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Major shrimp deaths, feeling like giving them up :(

Nick potts

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Glad this thread has been bumped up.

I ending leaving the tank shrimpless until about 2 weeks ago when I spotted 2 lone blue dreams in my LFS, added and watched them for 2 weeks, they seemed to do just fine. A few days ago I added a further 10 shrimp, I have had 1 death from this batch which I am putting down to a casualty from moving/acclimatisation etc.

I will keep a close eye on these for the next few weeks.

I am considering an RO unit, even though my tap water is pretty good, TDS 70, KH1, GH1 <1 Nitrate, the PH is rather high at around 8.4 to 8.6, I then need to add remineraliser with further increases PH, so hopefully an RO unit will bring that down.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
TDS 70, KH1, GH1 <1 Nitrate, the PH is rather high at around 8.4 to 8.6,
The high pH is almost certainly because of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) injection. You can only get that combination of low dGH, dKH and TDS when you add a strong base (like NaOH) to fairly low solute water. NaOH will raise pH, when it disassociates into a Na+ and OH- ion, it is a <"strong base">, and pH will rise because you've added an OH- ion, but it doesn't add any buffering, this is added by <"weak bases such as "limestone" (CaCO3)">.
I then need to add remineraliser with further increase in pH
That is strange, any salts you add shouldn't raise pH any further, the CO2 ~ carbonate equilibrium has a pH value of about pH 8 at 400ppm of atmospheric CO2. You can only get a higher pH with greater addition of a stronger base.

In terms of Cherry Shrimps your water is still really soft, and I found that Cherry shrimps <"don't do well in very soft water">. You could add <"a calcium carbonate source">, or you could use a <"soluble carbonate"> (like KHCO3) and a soluble calcium source (like CaCl.6H2O) in your re-mineraliser.

cheers Darrel
 
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Nick potts

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Hi all,

The high pH is almost certainly because of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) injection. You can only get that combination of low dGH, dKH and TDS when you add a strong base (like NaOH) to fairly low solute water. NaOH will raise pH, when it disassociates into a Na+ and OH- ion, it is a <"strong base">, and pH will rise because you've added an OH- ion, but it doesn't add any buffering, this is added by <"weak bases such as "limestone" (CaCO3)">.

That is strange, any salts you add shouldn't raise pH any further, the CO2 ~ carbonate equilibrium has a pH value of about pH 8 at 400ppm of atmospheric CO2. You can only get a higher pH with greater addition of a stronger base.

In terms of Cherry Shrimps your water is still really soft, and I found that Cherry shrimps <"don't do well in very soft water">. You could add <"a calcium carbonate source">, or you could use a <"soluble carbonate"> (like KHCO3) and a soluble calcium source (like CaCl.6H2O) in your re-mineraliser.

cheers Darrel
Thanks Darrel.

In all honesty, the chemistry is all a bit lost on me :)

I know my water is too soft straight out of the tap, which is why I am adding the JBL aquadur, I aim for a KH of 5 and GH of 6. Could the PH rise be because I add an airstone to my water to mix it up?

I will mix up a new batch later and test both the tap and mix after adding the JBL

I still think an RO unit might be the way to go, just so I have more control.
 

Nick potts

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Hi all,

That is strange, any salts you add shouldn't raise pH any further, the CO2 ~ carbonate equilibrium has a pH value of about pH 8 at 400ppm of atmospheric CO2. You can only get a higher pH with greater addition of a stronger base.

cheers Darrel
You were absolutely right Darrel. Just tested params were

Tap water TDS 75, KH1, GH2, PH8.4

Water mixed to 200 TDS, KH6, GH7, PH 8.4. The TDS is higher than I would like so I may lower it to 150 and see where that gets me with the kg and gh.

I am going to leave the water to sit till this eve and will test it again.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
Could the PH rise be because I add an airstone to my water to mix it up?
Yes it could, oxygen is the base in OH- and you can potentially get pH values in the pH10 range in water that is <"super-saturated with oxygen">. Because the pH scale is a (base^10) log scale, pH10 is 100 (10^2) times more basic than pH8.
the chemistry is all a bit lost on me
I understand that, I'm <"not very good at chemistry"> and I had to get somebody to explain to me what buffering etc. actually meant in practice, before I could fit all the "moving bits" together.
the JBL aquadur
I think that is OK, it isn't a product I've ever used, but other than being expensive (@Zeus. ) it should work. Because of the limited solubility of the compounds of group 2 metals, (that form the Ca++ &, Mg++ ions that we measure as dGH) I'd guess that the salts it contains are calcium chloride (CaCl2.6H2O) and potassium (bi)carbonate (K2CO3/KHCO3).

