View Full Version : I Give Up on Shrimp

12-09-2011, 01:39 AM
Well, i dont know why, but all of my cherries have died. I fed them once a week, i took the snail out if i wanted to feed him so that his food didnt pollute their water, parameters were good, pH was 7.4, amm-0, trite-0, trates- somewhere between 10-20. But the last one just died today. So im just going to let the plants in there grow big and strong and maybe put my bettas in there with a divider. Why is shrimp-keeping so much harder than fish keeping? It angers me. That was after the filter and heater and shrimp and everything about $100 plus all my time, and it all went to nothing. I dont know how you guys do it. :(

12-09-2011, 02:26 AM
How new was the tank?

Shrimp graze constantly on biofilm. Like, non stop. Adding food is fine, but no replacement for a tank that is properly aged. If the tank isn't a year old or more, then adding food only once a week starved them. Especially if there were no other animals in the tank that were fed and they picked up the scraps for.

Those who start up their shrimp tanks and add shrimp immediately also tend to feed their shrimp daily, or every other day until they get established adjusting the rate as needed. If the shrimp are voracious, FEED THEM. They are not like fish. They will leave what they cannot eat.

Also, RCS are not amanos. They eat algae wafers but do not relish them. They prefer meatier pellets if they are fed.

Also, no need to take the snail out at all. Shrimp will happily eat poop. So leave the snail in and feed the tank.

12-09-2011, 11:14 AM
I haven't done anything special for my RCS. I have them in 2 of my tanks and they are both less than 4 month old tanks. They seem to be healthy. I see them eating, hanging off plants, so I guess I am doing ok with them. I also have a lot of ghost shrimp and as far as I can tell - they are doing fine, too. Don't give up!

12-09-2011, 12:46 PM
I"ll agree with Pamela here - I have 4 amano shrimp - added them before my tank was 6mos old - they will eat algae wafers, catfish pellets & blood worms that fall to the bottom. I got them because they are larger than my fish so I knew they wouldn't become meals : )

12-09-2011, 01:58 PM
I'll clarify since I was asked in PM ...

It is perfectly possible to add RCS to a tank that is less than a year old. The tank has to be fed more than once a week, though.


CRS are a different story, depending on what grade they are and whom you get them from ... some folks can keep CRS w/o any issues ... some find them twitchy and delicate.

12-11-2011, 01:50 PM
I suspect that most of the time when folks have cherry reds fade away there is something in the water parameters that causes it. It can be something that plants and fish tolerate very well so the keeper believes all should be well. I suggest then to change the water source. My first cherry reds faltered using well water, even though tropical and pond fish have done well for years. My well water is from a deep well, water tests good but it is very high in corbonates and iron compounds. Probably tiny trace amounts of natural arsenic, deemed safe for humans, which is fairly common in well waters. On top of that, it runs through copper pipes. So I went to rain water, using a complete mineral and an iron/potassium suppliment. With that the shrimp population exploded and the plants even grow twice as fast.
If there is algae growing in the tank, and you feed every other day, the shrimp are getting plenty. It's easy to overfeed, I only feed an amount they can clean up in a half day.
My shrimp don't know about not liking algae chips. I feed mine Aquarian algae chips (that they claim has additives for a growth formula) exclusively, they clean up 2 chips every other day. They would every day but then they don't control algae growth in the tank enough. The few times I tried dried shrimp food or tubifex they ate it well enough but the water quality suffered and I needed more water changes, even though they ate it all. I suspect proteins dissolved from the rich food into the water.

Lady Hobbs
12-11-2011, 03:13 PM
I have shrimp all over the place just from moving driftwood and plants from tank to tank. They're in the blood parrot tank swimming about, in a 55 and also a 29 planted. I'm sure some are getting eaten because I'm not over run with them but I would guess a couple hundred are around.

I feed shrimp and algae pellets a couple times a week in additon to the flake and pellet food the fish get daily. I would like to get some Excel but not sure they will survive dosing with Excel so have been on the fence dosing with it.

Orange Crush
12-11-2011, 10:21 PM
They need food more than once a week. Also shrimp are super sensitive to water peramiters. 10-20 nitrAtes is way too much for them to do well. They prefer close to none. <5 is best. Do more water changes and feed more often and you should have no problems.

Orange Crush
12-11-2011, 10:23 PM
Lady hobbs,
I dose with excell every other day for my plants (1mL/10gal). If you ever notice your fish or shrimp acting erratic after dosing just do a water change and they will get back to normal pretty quick but I have never had to do that.

12-12-2011, 12:58 AM
I have one survivor after all of this. One tiny little baby that the berried female that i had bought a week before death had. Which is amazing because she had dropped all of her eggs to die, and somehow he didnt. Plus i had turned off heat thinking there were no more... My manager is interested in my fish-keeping, so i told him id name the shrimp Dan, after him. :) For a tiny baby is it better to feed fish flakes (checked, copper and copper-sulfate free), or an algae wafer? Since only one survived im taking down the shrimp tank, and putting in an opaque divider and turning it into a split betta/frog/apple snail tank. :) Dan will live in the ex-betta tank. Probably the smaller one because he doesnt need much room. Ill get him/her a companion when i figure out gender. He/shes a survivor. Maybe i will feed it the sinking frog pellets since the frogs would rather eat the betta food anyway...

