Red Cherry Shrimp Dying?

j0_

HI everyone!
About 5 months ago I got my first fish tank (20L), with 6 red cherries. A week ago, I found one dead, and this morning two more... Water conditions seem normal to me:
pH ~7.9
Temp 24 Celcius
Ammonia and nitrites 0 ppm
Nitrates ~15 ppm
I usually do 10% water changes every 3 days, but switched to daily 10% changes since the first death. I also use API stress coat when doing water changes.
I think it's also worth mentioning that I was abroad for 3 months and had given my 6 shrimp to a friend to take care of (when I came back she gave me back 7 and I had one in my tank, very surprisingly). When I got them back they were mostly grey but now they're all displaying vibrant reds which I reckon means everything should be fine?
I don't know what could be killing them?? Old age? A disease? The first one died two days after I fed them spinach so I assumed it must have been the oxalic acid...
Any help would be greatly greatly appreciated!
Jon
 

Jocelyn Adelman

How long ago did you add them back to the tank? Did you acclimate? What is your kH and gH? Friends kH and gH?
 

Mazeus

Also, what is your TDS?

FYI 15ppm nitrates is on the high side for shrimp. I try to keep my shrimp tanks to 5ppm or under.
 

j0_

Added them back about a month ago now, although now that you mention it I probably didn't acclimate long enough ("friend" I mentioned hates me now so she brought them back in a really tiny plastic bag which certainly didn't look like a healthy environment, I couldn't bear to leave them in there too long so I let them out after like 10 minutes). I don't have anything to test gH or kH but I'm using tap water which is supposedly soft here in the East of Scotland. No idea about TDS either :/
Do you think they're dying because of the nitrates?
 

WTFish?

Added them back about a month ago now, although now that you mention it I probably didn't acclimate long enough ("friend" I mentioned hates me now so she brought them back in a really tiny plastic bag which certainly didn't look like a healthy environment, I couldn't bear to leave them in there too long so I let them out after like 10 minutes). I don't have anything to test gH or kH but I'm using tap water which is supposedly soft here in the East of Scotland. No idea about TDS either :/
Do you think they're dying because of the nitrates?
How soft is your water? That can also cause isssues.
 

j0_

For now, I can only assume anywhere between 0-100mg/L calcium carbonate, I have to get a testing kit to get more precision. What do you recommend I do to save the remaining shrimp?
 

Mazeus

Its difficult because we don't know the problem at the moment. Have you seen any molts in the tank? One of the common reasons RCS die is a lack of KH, as this causes problems with adults shrimp molting.
 

j0_

Ah, that might be it! Haven't seen any in a while (pretty sure the last one I spotted was like a week and a half ago?)
 

richiep

HI jon. Not aclamating shrimp properly is by far the main killer I see, shrimp go into shock and die, they should be acclamatised for at least 2hrs that can extend to 6hrs depending on the water they come from to the water they go into,even when I transfer from one tank to another this still applies, you may get away with it with young shrimp but older ones can't take it, spinach is one of the best shrimp foods I feed high in minerals should be blanched for 40seconds before use, again that wount kill them unless there was pestaside on it, you need to get your nitraits down to 5. Shrimp are easily shocked, this is another killer, if your putting cold water stright into 24c can result in shock you should try and warm the water to around the same tank temperature, 24c is a little high 22.5 is best, although they will live in 24c their lifespan will be shortened but they do breed faster, as for age, they only live for 18 months give or take so that could be a factor, feed them a little frozen bloodworm this will help with protein and some well cooked broccolI stem will help with minerals and help condition them for the moult which is another killer,
 

j0_

I see, thanks very much I'll try and get to those conditions asap.
Also what kH values would be safe for rcs? How do you raise kH safely?
 

richiep

Anything up to 10 is fine but I've seen it 15
GH is more critical if that's below 5 it can cause moulting issues, if you've a test kit do all the perameters that will give you a good place to start
 

j0_

Ok, I need to go grab a test kit for kH/gH cos I can only do pH ammonia nitrites nitrates for now.. will keep you's updated as soon as I get it thanks!
 

richiep

TDS is also another important factor
A TDS meter can be picked up on ebay or Amazon
For £4 but is something you'll always use especially when acclimitiseing
 

j0_

Ok, my tds meter will arrive on tuesday

Here are the updated water params:
pH: ~7.4
kH and gH: 0
Ammonia: slightly more than 0, maybe 0.1-0.2ppm
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 2-3ppm
Temperature: 22.5 celcius

I guess my goal is to raise gH to above 5? How can I go about that?
 

richiep

PH fine
Nitraits fine
Temp fine
Ammonia are you using strips or liquid test
What's the KH&GH COMING out the tap
 

j0_

I'm using liquid test for pH ammonia nitrates and nitrites
Tapwater kH and gH are both 0 as well
 