I'd definitely add some dead leaves (Terminalia catappa etc.) to your tank, the shrimps will eat them, but the real advantage is that the tannins & humic substances should chelate any heavy metals your soft water picked up. The idea of the NaOH addition is that the rise in pH will precipitate out any heavy metals as insoluble hydroxides etc. but if the alkalinity falls then the pH will drop as well and any heavy metal ions may go back into solution.

cheers Darrel
 

Zeus.

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I think that is OK, it isn't a product I've ever used, but other than being expensive (@Zeus. ) it should work. Because of the limited solubility of the compounds of group 2 metals, (that form the Ca++ &, Mg++ ions that we measure as dGH) I'd guess that the salts it contains are calcium chloride (CaCl2.6H2O) and potassium (bi)carbonate (K2CO3/KHCO3).
Doing a perfect clone is doable but little tricky as they have suppield the %(W/W) for cations and Ions
1605812409466.png

Which is typical sales trick to supply the data in a format your not use to. Would need to workout the mass of element used for various salt combos and compare the mass for cations and ions so used the quicker route
1605812484123.png

So made quick Bespoke remineralizer by trail and error and..
1605812653013.png

1605812771937.png

Could of spent more time on it and got it too 18.75grams, so £0.09p a dose compared to £0.60p per dose.
Or a @ceg4048 dose would be teaspoon of epsom salts, teaspoon of Calcium Chloride and two teaspoons of Bicarb and call it right ;)
 

Nick potts

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Doing a perfect clone is doable but little tricky as they have suppield the %(W/W) for cations and Ions
View attachment 156616
Which is typical sales trick to supply the data in a format your not use to. Would need to workout the mass of element used for various salt combos and compare the mass for cations and ions so used the quicker route
View attachment 156617
So made quick Bespoke remineralizer by trail and error and..
View attachment 156618
View attachment 156619
Could of spent more time on it and got it too 18.75grams, so £0.09p a dose compared to £0.60p per dose.
Or a @ceg4048 dose would be teaspoon of epsom salts, teaspoon of Calcium Chloride and two teaspoons of Bicarb and call it right ;)
Thank you for taking the time @Zeus.

For the amount I use, less than half a teaspoon, I don't mind buying a premade mix.
 

Nick potts

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Well, I was going to update the thread with good news, but found 2 dead shrimp this evening at WC time :(

These new shrimp have been in the tank around 5-6 weeks.

They all seemed to be doing well, eating, active etc. I have changed the way I do things, most notably I now do drip water changes. I haven't added any new stock, the only thing that I have added is a feeding tube and tray.

Constant death is starting to wear thin, especially for an animal that is supposed to be easy to keep. I should point out I have had the same pair of Amano shrimp in the tank for months and they are perfectly fine,
 

jameson_uk

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Well, I was going to update the thread with good news, but found 2 dead shrimp this evening at WC time :(

These new shrimp have been in the tank around 5-6 weeks.

They all seemed to be doing well, eating, active etc. I have changed the way I do things, most notably I now do drip water changes. I haven't added any new stock, the only thing that I have added is a feeding tube and tray.

Constant death is starting to wear thin, especially for an animal that is supposed to be easy to keep. I should point out I have had the same pair of Amano shrimp in the tank for months and they are perfectly fine,
Amanos are bullet proof and don't seem to mind fluctuating conditions.

My experience is that shrimps struggle with changing parameters and the first generation you add to the tank still want the parameters they were bred in. T
The next generations (Have you seen any babies? ) seem to do better so if you see babies then I wouldn't be totally concerned. Remind me what their diet is?
 

Nick potts

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Amanos are bullet proof and don't seem to mind fluctuating conditions.

My experience is that shrimps struggle with changing parameters and the first generation you add to the tank still want the parameters they were bred in. T
The next generations (Have you seen any babies? ) seem to do better so if you see babies then I wouldn't be totally concerned. Remind me what their diet is?
Thanks mate. Yeah the amanos do seem bomb proof.

I have not seen any babies or berried females.

Food is a mixture including hikari shrimp pellets, marks shrimp tanks complete range, bacter ae, occasional veggies and a mix of different leaf litter. I don't feed them directly very often as the leaf litter and biofilm would supply most foods.
 

Nick potts

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Well, finally after all the issues i seem to be getting some results.

No deaths for a while now and finally we have berried shrimp :D, now I finally remember what I really enjoy about the hobby.

I doubt it will help anyone, but in case it does, some of the changes I made to the shrimp tanks.

Added a lot more botanicals, jackfruit and Indian almond leaves, alder cones, bogwood and lots more mosses, the water is not to my liking colour wise, but it is a compromise I will live with for now.

Bi-weekly 2 litre water changes, the water is dripped back in at around 3 drips per second. I wasn't going to continue this but it is so simple that I have, I just place a small container with airline tap stuck through the bottom to the top of the tank and forget about it.

