loveflying

Water Help!

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loveflying

Hi Everyone, I have been attempting to keep cherry shrimp in my planted tank for the passed few months without much success. Until recently, I have not checked the GH or KH of the water since I didn't have those test kits, but I finally bought and checked those parameters. Without further delay, here is some background on the tank in question. 

Tank size: 50 gallon cube w/ 15 gallon sump

Substrate: ADA Aqua Soil Amazonia

Fertilization: Running EI regime

Co2: I don't know the exact ppm but my drop checker turns light green but not yellow by the end of the photo period. 

Ammonia: 0

Nitrite: 0

Nitrate: less than 5ppm

PH: 6.2--when co2 is degassed...can't get a reading when the co2 is on because it's too low

KH: 1 drop gets my water to react with the API test 

GH: 2 drops to get my water to react with API

Water changes: weekly 50% 

Temperature: room temp which varies from  72-75 F

The tank in question has been set up for 10 months and has been pretty stable. I have had many spawns of dwarf pencilfish occur in the tank, and the fry from earlier batches are adult size now. Unfortunately, the cherry shrimp have not fared as well. I added 15 a couple months ago, and they all seemed to do well initially, but I started to get deaths after the 2nd week. Shrimp would one by one start to act lethargic and swim erratically. They seemed to lie prone before kicking up and moving before lying prone again. All shrimp displaying these symptoms later died, and I am down to my last 3 or 4 shrimp--it's hard to tell exactly because the tank has dense plant mass. 

My question regarding shrimp and next steps is two fold. Are my water parameters the cause of the shrimp fatalities? If they are, what are some steps I can take to help change that situation, and what shrimp are best suited to my tank conditions? Would tiger or crystal shrimp be appropriate given my low ph, kh and gh?

Thanks for any input. 

 

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jayc
41 minutes ago, loveflying said:

Are my water parameters the cause of the shrimp fatalities? If they are, what are some steps I can take to help change that situation, and what shrimp are best suited to my tank conditions? Would tiger or crystal shrimp be appropriate given my low ph, kh and gh?

The constant change in water parameters when you add CO2, fertilizers and large 50% water changes is likely to be the issue.

Can you move the cheery shrimps out into a low light tank with one low tech plants like mosses, and ferns?

Crystal shrimps might be a better choice in your tank given the low pH, but it's not a guarantee with CO2, fertilizers and the constant change in TDS and pH.

Tiger shrimps probably prefer higher GH and KH, so I wouldn't risk it.

 

Anyone else have any suggestions?

 

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loveflying

Thanks for the suggestions JayC. Unfortunately, I only have the one tank up and running, so moving the shrimp to another tank is not possible right now. 

Would my low GH be a problem for crystal shrimp?

Also, is my daily co2 injection and weekly water change the likely cause of death for my cherries? I have seen many tank setups on the plantedtank forum regarding high tech setups with cherries. I was wondering if there may be another reason why my cherries are doing so poorly in particular. Do you think trying another supplier for cherries would yield another result?

 

Thanks

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jayc
8 hours ago, loveflying said:

Would my low GH be a problem for crystal shrimp?

I don't think it would. A low GH indicates a low Calcium & Magnesium content in the water. Shrimps use this for growing their carapace (shells). However, Calcium can easily be rectified with diet. And the GH can be easily rectified by adding Ca & Mg with a remineralising mix like Salty Shrimp GH+ or similar.

 

8 hours ago, loveflying said:

Also, is my daily co2 injection and weekly water change the likely cause of death for my cherries?

Very possible. Reduce your EI ferts to a less frequent period. And reduce CO2 as much as you can.

Water changes for shrimps can be as low as 10% weekly.  The aim is to reduce fluctuations in water parameters. Everytime you add something to the water, it will change the parameters. 

 

8 hours ago, loveflying said:

I was wondering if there may be another reason why my cherries are doing so poorly in particular

Also very possible that there is another reason. But I can't identify another reason with the information at hand.

 

8 hours ago, loveflying said:

Do you think trying another supplier for cherries would yield another result?

Again, that's could be a factor in the issue. Your original shrimps might have been from very different water parameters. And the change might have been too severe. A different supplier, might have shrimps accustomed to your water parameters. Always check the suppliers water parameters. If they can't tell you, don't buy from them.

 

 

 

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loveflying

Thank you JayC for your detailed responses. I will try reducing my ei dosing by half, hopefully algae doesn't go crazy. I will also try to reduce my co2 to make my drop checker more solid green rather than lime green. 

At this point, if I still want to try adding in some shrimp, would you recommend trying another source of cherries closer to my water parameters or would you recommend trying for some CRS

Also, which water parameter should I be looking to match most closely in seeking out a supplier...GH, KH, or PH?

 

Thank you

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jayc

Local bred sources would be the best choice. 

All the parameters are important. But if you must pick one or two, it would be pH and TDS.

I know you don't have a TDS meter, but it's a very useful equipment to have. You can use it to test all your water, including the water you drink. Look into getting a TDS meter, it's fairly affordable now on ebay or Amazon.

 

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loveflying

I have looked at Amazon and as you said TDS meters are very affordable, so I ordered one. Regarding GH and KH, I am thinking of buying salty shrimp to raise my gh a bit. Do you think I should gh/KH booster or just GH

I have found a breeder who raises his shrimp in ph similar to my tank and who also has low kh (he also has shrimp in a fertilized tank with co2).

Thank you for your help

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jayc
4 hours ago, loveflying said:

Do you think I should gh/KH booster or just GH

Get GH / KH for cherry shrimp. 

And mix salty shrimp into your tank until you get about 180 TDS.

Edited by jayc

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