Shrimp on Back and Twitching

Kedeen

Member
2 of my 4 shrimp have been on their backs and twitching and wiggling their legs. I thought they were having trouble molting or maybe they hadn't been getting enough food since one of the other shrimp is a bit of a pig.

The first one started doing this a few days ago, I noticed Friday night. It looked like some of his friends thought he was dead and were trying to eat him so I put him in a small cup by himself with water from the tank and some food. He seemed to get a little better and then worse.

Then yesterday, another one started doing it on and off so I was going to take the same approach but then she looked like she got better so I didn't. A couple hours later she looked as bad as her brother but I was busy trying to figure out how to get an oto out of an adf's mouth (I promise my tanks are usually not this much of a disaster, it's just my luck that everything bad happens at once).

This morning, the second shrimp was dead and the original hadn't improved so I cleaned the tank after reading something about copper pipes being bad? Then I put the shrimp back in since his individual cup water was then worse than the whole tank's. Not sure if that was a good idea or not.

One of the other shrimp in the tank is pregnant and she seems perfectly fine as does the other male, although he is swimming around a lot more than usual but I'm not sure if that is because of poor water or because there is a berried shrimp in the tank. The eggs are pretty big though at this point and he hasn't been doing that for very long.

I have no idea what kind of shrimp they are, they are at least part ghost, they are black, brown and clear in color and one has a bit of a bluish tint. The tank is 1 gallon and I don't have a way of testing the parameters. There is no filter or heater but I do a 1/3 ish water change every 2 weeks.

The same thing happened to my oldest shrimp about a month ago and she died, but I thought it was just old age. She was the oldest shrimp and had already laid eggs once so I figured she was just frail and aging, especially since it reminded me of a seizure and none of the other shrimp were acting weird.
 

Crimson_687

Member
I’m sorry to say this, but the entire tank is bound to fail.

A 1 gallon, due to its small size, is extremely unstable. The slightest change in temperature or parameters will kill a shrimp. Smaller tanks are especially prone to changes.

If your tank does not have a filter, there is no surface agitation, meaning your shrimp are likely to suffocate. Additionally, majority of beneficial bacteria live in your filter. This is where filter media is. You said you are feeding your shrimp, this means there is a lot of waste in your tank. Overtime this waste will only buildup. Especially because you have had shrimp die, this will also dangerously spike parameters in a small tank. Not having a heater is fine, so long as your temp is stable and within range, but filter is a must to keep shrimp alive. Although some beneficial bacteria live in substrate, that population is not sufficient enough to maintain good water chemistry. Ammonia will still be present, which is highly toxic to shrimp. When they shed, they become more vulnerable to poor water quality.

You need a test kit to know if your tank is cycled, and especially with smaller tanks, you need to monitor your parameters. You also need to know your gH kH and TDS. These don’t usually change, they should be in your water quality report. You need to know these to determine if your shrimp will be able to shed.

I suspect your shrimp are dying due to a combination of tank instability, lack of aireation, overfeeding, and poor water quality. I would up your water changes to 30% DAILY (Larger WCs will shock your shrimp) just to keep the water clean enough for them to live in, and get a filter, live plants, and a bigger tank, so they will be able to thrive. You also don’t need to feed them that much. In as established tank they will eat biofilm and algae. Since your tank is not yet established you may need to supplement, but for 4 shrimp a TINY amount. Remove anything uneaten or it will foul water
 

richiep

Member
I was in the middle of typing out with one finger something similar to Crimson_687 when she posted i deleted my post, if I was you get yourself a 10g and start a good colony going, there's plenty of us to help you if uou need it
 
  • Thread Starter

Kedeen

Member
Thanks for the tips! I can definitely clean the tank more often and you're probably right that i may be overfeeding. I'm working on getting a test kit, is the API freshwater master test kit a good one? I'm looking on Amazon right now and it says it measure pH, high range pH, ammonia, nitrate,and nitrite. I definitely can't get a bigger tank and I don't think a filter could be small enough to fit since the tank is kind of oddly shaped. Also, this tank has been stable, no deaths, for months so I don't know why that would suddenly change now
 

richiep

Member
Kedeen said:
Thanks for the tips! I can definitely clean the tank more often and you're probably right that i may be overfeeding. I'm working on getting a test kit, is the API freshwater master test kit a good one? I'm looking on Amazon right now and it says it measure pH, high range pH, ammonia, nitrate,and nitrite. I definitely can't get a bigger tank and I don't think a filter could be small enough to fit since the tank is kind of oddly shaped. Also, this tank has been stable, no deaths, for months so I don't know why that would suddenly change now
When you first put shrimp the tank was good and healthy but with these small tanks unless you keep on top of things a few months down the road it all starts to go wrong and most dont understand why, water quality is one killer you've not been replenishing good minerals so basically goes off, the fact theres no filter enhances the problem,
We've not seen any photos to see if the shrimp are diseased so this again should be posted, try and give closeup photos of whats left, not being able to check your gh,kh,ph,ammonia is another reason to kill shrimp and this again would have been changing over the past months, so for a small tank there's a lot going on, we also need to find out what type of shrimp you have because there's no such thing a a part ghost, you say that one shrimp as had young ,have you seen any,
 

Crimson_687

Member
Kedeen said:
Thanks for the tips! I can definitely clean the tank more often and you're probably right that i may be overfeeding. I'm working on getting a test kit, is the API freshwater master test kit a good one? I'm looking on Amazon right now and it says it measure pH, high range pH, ammonia, nitrate,and nitrite. I definitely can't get a bigger tank and I don't think a filter could be small enough to fit since the tank is kind of oddly shaped. Also, this tank has been stable, no deaths, for months so I don't know why that would suddenly change now
The API master kit is fine. As for filtration, have you looked into sponge filters? they are shrimp-safe and they’ll fit in a 1g.

