Help! shrimp mysteriously dying

abbytherookiehuman

Member
ok about 3 months ago I bought a batch of 10 rcs and slowly I started noticing that there were less and less in my tank. about one month ago I bought 20 more shrimp and they were doing great until about a week ago. I noticed one dead shrimp and just assumed it was random but yesterday there were two more and today there was yet another dead shrimp. and that’s just what I can see!
I also noticed two planarian worms three days ago and treated the tank with no planaria(shrimp safe). the next day was when I found two dead shrimp.
I did a small water change after the first death and another yesterday. I tested the water and found nothing wrong
can someone help me out and tell me what i’m doing wrong
it’s a 31gal planted tank with two sponge filters and it’s set to 22° celsius
one of the dead shrimp

a healthy shrimp
two dead shrimp


 

richiep

Member
sorry to here this abby your wster looks good
that shrimp in the second photo can you siphon him into a clear tube and take s closer pic like my photo
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
I have a gala day today but i’ll get onto that when I get home
 

jamieriedinger20

Member
Check ph.
They are sensitive to big drops.
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
jamieriedinger20 said:
Check ph.
They are sensitive to big drops.
look at above picture for water tests

so there were no dead shrimp today that I could see. richie.p did you want me to get a live one or a dead one?
 

richiep

Member
A dead one don't stress the live ones, this is only to try and identify disease, if you can take close ups of the live in the tank we may be able to see something in its early stage
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
richie.p said:
A dead one don't stress the live ones, this is only to try and identify disease, if you can take close ups of the live in the tank we may be able to see something in its early stage
Thank you. I can't see any dead shrimp today and all the live shrimp are acting really skittish like they'll be chilling still and suddenly theyll jump a few inches away. I can see 8 now and can't get any good photos but here you go
 

richiep

Member
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
richie.p said:
When did you do your last water change and how much
last one must have been 3-4 days ago. another dead shrimp yesterday but I couldn’t reach it
 

Inner10

Member
First thing I'd do is check all water parameters. Your PH looks maxed out, check with a high range test. What's your KH? GH? What's the substrate in the tank?
 

richiep

Member
abbytherookiehuman said:
last one must have been 3-4 days ago. another dead shrimp yesterday but I couldn’t reach it
Use a tube and suck it into it
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
richie.p said:
Use a tube and suck it into it
It was away in a corner behind some rocks and I couldn't reach it with a tube
 

barbiespoodle

Member
Maybe only me, but what is your water temperature?

I made the mistake of keeping my temps in the high 70 Fahrenheit, don't know what that is as far as Celsius. It was because my shrimp tank started as a grow out tank for my live bearer fry and I just never thought to change it.

I started having unexplained shrimp death, always the larger ones. Wasn't constant, I'd find one and then a few days or a few weeks later, another.

At first I'm like, ok, they are not long lived, maybe they were old.

But I have since learned that the higher the temp, the higher the metabolic rate of the shrimp, in short, they grow faster, but have a shorter life.

I slowly reduced my water temps to the low 70's and the babies are still fine and the older ones are also thriving.

Just a thought to consider.
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
barbiespoodle said:
Maybe only me, but what is your water temperature?

I made the mistake of keeping my temps in the high 70 Fahrenheit, don't know what that is as far as Celsius. It was because my shrimp tank started as a grow out tank for my live bearer fry and I just never thought to change it.

I started having unexplained shrimp death, always the larger ones. Wasn't constant, I'd find one and then a few days or a few weeks later, another.

At first I'm like, ok, they are not long lived, maybe they were old.

But I have since learned that the higher the temp, the higher the metabolic rate of the shrimp, in short, they grow faster, but have a shorter life.

I slowly reduced my water temps to the low 70's and the babies are still fine and the older ones are also thriving.