RO water remineralised to 180 TDS, another that I am not sure made all that much difference, my tap is 70ppm TDS , but now I have control of the water and can use it if I try bee shrimp.

Daily feeding of general food, this rotates between a few brands, then every other day I add bacter ae in tiny amounts, this I feel was a key one. I know a lot of people say don't feed daily or at all, but my shrimp and snails eat all that is put in there.
 

Big G

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Fingers crossed, it sounds more promising Nick.

I saw that drip method on MST recently. Makes sense. Moving to smaller WC’s myself in my more established tank.
Would Purigen remove the tannics but leave humics? Mark seems to pre-soak the botanicals to remove tannins but still believes they have benefits. Think he has Purigen in his Pat Minis/HOB’s etc. I really don’t know.

Upping my game too with a general thrust towards greater continuity so watching your thread with interest. Blues have temporarily stopped breeding. I’m convinced a couple of females are one molt away from breeding but it’s hard to see saddles in some of them so could be just wishful thinking.

I’ve put the odd combination of pollen, montmorillionite and Bacter ae/ Marks biomix in tiny quantities in a test tube solution for distribution with the filter off with outflow covered for a few minutes to let much of the suspension get deeper into the tank then filter back on to distribute the rest. Nothing for a few days then if they dive on a piece of blanched courgette or kale they can have it until they lose interest or its just spine. If not, after an hour or two it gets whipped out. Repeat. Can’t say if that’s the way but so far no deaths. I saw a strange wiggling thing the other day when I forget and left something in over night but not since. Also a few locally collected dry and blanched Mulberry leaves get left in (small fractions). I keep an eye on that. Back up biofilm/food so to speak. If it gets eaten slowly- good. If they jump on it biofilm must be more scarce. Tiny measure of Bacter etc and so on.
Odd bit of Sirakura Ebi Dami or another prepared product once a week as more of a colony head counter than anything. They usually go nuts for it if hungry.

All the best mate

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Nick potts

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Fingers crossed, it sounds more promising Nick.

I saw that drip method on MST recently. Makes sense. Moving to smaller WC’s myself in my more established tank.
Would Purigen remove the tannics but leave humics? Mark seems to pre-soak the botanicals to remove tannins but still believes they have benefits. Think he has Purigen in his Pat Minis/HOB’s etc. I really don’t know.

Upping my game too with a general thrust towards greater continuity so watching your thread with interest. Blues have temporarily stopped breeding. I’m convinced a couple of females are one molt away from breeding but it’s hard to see saddles in some of them so could be just wishful thinking.

I’ve put the odd combination of pollen, montmorillionite and Bacter ae/ Marks biomix in tiny quantities in a test tube solution for distribution with the filter off with outflow covered for a few minutes to let much of the suspension get deeper into the tank then filter back on to distribute the rest. Nothing for a few days then if they dive on a piece of blanched courgette or kale they can have it until they lose interest or its just spine. If not, after an hour or two it gets whipped out. Repeat. Can’t say if that’s the way but so far no deaths. I saw a strange wiggling thing the other day when I forget and left something in over night but not since. Also a few locally collected dry and blanched Mulberry leaves get left in (small fractions). I keep an eye on that. Back up biofilm/food so to speak. If it gets eaten slowly- good. If they jump on it biofilm must be more scarce. Tiny measure of Bacter etc and so on.
Odd bit of Sirakura Ebi Dami or another prepared product once a week as more of a colony head counter than anything. They usually go nuts for it if hungry.

All the best mate

Bg
Thanks Bg

The small size WC and drip method were from Marks routine, I have also seen a lot of successful breeders do similar, plus it is rather simple to do which is a bonus.

Your right on the purigen, Mark does use it in his tanks, and it may be something to consider if the tannins really start to bother me, but at the moment I am just happy the tank and shrimps seem to be doing well.

I hear good things about the Sirakura foods, so will have to pick some up when I start running low. The bacter ae I just chuck into the bubbles from the sponge filters which seems to work well. The other foods I put in a dish and it is usually gone within the hour, mostly because the amano's pinch it, so I may move them to another tank to help clean that one :)

Another thing I added which I believe helped is snails, I know many don't like them but they are great for cleaning up any left over foods etc, which means I can feed more and not worry so much.
 

Big G

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Agree. Snails were a game changer for me. I was not keen originally but have played it fairly safe with Nerites. Wouldn't be without them now. Entertaining to watch, great on the Anubias and glass, no hassle, most amazing 'shut down ' flap when they scare themselves by maybe falling off a leaf tip etc.

I'll not be the first to name them Scutter, Gary, Patricia (after it was clear the relationship with Gary was more than platonic), Squidward, Plankton and ,of course, Krabbs. Nor the last.