Ddogg2287

are your using well water or water from an RO unit? that sounds like that may be your problem. I use distilled water with salty shrimp gH. I think they have one that raises kH as well
 

richiep

Ok if you take the top off and look down the tube over white paper when doing ammonia test you'll probly find it's zero.
The GH is what's killing the shrimp as it's causing moulting problems . I use bee shrimp mineralGH+ photo attached, as I make RO water which gives better control on keeping water perameters safe for shrimp, it can also be used for your tap water,
 

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j0_

Yep, fair enough, ammonia is 0
Thank you, I ordered some of that Bee shrimp gh++. It won't arrive until october 16th though,is there anything I can do in the meantime to save my remaining shrimp?
 

richiep

Ddogg2287 is right about one that raises gh&kh link below. Look for minerals then scroll through
 

richiep

Can you cancel that order snd get the one with gh/kh from pro shrimp you'll have it tuesday
 

j0_

Ok doing that, perfect! thanks!!
 

richiep

In the mean time this is a difficult one as if they try and moult they will die,
Have you got a local LFS

Ddogg2287 any ideas on a short term solution
Equilibrium?
 

j0_

My LFS isn't that good, I went this morning but they didnt know anything about raising kH or gH...
 

richiep

Seachem Equilibrium will do it but I'd your lfs can't help with raising GH I don't suppose they stock it but it would be worth a ring.
How many shrimp in the tank?
 

j0_

It's down to 3 or 4 shrimp, hard to tell because of all the hiding spots. If the pregnant one doesn't make it, I guess I'll have to restock once the water is safe...
I'll give them a call, try and see if I can get Seachem equilibrium then.
Btw, I really appreciate your help, thanks so much!

They do have it! Back to the lfs this afternoon it is Any advice on how much/how often I should add it in until I get the kh/gh+? Just the recommended dose?
 

richiep

This is where it get tricky rising should be done slowly but due to having only a few shrimp I can only advise how ide do it unless someone else in the meantime comes up with something different. Ide take out about 1/2ltr of water from the tank,catch what shrimp you can and put then in the 1/2ltr.
Then take out about half of the water left and mix equilibrium to recommended dose and test for GH if it's anywhere between 5 and 15 you can then add that back to the tank where it will dilute, if it's not add a bit more equilibrium, gently add back to main tank and mix very gently not to disturb, now what your going to do is drip the shrimp in the container from the tank, to do this you will need a length of air pipe feeding from the tank to the container with shrimp, tie a knot in the pipe until it drips at one drip per second leave it feed into the container and every half hr or so take a cup full out and put it back in the tank you will need to do this for a good 6hrs for the shrimp to acclamatise.
Normally you would not put the water back in the tank but in your case it's come out of there, if your unsure of the dripping processes let me know and I post some pics, if you have a bit of moss put that in with the shrimp they will cling to it, if not speak nice to life for just a little, once you are happy float the shrimp in the tank for 10 minutes just to warm through and gently release, if you miss any shrimp they will probly die with this process as the shock of raising GH quick will kill them
 

j0_

Ok, got it, I'll try this procedure. I'm not too sure about how to do the dripping part, what kind of pipe would I need for it? What I normally do when doing water changes is drip the water into the tank from an upturned bottle with small holes in the cap. It's a bit faster than a drop a second but I can hack up something to slow it down further. Would that be reasonable? Also, what should I do about heating? I guess I could just slowly turn it down all the way to room temperature first, do the whole process, and then once they're back in the tank slowly bring it back up to 22.5?
 

richiep


44 (26).jpg Don't worry to much about the heating, the pipe I use is the same as you run you air stone off from lfs about 90p Mrs tie a knot in to to slow the water down it must be slow see if you can understand from this photo if not I'll do it again for you
 

j0_

ok I see, I think that makes sense I'll see if I can manage to set that up. Nice tanks, btw!
 

richiep

Those are my stock tanks I'll show you some others later
 

j0_

I've added the Equilibrium to the tank which brought GH up to ~8, however it's been an hour and the water is still very cloudy... idk if I should start dripping now or should I wait until it clears up completely?
 

richiep

Dos it say anything about it going cloudy on the bottle
 

j0_

it says "the resulting mixture will have a white opaque appearance. when this mixture is added to the aquarium it will impact a slight haze that should clear within 15-30 minutes" and nothing else about that... maybe my filter is just not powerful enough..
 

richiep

Well Hopefully a slow drip should do the job and by the time ist finished your tank should be clear fingers It will do the job, you can't wait all night it's not practical so go for it
 

j0_

ok! I'll start then thanks!
 

richiep

I've never been down this road and hopefully it wount cause any problems , I just hope it all goes ok for you, ive read the instructions and can't see any sort of side effects like a bacterial crash so your cycle should stay intact it will NOT add ammonia or nitrits to the tank,
 

j0_

Good to know thanks a lot! So far so good, I figured out the dripping process!
 

richiep

Take you time and do a good job keep us posted
 

j0_

Quick update, after ~2 hrs 30 the tank is finally looking less cloudy
 

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