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Old 09-25-2017, 08:31 PM   #1
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Red crystal shrimp dying

So I just bought 4 red crystal shrimp 6 days ago and acclimated them over 1 hr in my 29g freshwater tank. I have lots of plants and 4 cory cats. There are plenty of hiding spaces in plants, under rocks and driftwood. This afternoon I got home from work and found one of them on its side, pale, and not moving. I immediately took it out of the tank. I looked at the other 3 and they were all moving around. About 6 hours later I was watching them and found one at the top of the tank on the glass and all of a sudden dropped and floated down, landing in its back. It was not moving and also looked slightly pale. I nudged it a little bit and still didn't move. I took it out and it didn't appear to have any spots or wounds of any sort. I checked my water and everything looked normal: ammonia 0, nitrites 0, nitrates 5, pH 7.4.
I did a water change yesterday and did some cleaning of hair algae that has been over taking my tank. I don't know if they got stressed out from that or if there is something I am missing? My cories don't bother the shrimp at all, and for the most part the shrimp have also hung out under a big rock I have in there.
I am super sad and don't want to lose the other two, if it's not too late for them. Any ideas??

Thank you!
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Old 09-25-2017, 09:11 PM   #2
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Any idea what the KH and GH values are? Caridina shrimp (Crystals, Tigers, etc) require very low KH (0-1), GH (4-6), pH (5.8-6.4), TDS (100-180) as well as cooler temperatures (70-73F). These values are not typical found in tap water; many folks use RODI and remineralize it to the specs listed above.
IMO I would start off with easier shrimp such as red cherry shrimp as they are more forgiving parameter wise.
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Old 09-25-2017, 09:21 PM   #3
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Any idea what the KH and GH values are? Caridina shrimp (Crystals, Tigers, etc) require very low KH (0-1), GH (4-6), pH (5.8-6.4), TDS (100-180) as well as cooler temperatures (70-73F). These values are not typical found in tap water; many folks use RODI and remineralize it to the specs listed above.
IMO I would start off with easier shrimp such as red cherry shrimp as they are more forgiving parameter wise.


GH is 0 and kH is 80ppm. Not sure what TDS. The temp is at 78.

Red cherry shrimp would tolerate these parameters fine? Do you think the temp and the kH is what is killing the shrimp? How do you lower kh?
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Old 09-25-2017, 09:43 PM   #4
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A KH of 80 ppm converts to 4.5 dKH.
How did you perform the acclimation? I'm a big fan of a slow drip over 1-2 hours. Yes, the temp and KH may be factors to their current condition. Personally, I like smaller tanks with no fish for the shrimp (potential return on investment when they breed).
Those parameters should be fine for RCS though the GH and KH are a bit on the low side. When I started with RCS I was getting a 33% survival rate with store bought shrimp. They would live for several weeks and then die after molting. I started adding calcium using cuttlebone and Montmorrilonite calcium clay and bought shrimp from breeders.
KH can be decreased with the addition of DI water. However, this will also impact other parameters.
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Old 09-25-2017, 09:51 PM   #5
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A KH of 80 ppm converts to 4.5 dKH.
How did you perform the acclimation? I'm a big fan of a slow drip over 1-2 hours. Yes, the temp and KH may be factors to their current condition. Personally, I like smaller tanks with no fish for the shrimp (potential return on investment when they breed).
Those parameters should be fine for RCS though the GH and KH are a bit on the low side. When I started with RCS I was getting a 33% survival rate with store bought shrimp. They would live for several weeks and then die after molting. I started adding calcium using cuttlebone and Montmorrilonite calcium clay and bought shrimp from breeders.
KH can be decreased with the addition of DI water. However, this will also impact other parameters.

Wow. Ok a few questions.

What is DI water?
What is molting?
How can I raise gH?
And will the red cherry shrimp be easier to keep alive? I wanted something in my tank to help eat the algae. And I like watching the shrimp.
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Old 09-25-2017, 10:38 PM   #6
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Wow. Ok a few questions.

What is DI water?
What is molting?
How can I raise gH?
And will the red cherry shrimp be easier to keep alive? I wanted something in my tank to help eat the algae. And I like watching the shrimp.
DI = deionized water. It is water purified by passing it through special resins. I keep getting this confused with distilled water which is a totally different thing.
Molting is when shrimp (or any creature with an exoskeleton) sheds its older exoskeleton in order to grow (since exoskeletons do not stretch like skin).
GH can be increased by adding calcium carbonate (crushed coral, cuttlebone pieces).
Yes, RCS are easier to keep alive.
There are many types of algae; RCS may eat some but not all. Sometimes I prep plants for shipping by dropping them in the shrimp tank for a day or two to allow the shrimp to graze. But they really subside on biofilm which is present in most well established tanks.
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