All small horned Zebras apart from Scutter who's a bigger Tiger.

All the best

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Big G

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Hope this is an omen for you going forward Nick as we’re reading from the same hymn sheet on much of this;

....my first berried female, since I changed things up, appeared at feeding time - like it was no biggie last night. :oops:

For the record I dialled up more consistent temperatures at a slightly higher target range around 72-73f with the heater much more in the pump return’s flow path rather than heating its own static surroundings, couple of small Catappa leaves, smaller WC’s, couple of new Alder cones , a Mulberry leaf or two, fresh blanched veg, upping my filtration media rinsing cycle, a thicker, more grown in plant mass, more consistent mini feeds based on reactions rather than dogma and a regular tiny background powder/suspension feed of Bacter AE/ a biomass builder, pollen and (montmorillionite at WC.)

Could be one of those, all of them or none of ‘em and just some kind of internal, diurnal trigger in the colony. She may not carry to birth and it might be a one off but we’ll see. I’m chuffed either way.

All the best,
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Nick potts

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Hope this is an omen for you going forward Nick as we’re reading from the same hymn sheet on much of this;

....my first berried female, since I changed things up, appeared at feeding time - like it was no biggie last night. :oops:

For the record I dialled up more consistent temperatures at a slightly higher target range around 72-73f with the heater much more in the pump return’s flow path rather than heating its own static surroundings, couple of small Catappa leaves, smaller WC’s, couple of new Alder cones , a Mulberry leaf or two, fresh blanched veg, upping my filtration media rinsing cycle, a thicker, more grown in plant mass, more consistent mini feeds based on reactions rather than dogma and a regular tiny background powder/suspension feed of Bacter AE/ a biomass builder, pollen and (montmorillionite at WC.)

Could be one of those, all of them or none of ‘em and just some kind of internal, diurnal trigger in the colony. She may not carry to birth and it might be a one off but we’ll see. I’m chuffed either way.

All the best,
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Well after spotting the berried shrimp, it has either dropped the eggs or less likely they have hatched (I don't think they were incubated long enough and not spotted any babies).

My tanks are all run at room temp, which is pretty stable at 20-21c.
 

rebel

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Hi Nick,

I don't think you have isolated the cause for the deaths. Good to hear maybe they have slowed down.

There is something seriously amiss though because I have kept cherries in 0-30 degrees, 0 to very hard water, low to very high CO2, 60% water changes with temp fluctuations of 5 degrees. Once I left some in a bucket in my shed which goes down to -2 during winter with no filter etc and they still survived and even bred a little. The very same shrimp dropped like flies when I put them in a Fluval edge I bought second hand. I could never keep ANY fish or shrimp in that tank no matter how hard I tried for 3 years. I have never been happier to find a tank leaking one day! I never reused that filter.
 

Big G

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Hi Nick,

I don't think you have isolated the cause for the deaths. Good to hear maybe they have slowed down.

There is something seriously amiss though because I have kept cherries in 0-30 degrees, 0 to very hard water, low to very high CO2, 60% water changes with temp fluctuations of 5 degrees. Once I left some in a bucket in my shed which goes down to -2 during winter with no filter etc and they still survived and even bred a little. The very same shrimp dropped like flies when I put them in a Fluval edge I bought second hand. I could never keep ANY fish or shrimp in that tank no matter how hard I tried for 3 years. I have never been happier to find a tank leaking one day! I never reused that filter.
Fair points Rebel.

If the deaths continue to mount up then there’s something else, more fundamental amiss.

Curious to know if you ever got to the bottom of the Fluval Edge issue? (apologies to Nick for the tangent)

I could hazard a few guesses being a Speccy myself but don’t want to pre-suppose.

all the best
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rebel

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Curious to know if you ever got to the bottom of the Fluval Edge issue?
Never. While I can repair that tank potentially I refuse to sell it to another as I thought it was either the tank or the filter.

One possibility was stability due to the tank being small but I had those shrimp in a bucket in a shed for goodness sake!

Sometimes you have to just move on. I have hundreds of shrimp in my display tank which has major fluctutations on all sorts of parameters due to fast 60% water changes.
 

Big G

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That's very interesting.
I seem to remember a lot of people having issues of various sorts when it was quite a gateway tank for some.

They are/were widely available, novel and, at least on the face of it, a convenient , competitively priced all-in-one.

Perhaps a bit of form over function. Neos are pretty robust, as you say, but there are limits.

If someone is having to battle the constraints of the design on top of get to grip with the funtamentals it's a big ask.

If you really don't want it maybe we can talk turkey sometime? Think I could try it strictly as a plant scape for anubias and java. A few snails if I can hold it steady. Might be a nice little night light in the right spot.

Sorry for the digression.

All the best

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