roof tiles or metal roof? Any signs of rust? Leaf litter stuck in the gutters will contribute to nitrates, as will bird poo. Or bat poo, which is particularly nasty.

Rain water itself after the first few minutes of rain should have a low TDS. The rain water in my area, Inner west Sydney, is less than 10 TDS. Your rainwater is 30. What is in the extra 20 TDS?

3) Seachem equilibrium is ok as a temporary fix. Equilibrium doesn't have as much Calcium as Salty shrimp, just so you know. But it's essentially the same ingredients, but with different amounts of each.

Edited by jayc

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revolutionhope

Tnx for advice jayc your a champ! I do wonder about the extra 20 worth of tds. Previously when I got her RW lste last year the TDS was 17 or 18. Roof is metal, tank is plastic lined with new bladder. She keeps trees away from roof so shouldnt be too much bird poo. And no bats in area. What COULD be making up the rest of the tds then in your opinion? I dont think nitrates are particularly measurable with API testkit but il double check.

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revolutionhope

Just found out that my fav LFS sells RO water as well as sells bossaquaria shrimp mineral :-) gonna go with that until I can afford to get a machine.

Does anyone have experience with dupla as a brand of RO machine?

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Disciple

I bought and currently use a RO unit recommended by a lot of members from a place called Filter Systems Australia. They have a website and are on Ebay.

 

They have all sorts of units and are very well priced. Their customer service is great too. I recommend you look them up on google and give them a call. They will help find you the correct RO unit.

Edited by Disciple

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jayc

Tnx for advice jayc your a champ! I do wonder about the extra 20 worth of tds. Previously when I got her RW lste last year the TDS was 17 or 18. Roof is metal, tank is plastic lined with new bladder. She keeps trees away from roof so shouldnt be too much bird poo. And no bats in area. What COULD be making up the rest of the tds then in your opinion? I dont think nitrates are particularly measurable with API testkit but il double check.

 

The 20 TDS is probably the dirt and dust sitting on the roof in the dry days. Then when it rains, the dust & dirt get washed into the collection system.

Does the RW system have a "first flush" gadget, where it drains away the first few litres of rain where it's the dirtiest?

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revolutionhope

Ok! Her RW system is actually buried in the ground and a tap at the top pumps the water up. Im not sure if it uses any filter or first flush system of any kind ? In any case I have got a hold of some RO water a pack of bossaquaria shrimp mineral and some aquasonic kh tablets. could you spare your expert advice as to what would be the best process to prepare this? I have a container with an otto powerhead I typically use to mix and aerate the water before I add it. I do have a tds meter and also the api kh, gh and calcium testkits.

I never thought I would end up going down this route. Id always been so happy with my springwater (and a bit more recently) rainwater but clearly rcs, guppies and corys breed much more readily than these other neo varieties!!

Tnx for your help so far jayc. And disciple too - will check them out when we can afford it! (And minister of finance agrees that we need it !! ;-) )

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jayc

How many Litres is your tank?

And what are you using for remineralising the RO water again? Is it still Seachem equilibrium?

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revolutionhope

Boss aquaria shrimp mineral. And have a few aquasonic kh tablers the lfs owner gave me.. tanks are 55 Litres ish?

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revolutionhope

Actually. Its boss aquaria mineral powder. I hope it will do the job ?

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revolutionhope

I waa looking for salty shrimp gh/kh + but ended up with mineral powder from boss aquaria instead. In hindsight now I think perhaps its not the right product? My googling can't reveal the answer for me lol

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revolutionhope

Pretty sure its not what I need heh but it may be good to use in any case. Or I may keep it til I feel ready to tackle beeshrimp or something else more difficult than cherries! *off to get epsom salts and gypsum etc as per jayc's genius diy remineralisation thread!!* :-D

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jayc

Mineral powder isnt the product you need here. A good product to have itself. But not to remineralise RO or rainwater. Use it to add minerals for the shrimp.

I wouldnt use those kh tablets ... yet. Not unless you need to fix your kh.

Ahh you found my thread. Aquotix sells everything you need.