Just a thought to consider.
my tank is ~24° celsius so i’ll turn it down to 22 when I get home and see if anything changes. I counted 8 shrimp last night and haven’t noticed any deaths in the past couple of days. the tank is also finally crystal clear


 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
I've just found my first berrie!!! She only seems to have three or four eggs though. Could there be a reason for this? I think this is her first clutch and I'm worried about her dropping them or dying. I'm too scared to touch the tank at all now in case I mess something up

Inner10 said:
First thing I'd do is check all water parameters. Your PH looks maxed out, check with a high range test. What's your KH? GH? What's the substrate in the tank?
High range had similar results. Substrate is a mix of river gravel, pisces black quartz and Oliver Knott sand that's really fine (iron sand?). I'll test the rest when I get home
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
Spoke too soon. Had another death today. I couldn't see a body huts a couple of hours ago and when I came out just now I saw two other shrimp nibbling at him (trying to eat his exoskeleton I think)

He was only little. Can someone tell me what might have happened to him?
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
Inner10 said:
First thing I'd do is check all water parameters. Your PH looks maxed out, check with a high range test. What's your KH? GH? What's the substrate in the tank?
kh is ~3 with gh at 5
TDs is 130
Ph looks like it might be around 8!!!

I’m pretty confident that ammonia, nitrite and nitrate are all 0
Copper tested negative
What am I missing?
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
Another death! Can someone please offer me some guidance
 

FantasyFanVII

Member
Are you running CO2? I've had issues with it and shrimp before.
What are you feeding them, and how often? Do they seem like they're eating normally? I know it's impossible to make sure every single shrimp eats, but a good sign is a large group of them congregating to where the food is whenever you feed them.
That test looks more like 7.4 Ph to me, although it can be hard to tell with them, especially in a pic. It shouldn't matter if it is 8 though. I've kept neocaridin shrimp in tanks with 8 Ph with no issues.
If all else fails, you could try general meds. I've used Aquarium Co-Op's before with shrimp and never had issues with it. I've only ever run them lightly though. I'll dose all the meds together at a regular dosage, wait a week, do a 40-50% water change, then do it again for one more week. If nothing in the tank has shown any sign of illness, they leave QT.
Of course it'd be better to identify exactly what's going on, but it might be worth trying.
This really is an odd one. All your water parameters seem fine, and there's nothing obviously wrong with the shrimp. Note: I'm not a vet, so I could be missing something. I'm sorry this is happening, and hopefully we can sort it out.
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
I’m not running co2 and I feed them varied commercial foods like micro pellets, snowflake sticks, shrimp cuisine and a few others. I feed them a small amount almost every day and usually they come together for a nibble. There are only about 10 in the tank right now including one carrying two eggs. I don’t want her to die and I want her babies to be healthy. I don’t want to go buy more shrimp and have them all die on me too.
 

FantasyFanVII

Member
Hmm. It honestly sounds like you have a good set up. How quickly do they go through their food? If they completely devour it in less then 5 minutes, it might be worth adding a little more or giving them the same amount twice a day if you can. Such a small number of shrimp shouldn't need too much though. If you do increase their food, make sure it doesn't stay in the tank too long and keep an eye on your water parameters to make sure they don't get thrown out of whack.
Beyond that, my best advice is to just run general meds through them. And if you do get more shrimp, try getting them from a different source, if possible.
Sorry I couldn't be much help. Hopefully someone else can, and good luck.
 

Inner10

Member
Your parameters look good, I wish I could offer more constructive advice but what is going on is beyond my level of experience.
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
I was really hoping it was something obvious that I had overlooked! *sadface* I’ve gotten the shrimp from two different places in the hopes of better luck as well. What general meds are certified Rcs safe?

I’m going into Sydney city on Monday. Can anybody recommend an aquarium or pet store that sells red cherry shrimp at a good price?
 

