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CalicoKitties
20th Aug 2014, 12:29 PM
Okay, I need help figuring this out. I set up a 15 gallon tank on July 1st, and I successfully cycled the tank (fishless cycle using pure ammonia) by the end of the month. I purchased red cherry shrimp (I received about 20, and one was berried) and added them to the tank after acclimating them using the method mentioned on plas.com. I added them on August 1st. They all seemed to do fine, and the berried shrimp's eggs hatched the next day (although I can never find more than 3 shrimplets, so I don't know if they all survived). Anyways, I found a dead shrimp today, and I suspect that more have died because I can never find more than 13-15 shrimp no matter how hard I look. The dead shrimp was a male. I honestly have no idea why he died.

I've been feeding them daily, a diet of veggie flakes (omega one), fish flakes (omega one), hikari crab cuisine, and algae wafers (hikari). I feed them in this order: algae wafer, veggie flakes, algae wafer, fish flakes, algae wafer, HCC, and repeat. (I don't feed them a whole algae wafer, of course, just a small bit of it.) I think I've been feeding them enough.. The food isn't always gone within 2 hours, but I usually leave whatever's left for the snails to finish up (unless there's a ton left over).

The water parameters are..
pH: 8.3
gH: 6
kH: 11
Ammonia: 0
Nitrites: 0
Nitrates: 0-5

The parameters have been steady. I add seachem equilibrium to my water because the gH is zero from the sink. I don't alter anything else, though. I've only done one water change since I added the shrimp since the nitrates are staying close to zero (I suspect that's because of the plants) and everything else is fine.

In the tank, I have: Najas grass (and lots of it!), Java moss, 5 moss balls, 2 pieces of cholla wood, 2 small terracotta pots, black aquarium gravel, 2 sponge filters (one on each side, and each filter has 2 sponges), a couple of pieces of an indian almond leaf, a small chunk of cuttlebone, and a heater. I keep the temperature at 76F. There are also pond snails and ramshorn snails in the tank, and the snails are all doing fine.

So.. Anybody have any idea why it died? Am I doing something wrong? Like I said, I've only found one dead shrimp, but more may have died simply without me knowing about it. There was already a shrimp eating the dead one that I found (I removed it ASAP). The shrimp that I see out and about seem to be fine; most of the females are saddled, but I haven't seen any berried ones yet. I see a shrimplet every now-and-then, and when I do, they look fine. Quite a few of the shrimp have already molted since I put them into the tank.

Any advice is greatly appreciated!

hyoushoku
20th Aug 2014, 09:59 PM
Hi,

It is normal for new shrimps to die within the first month, especially after they moult. It may not got to do with your tank.

However, I do spot a few problem with your setup/maintenance:

1. If your tap water has zero GH, in nature water it is almost impossible to have pH 8.3 and 11 dKH. Unless, your tap has been filtered with water softener resin or your water source run through rich soda ash and potash ash area (pretty unlikely, or else it may not be good for health in long term)
2. Seachem Equilibrium is to be used with RO water and not tap water. If you add dosage of 6 dGH, you will have about very large quantity of potassium and sulphate added into your tap water, which already have certain amount of potassium and sulphate. Both potassium and sulphate are relatively safe at high level but with these minerals in both equilibrium and tap added together, I'm not sure how high it will go. If I don't remember wrongly, if you at 6dGH of Equilibrium, it is about 50ppm of potassium.

Are you able to find out more about your tap water parameters, especially from municipal water quality report? Do you have water softener, filter or those special device that will make water alkaline (those claimed that will make your health better) installed in your home?

CalicoKitties
23rd Aug 2014, 06:24 AM
I apologize for the late response; I didn't see it until now.

Anyways, thank you kindly for your input! :) I'm not sure why the gH of our water is so low.. I'll ask my parents about it and get back to you on that.

I know that Equilibrium is supposed to be used with RO/distilled water, but I couldn't seem to find a better way to give the water a higher gH level.. I didn't even think of the potassium/sulphate levels getting too high. Any recommendations on what to use instead of Equilibrium??

hyoushoku
23rd Aug 2014, 12:05 PM
Do you know what are easily available for you? If you provide a list and I can recommend.

CalicoKitties
23rd Aug 2014, 12:22 PM
I would give you a list, but I don't know what to use to raise the gH.. Sorry! I'm sure I can find whatever you recommend; I can always order it online if I can't find it. :p

hyoushoku
23rd Aug 2014, 01:11 PM
Below are a few common ones:

1. Seachem Replenish (Note that the instruction is meq/L, which is 1 meq/L = 2.8 dGH)
2. SaltyShrimp GH+
3. Shirakura Mineral Ca+
4. Mosura Mineral +

One problem with the above is that they are mostly chloride-based salts. If your tap water already have a lot of chloride, then it will be a problem. Most salts are designed for RO water and not really tap water, especially you are trying to replenish from 0 to 6dGH that will add almost 30 to 50ppm of chloride.

You should find out why your tap water is zero GH first. What test kit are you using? Is it expired or spoilt?

CalicoKitties
24th Aug 2014, 01:20 AM
Thank you very much! I appreciate it; I'll look into it.

I'm using the API liquid test kit, and no, it's not expired or anything.

hyoushoku
24th Aug 2014, 02:47 AM
The testkit solution color, before you drip into the water, what color is it? Is it same as after you drip into the water or it is totally different?

CalicoKitties
24th Aug 2014, 05:46 PM
It's a different color before I drop it in (until I add enough drops and it goes to the color that shows the level of gH). Same goes for the kH test.

Also, I asked my dad about the water, and he said he wasn't sure why the gH is so low. He said it's just the city water and that we don't run it through a softener or anything.. So, idk. I'll try to find out more about it later, but I'm away from home for the week, so can't really look further into that atm.

hyoushoku
24th Aug 2014, 06:37 PM
Sounds like the test kit is working.