what do i need to know?

tan.b

Member
got some ghost shrimps today. have had a look about for some info on them, but not found much!!

do they need any thing special like supplements or anything? in the tanks they're in they'll get flakes and algae wafers anyway cos that's what the other fish need. do they need anything else?

also, I know meds + invertebrates = death, but what about plant fertiliser? on the box it just says don't use in saltwater aquariums. doesn't mention invert's. :-\

anything else I need to know about them to keep them happy and hopefully alive?!
 

wolfman21

Member
Make sure when they molt that they are getting their exoskeletons back. They need calcium to get that back. I don't know what your water is like, if it is more city water with calcium and such or if it is well water. Either way, I would drop in a couple seashells because they will release calcium carbonate into the water, and that's just what the ghost shrimp need for proper exoskeleton growth. If they turn white after they molt instead of their regular glass-color, then they have not regrown a new exoskeleton. In that case, quarantine them and try putting the seashells in with them and feed them hermit crab pellets. They contain calcium needed for proper exoskeleton growth. Otherwise eating wise, they will eat the algae wafers and especially the flakes which float to the bottom. If they are hungry enough, they will swim to the top and attempt to grab food right away-mine have done that with bloodworms, guess they like the taste! As for the chemicals, they are bad, and I don't know about plant fertilizers, but probably not a good idea, because ghost shrimp are very susceptible to any chamicals and changes in water changes. Good luck!
 
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tan.b

Member
thanks for that wolfman21! funnily enough in one of the tanks I have a shell cos I put the algae wafer in it, then if the snails swarm in to get it, I remove the shell complete with snails!! the shell then gets a dunk in boiling water to make sure any snail eggs are destroyed before re-introducing to the tank! will get some more soon. my dad lives near the beach, so next time i'm there I'll go scavenging! our tap water is moderately hard. did test on it last yr with a test strip I got with my dishwasher (random I know?!) and that said it was quite hard, but we don't have problem with limescale anywhere like where I used to live! a few shells can't hurt just to be sure! how often do they moult? shame about the fertiliser though! the plants are looking quite healthy at the mo so prob don't need them anyway. I bought it when they started looking a bit worse for wear and have continued to use it since!
Tan
 

wolfman21

Member
It all depends on how often they molt. They grow faster at some points, adn molt when they need to. A lot of times they will eat their old exoskeleton to get some of the nutrients out of it for new growth. Another thing I forgot to mention was to make sure you keep an eye on the iodine level. They need iodine to grow back a new exoskeleton. There should be enough in the water, but if they turn white after they molt even when you have seashells in the tank, then drop in some iodine. This can be bought at your lfs. Good luck with all of that!
 
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tan.b

Member
thanks for that! I never even knew iodine was in tap water or that it had any uses outside of of a surgical theatre!!! the things I learn on this site! will keep an eye on them. well try too....they spend a lot of time hiding! I thought they'd be scuttling about all the time! takes a few minutes finding my plec as he hides, then even longer looking for a see through tiny creatures! at least the plec is getting bigger and he's black! one of my shrimps I haven't seen for a while. hopefully just hiding and not dead. don't want to disturb the anubia on the rock which they hide in and under incase I inadvertantly squash the shrimp or frighten it to death. lets hope he turns up alive and well! if he has died i'm sure the loach or other shrimp will have gobbled him up so I wouldnt even find a body . do all shrimps hide so much? or is it just while they settle in to their new home?
thanks again
tan
 

wolfman21

Member
Shrimp do hide a lot. They can sometimes hide for up to a week at a time and you may never see them during that time period. What kind of substrate do you have in your tank? is is sand, small gravel? if it is small enough, they may have dug a little burrow and hid in it. They especially like to hide after they molt because they are highly suceptible to water quality and especially predators at that time, so they like to hunker down until they have their new exoskeleton. If you have a lot of places for them to hide, then they will take advantage of that. I bet yours isn't dead-just hiding. Soon enough he'll poke out and be out and about. The ones I have like to hide also. I used to have a couple that were little explorers, and I would see them scurrying around. have fun and good luck.
 
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tan.b

Member
yeah, good news! seen both of them today!! in the small tank its fine gravel, in the bigger tank its larger gravel. been looking for burrows in the small tank, but my shrimp must be lazy as haven't spotted any yet!!! in the small tank I have an anubia on a rock and as the leaves hang down low they provide a perfect hideaway for them!! so I figured that's why they can't be bothered to dig!! will get some caves for in there as the anubia is the only shelter they have at the mo. if any babies of theirs survive I hope they're of the exploring kind!! in the bigger tank they hide under the plecs log. there's loads of hiding places in that tank, they just choose the same one every time!!
 

wolfman21

Member
Glad you found the hiding ones. In the bigger tank, they sound like they have lots of potential places to hide, and I'm sure they'll take advantage of that. Same as the small tank. They may not have dug burrows, maybe they're just hiding in plants or other places. Burrows may be small, though, depending how deep your gravel is. May just be a little opening for them to squeeze into and then they'll develop their burrow under the top gravel layers. They sure are interesting little guys.
 
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tan.b

Member
they are facinating!...if only they hid less!!! one of them came out earlier and her eggs have gone, so whether they are safely hidden somewhere or in another fishes tummy I don't know!!!!!!!!! anyway, she munched this huge bit of food by rolling it in her many hands and nibbling at it. how they co-ordinate all those I'll never know!!!!!
 

wolfman21

Member
I know they're so cool! They are so coordinated and curious little guys. I just got 3 more today for the tank I have for all my guppy babies, and one of them has been chasing the fry around the tank trying to catch one all day! He's so funny to watch. And then one has simply been eating all night-guess he's hungry. I agree, though. They are great little critters.
 
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