Orange Crush
12-12-2011, 01:15 AM
I think sinking wafers would be better since you know they are not going to be sucked into the filter before he could get them. Considering you are having a problem with them dying I would recommend getting at least a few rather than 1 if you are still wanting the chance for them to breed. Make sure that the frog and betta cannot get to him. You could try ordering from The Shrimp Farm online, several months ago I got 30 cherry shrimp for $40 including S&H. They all were alive when I got them and they have been breeding like crazy.

12-12-2011, 02:12 AM
Shrimp Farms where i got these guys from. I had 4 from the store, and bought 30 from Shrimp Farm. Then a month later, massacre one. I had 6 shrimps left. Then i bought a berried female from the store to try to bring the numbers back up without spending so much money again. Now all of them are dead except little Dan... Who doesnt look that god either. :( If he survives i was planning on putting him in the tank the betta and frog are in now after the betta gets out of that tank to go in the larger one. But if Dan dies i dont think ill be starting a new colony for a while. Now i know what must've killed them all. Not enough food. If i do it again ill feed more often. :)

Orange Crush
12-12-2011, 02:31 AM
Could be the nitrates too. They do not like any nitrates in the water....

12-12-2011, 04:04 AM
This has been my experience too. They just die, slowly, one by one.

From reading the responses here and elsewhere, I've come to the conclusion that if you have shrimp, you dont have plants. By that I mean, no CO2 injection, no high/med light, no ferts, which pretty much means low light, low tech.

Is this correct?

Orange Crush
12-12-2011, 04:59 AM
I have only live plants in all of my tanks, 2 of which have shrimp.
In one tank I use ferts and flourish excel. I am careful not to overdose with either of these. My cherry breed a lot and my 3 filter shrimp are quite healthy.
In the other I use ferts and DIY CO2. I have not been as sucessful with my shrimp in this tank i.e. they do not breed.
You just have to be careful with what you are doing that's all.
I do believe it is best to keep shrimp with live plants because the plants suck up ammonia and nitrates, I almost never have to water changes and my nitrate level is consistantly <5.
If you are concerned avout the ferts/CO2 get plants that require low lighting and no CO2 like java fern, java moss and anubas.

12-12-2011, 05:38 AM
I have rapidly breeding cherries and the nitrates are currently sitting around 40ppm. No deaths and new babies appearing constantly Tank hasnt been waterchanged since setup in Oct.
They are far more hardy then many think
The tank they are in is heavily planted, Java fern, Java moss, Peacock moss, Anubias and Val
The temp is around 22C, a bit higher now as we are coming into summer, they dont like it too warm so hopefully i can get them through.

I have pics in the photo section of the tank if you are interested.

Orange Crush
12-12-2011, 05:54 AM
Hmmm, maybe then her shrimp were just starving to death :scry:

12-12-2011, 06:54 AM
I do feed mine a lot

Some come down for a feed (this is by no means all that is in the tank)

Mine get algae disks (above photo), next time shrimp pellets, then fish flakes. i put enough in to last them a day at least, they do not get the next batch until all is gone. They get 1 day of nothing, this day the browse the plants and turnover the sand and pick up anything left over. I've gone from 150 in Oct to, well there would be around a thousand (at least) in Dec, in the 2 months some have been moved into another tank, some fed to my fish, and i am in no danger of running out anytime soon.

Orange Crush
12-12-2011, 07:30 AM
I can see why your nitrAtes are around 40ppm with all those wafers! seems like a litle bit too much food dont ya think? thumbs2:

12-12-2011, 07:37 AM
No i dont think its too much at all, there are also some peppermint BN in there. Nitrates are no issue with the shrimp anyway, and they are that high because it hasnt had a waterchange for 2 months.

That food is generally gone in a day, you are not seeing the amount of shrimp in that tank, its 50gal plastered with cherries lol

works for me, my shrimp are multiplying at a massive rate

12-12-2011, 05:51 PM
Wow, thats a lot of shrimps in your tank Alasse! Well this little shrimp Dan died too, i dont see why this time because i fed him as soon as i saw there were babes and then i moved him into a fish bowl for the night as i was switching tanks, and i let temp rise up to 78 by floating the bowl in the fish tank. When i woke up, he was dead. :( Next time i do shrimps ill go to Shrimp Farm again and feed them much more often (somebody told me before i was overfeeding especially since i had algae in tank, thats why i inadvetently starved them all) and watch nitrates much better and go easy on fertilizing y plants, and then hopefully they will survive. :) Ill use my now empty 2.5gal for them and just have a small colony.

Lady Hobbs
12-12-2011, 08:07 PM
I'm getting far more brown ones than red ones the last year. Tank is loaded with the ugly brown ones. Not sure what that's about.

12-12-2011, 10:13 PM
maybe a non-cherry snuck in somehow. I know i was originally going to mix blueberries and cherries to get grapes. XD But then i was told id just get the brown ones if i did that.

12-12-2011, 10:18 PM
and i let temp rise up to 78 by floating the bowl in the fish tank.
Drop the temp down to around 21-22C (70-72F). I've found they do better at cooler temperatures

12-12-2011, 10:47 PM
I'm getting far more brown ones than red ones the last year. Tank is loaded with the ugly brown ones. Not sure what that's about.

The brown ones are the semi-dominant / wild color. Females will throw those every so often. You want to keep your colony predominantly "red" you need to cull those.