Red cherry shrimp death

michaelsf90

I'm new to keeping shrimp. I've had ten red cherry shrimp for around 4 months now. They havent bred yet. I have tights over the filter to reduce flow and to not suck any fry up. Anyway when doing a water change today I noticed a shrimp upside down in my carpet plant not moving. Touched it and again nothing. So I'm guessing its died. Tested the water. Ph is 7.4. Ammonia is 0. Nitrite is 0. Gh is 4 and kh is 2. All other nine shrimp are alive and fine. Anyone any ideas?
 

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cdw202x

I started out with 7 cherry shrimp back in November 2020. I more or less left mine alone and sooner or later, they started to multiply. Now I estimate that I have about 30. Note that I am not culling any so they will never be anything fancy, either.

Anyway, my thoughts, in no particular order:
  1. Your shrimp are all the same sex
  2. Get a WECO shell for your tank. I have heard these make your water more hospitable for invertibares-- increasing water clarity and calcium for shell building . (I use 1 small one every three weeks or so)
  3. Maybe your nitrates are too high? (you didn't mention them in your posting) I have found that shrimp are like fish-- best >20 ppm nitrates.
  4. Keep your tank between 75 and 82. (you didn't mention a temp in the above)
  5. Add (boiled) IAL. The red cherry shrimp I have love to eat these things. I usually keep two large ones in the 10 gallon tank all the time for them to munch on, removing and replacing with a fresh leaf when it's just the skeleton
  6. Provide shelters (like small coconut huts or hideaways) that the shrimp can retreat to if needed. Also, add lots of free floating live plants. Java ferns work well for this.
  7. Maybe add more filtration? I have two sponge filters and a box filter for my 10 gallon tank and the shrimp do fine just flying all around in there
  8. Be sure to condition the water when doing water changes!
  9. And like the rotissary chickens-- set it and forget it! Seriously, I do once a week water changes and forget about the tank otherwise... and suddenly the population had bloomed!
  10. As for the dead shrimp, I wouldn't worry about it. Maybe it was an older shrimp or maybe it had a weaker immune system... who knows why?
 
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michaelsf90

Thank you for the detailed reply. Nitrates I rarely test because they are always below 5. The test changes to a colour between 0 and 5. The temp is 22C/72F. Its suppose to be summer here. When it is the tank will be 24C plus without a heater. I was thinking of putting some coconut shell under the carpeting plant? What is IAL. I am going to start feeding them hikari shrimp cuisine. I feed vitalis freshwater shrimp pellets twice a week at the minute. I occasionally add hikari mini algae wafers. I dont fancy feeding them more as the tank is 25 Litres so would be easy to foul the water up
 

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cdw202x

IAL are Indian Almond Leaves. I first found about about them here on Fishlore since they are supposed to be good for bettas, but I found they are useful in other cases.

Something else that I thought of with feeding-- when I had a shrimp only tank, I fed them only once every two or three days. It's very easy to overfeed them-- it was one of the things I struggled with transitioning from a betta tank to shrimp. They will eat the algae, so don't worry about overfeeding them, which can in turn foul the water.

Thanks for the pic of your tank. Here is a a short video of my shrimp (and now ember tetra) tank. I like to provide lots of places for both the shrimp and fish to hide. This tank all has free floating plants so every time I do a water change, everything changes!
 
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Pfrozen

Your GH is too low for the shrimp to molt. You need minimum 6 dGH, with 8 dGH being an ideal target.

KH isn't as important but keep in mind that with a KH of 2 you need to be careful about pH swings. Shrimp are sensitive to things like that
 
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michaelsf90

That's a very well planted lovely looking tank. I'm very cautious with over feeding. The water round here is incredibly soft. I have crushed coral in the filter to buffer the ph. Ph in the tank is 7.4. When I do water changes I add bicarbonate soda to raise the ph to 7.4. I had limestone in. Only a small rock. But the ph was going too high. I've found I cant get kh higher than 2. How would I raise gh? I add mineral junkies once a week. Its suppose to contain all the vitamins and minerals for healthy molting as is hikari shrimp cuisine
 
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Pfrozen

That's a very well planted lovely looking tank. I'm very cautious with over feeding. The water round here is incredibly soft. I have crushed coral in the filter to buffer the ph. Ph in the tank is 7.4. When I do water changes I add bicarbonate soda to raise the ph to 7.4. I had limestone in. Only a small rock. But the ph was going too high. I've found I cant get kh higher than 2. How would I raise gh? I add mineral junkies once a week. Its suppose to contain all the vitamins and minerals for healthy molting as is hikari shrimp cuisine

The mineral supplements are more dietary, the actual water needs to be hard enough. You can buy some NilocG ReGen if you want and just add a bit during water changes to slowly bring it up. You already have crushed coral in your filter so this would be plan B

Don't raise anything too fast though. cherries are sensitive to osmotic shock. You do need to fix it in any case... the one pictured likely died because it couldn't molt
 
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michaelsf90

Should I use seachem equilibrium to raise the gh? I will struggle to raise kh without raising the ph
 
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Pfrozen

Should I use seachem equilibrium to raise the gh? I will struggle to raise kh without raising the ph

You can use whichever GH supplement you choose, doesn't really matter. Just make sure to be consistent and accurate
 
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michaelsf90

The crushed coral from what I can gather only really raises the kh and raises the ph. I ideally wanted a ph of 7.2 but with the crushed coral I can only really keep it at 7.4. When I do a water change I add bicarbonate soda so the ph is 7.2. The actual ph of the water from the tap is 6.6 with minimal gh and minimal kh. Too small amounts to read. I learnt the hard way. I also lost fish due to having crushed coral raise the ph and then adding freshwater with the ph at 6.6. So now I add the bicarbonate soda as keep the ph consistent when changing water. Less fluctuations. When I add the equilibrium I will do it with water changes. Thing is how often will I need to add it to raise it. If I change water once a week will it raise it enough without it being used up? Or should I do two small water changes a week to get it up to level. I know once it's at level it's going to be trial and error for what I want and need to maintain it. I've finally got there with the kh and ph. Now its the gh. I may as well do the same with my larger tank with fish in as well
 