Once you have it, best way would be to adjust the TDS at every water change. 10% water change with new water that has been adjusted to 140 TDS.

This will minimize the stress to the shrimp.

Edited by jayc

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Anaeflurane

If you are in Adelaide head to Aggies Aquariums. They have SaltyShrimp products in stock currently. They are starting to build up a nice amount of shrimp products now.

Hope that helps!

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revolutionhope

Thanks! That will be really helpful. I wanted to make jayc's diy mix but it will take a while to organise so that will be a big help in the short term!

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revolutionhope

Hoping to get some more advice guys if I may - the pH in all my cherry tanks is around 7.5 and the TDS varies from tank to tank between 220 - 330. Ive got some RO water from LFS, a few KH+ tabs as well as some shrimp mineral powder. I added and mixed in some shrimp mineral powder to the RO water but it does virtually nothing to the TDS! I added RO water equiv of 5% of the volume of the tanks last night. The tanks are all half empty at the moment. Im wondering though whether people think I would be best of adjusting the pH or hardness of the RO water to closer match what is in the tank before adding it? I do have kh gh and calcium testkits I could use if it would be very useful for me to test those values then I could hopefully try to find the time to do so tonight.

My rcs, blue velvets and blue gene red rili shrimp are bonking away, seems they couldn't care less about the conditions.. but sunset and ycs have been struggling. There has been a few deaths and although some are berried they have been dropping some or all eggs :-(

Jayc, kizshrimp and others recently here (plus some earlier stickies in water parameters) have helped me learn a lot more than I knew before about shrimpkeeping but in alk honesty I still haven't quite got my head around things such as kh and ph and their relationship so basically im still nervous about how to proceed from here. I want to try to achieve good conditions this time and then keep it that way! If doing the kh gh and calcium testkits is recommended then I will manage to do so somehow its just tricky due to housedad obligations!

Love n peace

Will

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kizshrimp

Hi again Will. The mineral powder is probably a clay called calcium bentonite and isn't intended to affect the hardness. It's a "polishing" agent really. You want a conditioning salt like Equilibrium or Salty Shrimp GH+ if you want to raise GH and TDS. 

 

I know you know some of this already, but hopefully I can help clarify it for you. The pH of pure water is 7.0, neutral. Carbonates (KH) added to it will raise the pH. Acids produced by the living organisms in the tank or otherwise added will reduce the pH. There's a balancing act in getting the KH value to the correct level to offset the background acid production and result in the desired pH for the system. This varies due to stocking and feeding rates and water change regimes. That's why there's no clear explanation of "how much KH" available. Does that make sense? 

 

I'm not exactly clear on your other questions, if any. You do want to check your GH and Calcium levels - the simple answer to the ratios (thanks Squiggle!) is that you want about 5ppm Calcium per dGH.

Remembering that 1dGH is about 18ppm, you don't want your TDS to be too much higher than the combined totals of you GH and KH values - they should contribute I suppose about 75% or more of the TDS. The rest of the dissolved solids you're measuring are basically unwanted pollutants. Does that make sense? 

 

Armed with that info, hopefully you quickly notice a problem with your Sunkist and Yellow tanks. I say hopefully because then you can fix it easily! Ask more if you need to. 

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revolutionhope

Thanks a lot kiz much appreciated that definitely does help refresh and clarify kh and ph for me!

So I can get a clear evaluation of the situation im trying to test more detail of my tanks if my daughter will let me!

One other thing just to make sure im not confused (which I probably am confused lol)

Am i right in thinking that tds and gh are ways of measuring the same thing ?

Thanks again!

Will

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kizshrimp

Am i right in thinking that tds and gh are ways of measuring the same thing ?

 

 

They are not. The GH is essentially just the Ca and MG content of the water, while TDS includes all the dissolved solids. So the TDS reading includes your GH level, KH level, plus more. Hopefully the final paragraph of my last reply makes more sense now: 

"Remembering that 1dGH is about 18ppm, you don't want your TDS to be too much higher than the combined totals of you GH and KH values - they should contribute I suppose about 75% or more of the TDS. The rest of the dissolved solids you're measuring are basically unwanted pollutants."

