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JSak

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JSak last won the day on March 9

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About JSak

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    Advanced Member

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  • Real Name
    Jordan
  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Columbus, OH
  • Inverts You Keep
    Neos, Caridinas, Sulawesi Cardinals, Rabbit Snails, Ramshorn Snails, MTS, and Dwarf Mexican Lobsters

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  1. Hi skoomz! One thing I think of with tap water is the possibility of chlorine/chloramine in the water because most test kits don't test for those. Chlorine and chloramine are highly toxic to shrimp and can kill them pretty quickly. Also, your local water treatment plant may be adding chemicals into the water that may be affecting your shrimp as well. The only reason I think this when I hear tap water is because I used tap water when I first started the hobby, but once I switched to remineralized RO water I had much more success. Your gh and kh does seem high, but I've heard that the taiwanese breeders also keep their water extremely hard with their neos so I'm not too sure if that's the reason. How long have you had the shrimp?
  2. I keep all of mine at room temp aside from my cardinal sulawesis that require more specific parameters. I try to keep my hobby as simple as possible for myself and for the shrimp as well. I've heard horror stories of heaters malfunctioning which could either cause it to shut off and drop the temp or constantly remain on and boil the shrimp. Even if it's not that likely, I didn't think it was worth the risk considering the shrimp would do just fine in room temp. I have about 15 or so tanks of neos, caridina and paracaridina and they all are doing very well and breeding for me just at room temp which I'm guessing can range from 68-75 F. As stated earlier, higher temps increase the shrimp's metabolism, so they grow faster, breed faster, and also die faster. I keep green jade neos with my cardinal sulawesis in a tank that's set at roughly 80-85 F and I've noticed that the neos are significantly smaller than the other neos I have that are kept at room temp. I've heard that high temps can cause the shrimps to not grow as large and at least in my experience that seems to be the case. But again, this is based on my research and personal experiences so if it's working for you I'd say stick with it. One of the mottos I try to keep with shrimp keeping is "if it ain't broke don't fix it".
  3. I haven't tried any other remineralizing salt, but I've been using Salty Shrimp GH+ for my Caridina and GH/KH+ for my neos in the 5+ years I've been in this hobby with lots of success. As uuaaayyy stated, there are different sizes of the remineralizer you can buy. I bought the 450g one for about $20 on Amazon and I still have about 1/3 of it left after buying it about 5 months ago. How often you do water changes and how much water you take out also dictates how quickly you go through it. For me, I do water changes once a month taking out about 10% each time. I use 5 gallon buckets of RO water and add about 3/4 scoop to each bucket. I have 7 10 gallon tanks and 1 20 gallon tank with caridina in them, so it can last you a while. That being said, I've also heard good things about Brightwell Caridina GH+, which is a liquid remineralizer. I've never used it, but Rob from Flip Aquatics supports it and I've learned almost everything I know about shrimp keeping from him so I take his advice/opinions with high regards. I believe he did mention that it's more dilute so although it may be easier to dose and possibly cheaper, you'll likely run out of it faster if you have large volumes of water you need to remineralize. For me, if I'm spending a lot of money on the actual shrimps, especially caridina since they're pretty pricey, I try to spend a little extra to ensure that they'll have the best chance to live and breed. I've had solid results from Salty Shrimp remineralizers, it appears to have been in the hobby for a very long time, and many hobbyists/breeders/youtubers use it, which to me shows that it's an effective product. I'm the type of person who likes to go with the consistent products that have the most support, especially when dealing with live animals. I've tried to go with cheaper alternatives for different things in my shrimp tanks and have paid the price for them. Not to say I won't jump at a cheaper product/option if it's available and shown to be effective (this is definitely an expensive hobby so I can understand trying to save) but for me, what it always comes down to is risk vs reward. Is the savings you get from one product worth the risk of going with the more expensive but consistent product? That's what I also ask myself when I see shrimps I want for a cheaper price from a site I've never ordered from before (also paid the price for that mistake). Hope this helps!