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richiep

I'm glad Pfrozen stepped in with the right information as to why it died, if you don't get that gh up they will all die, forget about everything else you've read for now concentrate on that gh

You can fast track this if you want by taking all the shrimp out then get your gh up stright away you will then have to drip the shrimp for at least 2hrs to re acclimatise them to the new gh
Or as Pfrozen says raise it slowly through water changes
Gh5 will just about put you in the safe zone but gh6 is safe, aim for gh8 eventually
Keep following Pfrozen advise I dont want to take over from someone who's already giving good advise, I've just given you and alternative way to raise the gh
 
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michaelsf90

Shall I do daily water changes or one every other day? Il raise the gh in my main tank to 6. It has corys, danios and a selection of snails. I was shocked the shrimp werent eating the dead shrimp. I'm frustrated because it was one of the really deep red ones as well. I'm also considering adding black sand but it's a lot sharper than the soft silver sand I have in
What substrate would be best. Theirs fluval stratum but that alters ph. I was thinking unipac limpopo sand as its inert?
 
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Pfrozen

Shall I do daily water changes or one every other day? Il raise the gh in my main tank to 6. It has corys, danios and a selection of snails. I was shocked the shrimp werent eating the dead shrimp. I'm frustrated because it was one of the really deep red ones as well. I'm also considering adding black sand but it's a lot sharper than the soft silver sand I have in
What substrate would be best. Theirs fluval stratum but that alters ph. I was thinking unipac limpopo sand as its inert?

Dripping would actually be a better option I think, thanks richiep :D

The pH/KH is not an issue... active substrates are great... focus on your GH specifically for now
 
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michaelsf90

I have equilibrium coming today. Il add it and drip acclimate them later. What would you suggest for a dark substrate. Other bad news is a cory in my main tank isnt moving much and keeps flopping on its side. Tested the water and everything is fine. Gh was 5 when I tested ages ago but is now 3 so no idea what's wrong with the cory unless again its gh. All other fish are fine
 
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Pfrozen

I have equilibrium coming today. Il add it and drip acclimate them later. What would you suggest for a dark substrate. Other bad news is a cory in my main tank isnt moving much and keeps flopping on its side. Tested the water and everything is fine. Gh was 5 when I tested ages ago but is now 3 so no idea what's wrong with the cory unless again its gh. All other fish are fine

There's nothing wrong with Fluval Stratum.... it buffers KH/pH but still within the range for cherry shrimp.... if you really want to change it just go with a fine gravel or sand.... I wouldn't though
 
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michaelsf90

Its more a black substrate means its easier to see the shrimp. I have snails in with the shrimp which is why I want the ph to be above 7. I'm gutted about the cory. Two things in two separate tanks is worrying me. I'm thinking even tho Cory's dont like salt to do a very weak salt dip to kick in osmoregulation then slowly raise the gh in the main tank as well as the small tank
 
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Pfrozen

Its more a black substrate means its easier to see the shrimp. I have snails in with the shrimp which is why I want the ph to be above 7. I'm gutted about the cory. Two things in two separate tanks is worrying me. I'm thinking even tho Cory's dont like salt to do a very weak salt dip to kick in osmoregulation then slowly raise the gh in the main tank as well as the small tank

3 dGH is too soft for most fish so yes, definitely raise it. Not sure what's wrong with the cory though so I can't recommend a treatment
 
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michaelsf90

Unfortunately the cory passed. The shrimp tank is now gh 5, kg 2 and ph 7.2. Is that more ideal? I'm hoping to see breeding over the summer as temperatures rise. The heater is set at 22C/72F. But in summer it should get to 24C/75F as temperatures warm up
 
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Pfrozen

Unfortunately the cory passed. The shrimp tank is now gh 5, kg 2 and ph 7.2. Is that more ideal? I'm hoping to see breeding over the summer as temperatures rise. The heater is set at 22C/72F. But in summer it should get to 24C/75F as temperatures warm up

No, the minimum GH is 6 degrees. You still need to raise it. Like I said before, aim for 8 dGH as your target. pH and KH can come later, for now they aren't as important
 
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michaelsf90

Il do another tonight. I'm using seachem equilibrium. Would be easier using replenish but I've been told equilibrium is better but its harder to get the dosing right with it being powder. Once I get my water butt setup in the garden I'm hoping rainwater has more hardness than water from the tap so itll make water changes easier
 
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Pfrozen

Il do another tonight. I'm using seachem equilibrium. Would be easier using replenish but I've been told equilibrium is better but its harder to get the dosing right with it being powder. Once I get my water butt setup in the garden I'm hoping rainwater has more hardness than water from the tap so itll make water changes easier

Rainwater will be soft in almost all cases. I would also be wary of using rainwater at all if you live in an industrial area. I wouldn't be able to use rainwater in my own city
 
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Cinabar

Il do another tonight. I'm using seachem equilibrium. Would be easier using replenish but I've been told equilibrium is better but its harder to get the dosing right with it being powder. Once I get my water butt setup in the garden I'm hoping rainwater has more hardness than water from the tap so itll make water changes easier

Rainwater will have basically zero hardness, unless it somehow magically picks up minerals from the sky haha. Like pfrozen said, be careful if you live in a large city or in an area with factories and such. The rain might be contaminated.
 
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michaelsf90

Good point. Looks like it's more time consuming on the water changes front then
 
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