FantasyFanVII

Member
I've only ever used the Aquarium Co-Op med trio. It consists of Ich-X (Malachite green), Mardel Maracyn (Erythromycin), and Fritz Paracleanse (metronidazole/praziquantel) Anything without copper should be ok.
Unfortunately, I'm in the US so I'm not sure exactly what you'll be able to get. Your best bet may honestly be to go to a LFS, see what they have, and talk to an employee (if you trust them) or goggle "is X shrimp safe"
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
FantasyFanVII said:
I've only ever used the Aquarium Co-Op med trio. It consists of Ich-X (Malachite green), Mardel Maracyn (Erythromycin), and Fritz Paracleanse (metronidazole/praziquantel) Anything without copper should be ok.
Unfortunately, I'm in the US so I'm not sure exactly what you'll be able to get. Your best bet may honestly be to go to a LFS, see what they have, and talk to an employee (if you trust them) or goggle "is X shrimp safe"
Thanks I’ll look into it
 

tjander

Member
Excuse me are you the same person who is having a tough go with your snails as well? Are they in the same tank?
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
tjander said:
Excuse me are you the same person who is having a tough go with your snails as well? Are they in the same tank?
Yes and yes. The snails only lasted about a week and the shrimp have been going for a couple of months so I figured it was something unrelated. Have I been stupid about that? If there’s a connection would that help solve the problem?
 

tjander

Member
So they both are invertebrates both need calcium in there diet. Neither tolerate copper in excess... I don’t have much experience with snails but from what I know snails should be a bit less demanding. So to be honest the snails should have lasted longer then the shrimp
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
tjander said:
So they both are invertebrates both need calcium in there diet. Neither tolerate copper in excess... I don’t have much experience with snails but from what I know snails should be a bit less demanding. So to be honest the snails should have lasted longer then the shrimp
that's what I thought! There are no traces of copper though and they're getting calcium. I'm at a loss
 

tjander

Member
I think you might really want to try and get a second opinion on your water. Something is just not adding up here.
 

Sputnik

Member
Any recent bacterial blooms ( cloudy water) or did you do a recent deep clean (gravel vac/malm removal)? I have had die offs that look like yours when I let the malm in the substrate of one of my neo tanks build up too much and then did a deep clean- I suspect that stirs up bacteria buried in the substrate and susceptible shrimp get infected. I had milky looking water the day after the deep clean and had sporadic die offs over the next several days- the water stayed cloudy so I dosed with kanamycin and that seemed to take care of the issue. Not scientific, I know, but I learned to be careful not to let malm build up after that and it seemed to prevent a repeat event. Good luck!
 

FantasyFanVII

Member
Have you seen your shrimp molt? Adults should do it about once every 1-2 months.
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
Sputnik said:
Any recent bacterial blooms ( cloudy water) or did you do a recent deep clean (gravel vac/malm removal)? I have had die offs that look like yours when I let the malm in the substrate of one of my neo tanks build up too much and then did a deep clean- I suspect that stirs up bacteria buried in the substrate and susceptible shrimp get infected. I had milky looking water the day after the deep clean and had sporadic die offs over the next several days- the water stayed cloudy so I dosed with kanamycin and that seemed to take care of the issue. Not scientific, I know, but I learned to be careful not to let malm build up after that and it seemed to prevent a repeat event. Good luck!
No deep cleans but I did have a pretty green tank for a while. That hasn’t been a problem recently though

FantasyFanVII said:
Have you seen your shrimp molt? Adults should do it about once every 1-2 months.
I’ve not seen them do it but I’ve seen the molted exoskeletons lying around

tjander said:
I think you might really want to try and get a second opinion on your water. Something is just not adding up here.
I know right. I’ll have a poke around
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
So I MIGHT have a big sign that can help identify my problem. Today I found a shrimp on one side of the thank and on the complete opposite side of the tank I noticed a rusty coloured patch that certainly wasn’t there yesterday. I’ve seen something similar once before but it went away

I find this to be a bit alarming!