For a bigger tank, you can look at petco, they sell tanks separate and you can then use your own equipment. They have $ per gallon sales as well. If, for whatever reason, you need a plastic tank or easy to move tank they also have imagitarium plastic tanks with lids, they are advertised as “pet carriers” or “temporary habitats.” The largest size is about 5.3 gallons at $12. Though a 10g would be more stable, it’s than a 1 gallon.
 
  • Thread Starter

Kedeen

Member
idk if this will help ID these shrimp, but I had a shrimp in my 2.7 gallon betta tank and went to petco and got 2 more. They were displayed as "rainbow" since they had inbred so much you couldn't tell what type they were actually supposed to be (or at least that's what I figured since the pet store people didn't know how to price them and called them that because they weren't all clear). I got one of them already berried by accident and she dropped the eggs somewhere in the tank. Then the betta killed one of the shrimp so i had to evacuate the 2 survivors which happened to be the new ones. they stayed in a plastickitchen container until I could order a new tank off of amazon and at that point I had to pick the smallest tank because it was cheap and would deliver on time and my parents said I had too many pets and I had to put it somewhere. then a couple months later I look over and there's a baby shrimp in the betta tank so once they got a little bigger, we evacuated the whole litter(11) into 2 1 gallon tanks. Now, one of those babies (adult now though) is berried and I have no clue who the dad is, it could be her brother or the other original shrimp. So basically this tank was sort of emergency started and the background of the shrimp is sort of a mystery. I'm not sure if this helps but the eggs are a dark brown/green. And I think that generation 2 is part ghost shrimp because some had that humpback thing, like where the tail sort of forms a triangle at one point? sorry I don't really know how to describe it

The lighting at this time is really bad but I can probably find an older picture and send a new one when you can actually see the shrimp well enough for it to help
 

Crimson_687

Member
Kedeen said:
idk if this will help ID these shrimp, but I had a shrimp in my 2.7 gallon betta tank and went to petco and got 2 more. They were displayed as "rainbow" since they had inbred so much you couldn't tell what type they were actually supposed to be (or at least that's what I figured since the pet store people didn't know how to price them and called them that because they weren't all clear). I got one of them already berried by accident and she dropped the eggs somewhere in the tank. Then the betta killed one of the shrimp so i had to evacuate the 2 survivors which happened to be the new ones. they stayed in a plastickitchen container until I could order a new tank off of amazon and at that point I had to pick the smallest tank because it was cheap and would deliver on time and my parents said I had too many pets and I had to put it somewhere. then a couple months later I look over and there's a baby shrimp in the betta tank so once they got a little bigger, we evacuated the whole litter(11) into 2 1 gallon tanks. Now, one of those babies (adult now though) is berried and I have no clue who the dad is, it could be her brother or the other original shrimp. So basically this tank was sort of emergency started and the background of the shrimp is sort of a mystery. I'm not sure if this helps but the eggs are a dark brown/green. And I think that generation 2 is part ghost shrimp because some had that humpback thing, like where the tail sort of forms a triangle at one point? sorry I don't really know how to describe it

The lighting at this time is really bad but I can probably find an older picture and send a new one when you can actually see the shrimp well enough for it to help
Ghost shrimp don’t breed with neos, and all colors of neo shrimp are still neo shrimp, they just have different grades. Larger females can have a humpback appearance, that’s normal. Your location may be different, but it’s unlikely they keep ghosts and neos in the same tank if they are responsible, as it is possible, though unlikely, for ghost shrimp to eat neo shrimp. Shrimp are one of their bestsellers (they’re also getting in a growing line of shrimp products, most of which aren’t that great but that’s another topic) so I doubt they would be irresponsible with them. At petco they advertise them as “rainbow shrimp” because their provider sends different colors, but they are all neos. Yes, it’s possible that different color neos will breed, but they are all neos. It doesn’t necessarily mean they are inbred. Also the offspring do not always come out wild type when different colors breed, some will come out the original color. As for egg color, green, yellow, brown-black is all normal. Egg color does not determine the color of the babies and the eggs may change to a brownish color as the shrimplets develop inside.
 
  • Thread Starter

Kedeen

Member
Crimson_687 said:
Ghost shrimp don’t breed with neos, and all colors of neo shrimp are still neo shrimp, they just have different grades. Larger females can have a humpback appearance, that’s normal. Your location may be different, but it’s unlikely they keep ghosts and neos in the same tank if they are responsible, as it is possible, though unlikely, for ghost shrimp to eat neo shrimp. Shrimp are one of their bestsellers (they’re also getting in a growing line of shrimp products, most of which aren’t that great but that’s another topic) so I doubt they would be irresponsible with them. At petco they advertise them as “rainbow shrimp” because their provider sends different colors, but they are all neos. Yes, it’s possible that different color neos will breed, but they are all neos. It doesn’t necessarily mean they are inbred. Also the offspring do not always come out wild type when different colors breed, some will come out the original color. As for egg color, green, yellow, brown-black is all normal. Egg color does not determine the color of the babies and the eggs may change to a brownish color as the shrimplets develop inside.
Okay, that’s really helpful! Thanks so much! I found some old pictures. Another odd thing I noticed is that over the past few months, their coloring changed, they mainly got darker. Is that normal?
 

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