To be more accurate, the GH does include a couple of other mineral levels other than Ca and MG (like iron), but they are in such low amounts that their contribution to the GH value is negligible. And some of the excess TDS is not just "unwanted pollutants" - there's humic and fulvic acids, potassium, trace elements etc. Hopefully only a low level of nitrate as well. 

 

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revolutionhope

Awesome ok think I finally got it now woohoo. I typed up a very lame spreadsheet with details of tank parameters im filling in the values now and will have a clear picture of whats going on. When I get all the info id love it if u andor jayc or someone else here who knows what theyre doing can review for me if u can spare the time.

Thanks again ! I'll be back lol

Love n peace

Will

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revolutionhope

i guess ive hit a snag trying to use these API test kits..

 

my calcium level seems to exceed the GH level. i must be doing this wrong? maybe im not doing GH until it gets green enough? or im trying to make the calcium test result become too much of a dark blue colour? oh well my daughter has ran out of patience with me. i got a lot of results just not sure how accurate they are lol.

 

one thing that seems clear ( assuming im doing these  GH and KH correctly ! - big assumption LOL) is that these values combined together constitute an average of 2/3 -> 3/4 of my total TDS as measured by TDS meter which must mean theres a lot of other things hanging around that there shouldnt be im thinking?

 

hmm wish these colours for API testkits were easier to match accurately! if thers a better brand anyone can recommend for testkits i may have to get different ones because im struggling to tell if im geting the correct result with these.

 

anyway i think im going to keep adding 5% tankvolume of RO water every couple days as per jayc's suggestion but i do wish i could be clearer on what exactly is in my tanks and what exactly i should add...

 

still it has been a significant breakthrough for me these last couple of days with my understanding of what WP actually are :) many many thanks kiz and jayc!

 

love n peace

 

will

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revolutionhope

Joy :-)

Just thought id follow up and share some good news. I seem to have my situation under control. Three things have changed so im nit sure which is most responsible - one is the addition of a small amount of RO water with a little epsom salts for magnesium and some calcium carbonate to raise pH to same level as tank ~7.5.

The other is the addition of rhe shrimp mineral powder?

Another factor could be that I fed some zucchini yesterday and previously I had been lazily using algae wafers and crab cuisine!

Im not sure what is the reason but my sunsets and ycs are now behaving like healthy active shrimp again. Fresh molts are appearing and their appetite is dramatically improved.

Anyway thankyou kiz and jayc youve both been very bery helpful in understanding the water parameters and deciding how to take action. I have some ro water from the lfs which will last a few weeks and then I will be looking at getting a system from filter systems Australia. Ive already spoken with them and they have been quite helpful!

Ive also ordered the ingredients for jayc's diy remineralisation mix so I will be able to mix up something better than just kh tablets and epsom salts :-)

One question - someone suggested epsom salts act as a laxative for fish; has anyone heard/know about this?

Love n peace

Willpost-1275-14277109113178_thumb.jpg

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jayc

One question - someone suggested epsom salts act as a laxative for fish; has anyone heard/know about this?

Well done. Glad we could be of assistance.

Magnesium sulfate or epsom salts is a mild laxative, but only if you deliberately increase the dosage for bloat treatment. Keep to the correct ratio like my diy mix and it won't be a problem.

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kizshrimp

Glad you've got it under control Will. Re the tests, the first colour change is the end point. You don't keep adding drops to get a clear green (in the case of API GH) colour. If you're using API Calcium make sure you follow the instructions on Blue Bolts thread and/or Aquotix GH page for higher resolution tests. Be aware that at the low CA levels in our shrimp tanks that the pink start colour is barely perceptible (looks clear) and without good light and a clean white background you'll easily miss the change to an equally imperceptible blue. 

 

Cichlids with bloat, you can usually get them to eat the epsom salts so not affect the water quality too much. And it usually doesn't work as a treatment because the bloat tends to be bacterial or protozoal. 

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