If no one can identify a problem and the shrimp keep dying, I think I’m going to let them die off then do a few changes and try get some Malaysian trumpet snails in there with some RO water (maybe) and then reintroduce the shrimp. I can’t see any other option right now
 

Sputnik

Member
Regarding the red patch- does it seem like a kind of biofilm, or does it seem like something leached or from a. Object nearby. If it isn't normal in yoiur tank, I would try to carefully get it out
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
Sputnik said:
Regarding the red patch- does it seem like a kind of biofilm, or does it seem like something leached or from a. Object nearby. If it isn't normal in yoiur tank, I would try to carefully get it out
Biofilm? Maybe... I’m not sure

Both times it’s appeared it was in the same spot, right next to where I feed them
 

Sputnik

Member
I wonder if its red cyanobacteria? They like areas of low flow and some produce toxins that might explain the die—off.
Aquarium Cyanobacteria
I don't have direct experience with cyanobacteria but am hoping someomne who does can weigh in...
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
Sputnik said:
I wonder if its red cyanobacteria? They like areas of low flow and some produce toxins that might explain the die—off.
Aquarium Cyanobacteria
I don't have direct experience with cyanobacteria but am hoping someomne who does can weigh in...
I thought that happened when there are high nitrates
 

Sputnik

Member
I don't think its as straightforward as that with cyanobacteria
How to identify and kill blue-green algae (In just days!)



Removing Cyanobacteria From the Aquarium



I may be guessing wrong, since red cyanobacteria usually occurs in saltwater tanks, but theycan grow ( rately) in freshwater tanks, and the photos look similar to yours.
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
The thing is that it doesn’t spread. It goes away in just a couple of days
 

tjander

Member
Could you be over feeding? Causing an ammonia spike?
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
tjander said:
Could you be over feeding? Causing an ammonia spike?
I only feed a little bit every couple of days... Could that be the problem?
 

Sputnik

Member
Do you feed your shrimp using a glass dish? I find that helps temendously with pollution from uneaten food. They poo in there too, so when I lift out the dishbevery night its like a minI gravel vac!
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
Sputnik said:
Do you feed your shrimp using a glass dish? I find that helps temendously with pollution from uneaten food. They poo in there too, so when I lift out the dishbevery night its like a minI gravel vac!
I use the glass dish that's in the photo though the food doesn't alwsys land inside

two dead today!

I ordered a phosphate test kit out of desperation to find a problem and that arrived today and says no phosphates
 

FantasyFanVII

Member
You could try feeding a small meal every day or every other day. Try using a turkey baster to get it in the dish, assuming it's a sinking food. If they leave a ton of food after every meal, feed less/less often. You should also notice an ammonia spike if you do feed too much, so watch out for it.
 

JettsPapa

Member
abbytherookiehuman said:
I use the glass dish that's in the photo though the food doesn't alwsys land inside
I insert the food through a drinking straw to get it where I want it.
 

Sputnik

Member
One thing I do that helps me is to fill the dish with tank water, put the food in and let it soak until it sinks, then very, very carefully place it in the tank. I also use a dish with a higher ( one inch tall) rI'm to prevent spillage. I hardly ever get any, but pipet up any on the rare occasion something falls out. I remove the dish when I come home from work so leftovers don’t sit. I feed small amounts daily for my shrimp-only tank but much less frequently for tanks with fish (mainly mineral supplements). This practice made a real difference in my shrimp-only tank. Much less debris in my substrate.
 

tjander

Member
Did you ever get a second opinion on your water from the lfs?
 
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abbytherookiehuman

Member
My lfs isn't so local and they're kinda hopeless. I didn't feed last night and I still had a death this morning

Maybe shrimp just aren't right for me. Or maybe I should Tear it down and start again?
 

Sputnik

Member
Don’t give up! Clearly you have done a lot of research and are doing your best to give them all that they need! And, if you tear it down and start over with the same tank, you may not eliminate the problem, since the issue has not been identifieddefinitively. Where did you buy your shrimp? If it was online ( or sometimes even if it wasn’t) you can ask the seller for advice. Maybe try Flip aquatics? In some areas cooperative extensions may also be willing to help.
 

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