  4. Hey @Danky808! I have to ask but are you from Hawaii? Recognize the 808 🤙 Welcome to the hobby! Most of us here are glad to provide any information based on our knowledge and/or experience, so feel free to ask anytime! I used to be into fish for a while, but once I discovered shrimp and especially after I started to figure out how to keep and breed them, I couldn't go back to fish. They're so unique, relatively unknown in the aquarium hobby (although it seems like they're finally starting to get the recognition I think they deserve), and require very little maintenance and tank space. What kind of neos do you have?
  5. I'm not sure if the backline is specifically a grade standard, but personally I like the color distinction with the backline. I've seen wild shrimp in streams that were dark brown/blueish with a pretty prominent backline so it might have some genetic roots to the ancestral wild-type neos. I'm sure there are breeders/sellers online that have neos without the backline or you may be able to ask on forums like this for breeders who specifically have neos without the backline that breed relatively true. I don't buy shrimp from pet stores anymore, but if most of them have it I'd have to guess that they're just more popular than shrimp without the backline. Pet stores will go with what's most popular and is more likely to bring in money. If you have a good enough relationship with your stores maybe you can ask them about possibly bringing in neos without the backline? If you'd like to do it the old fashioned way, you could buy the ones with backlines and as they breed select for the ones without the backline or ones with a less prominent backline, either by placing them in a separate tank or removing the ones with the backline (since your local stores sell the ones with backlines I'd think they'd be happy to take your backline neos that you don't want). As you keep selectively breeding for the shrimp that don't have the backline or is less prominent the backline should disappear over the generations and eventually you can have a colony of neos without the backline that will hopefully breed relatively true. I'd find it hard to believe there's any shrimp that breeds 100% true so you might get backlines every now and then but you can always give those away.
  6. I agree with @uuaaayyy about going with remineralized RO water over tap water for caridina shrimp, especially pintos and Taiwan bees, so that you can control the water parameters can keep them consistent. I didn’t see you mention using tap water though so maybe I missed it. In terms of your plan, I think it’s a good idea! Neos seem to be very hardy and adaptable, especially if you’ve been raising them up for a while, so if you can slowly acclimate them they should have a better chance to thrive. Neos and caridina don’t interbreed as far as I know so you don’t have to worry about that. You also have the right idea about keeping the parameters closer to what the pintos want since they’re more sensitive to parameters and more expensive. Another suggestion is you could split your blue dream colony in half and keep one half in their old tank and add the other half into the tank for the pintos. This way if anything happens to the ones in the pinto tank you still have a “reserve colony”. One thing to consider though is that if you’re planning to use a buffering substrate (Amazonia, Fluval Stratum, Brightwell Aquasoil, etc.) if you have any KH in the water it’ll deplete the soil’s buffering capacity, essentially shortening it’s duration of effect. I saw you’re thinking of starting with neo parameters and working down to caridina parameters which is why I brought this up. I believe that buffering substrate is very important to a caridina tank and they can be expensive so that’s something you might want to consider as well. All that being said, it’s your hobby so you should do what gets you excited about the hobby. I have OERBT’s that came from a breeder who kept them in caridina parameters, but I wanted to put them in my neo tank to make the most use of my tank space. I drip acclimated them for about 8 hours since their parameters Were pretty different than the tank I was putting them in and they’re still doing well for me. So I’d think if you slowly acclimate them over several weeks/months they should have a good chance.
  7. Yup looks like biofilm to me! Just the natural process of adding a new piece of driftwood to your tank. It happens everytime I add them to my tanks as well. It should go away over time 👍
  8. I’m not sure if I understand, but I don’t do anything special to my water when I’m cycling it vs. when I have shrimp in the tank. I use RO/DI water remineralizer with either Salty Shrimp GH+ or GH/KH+ to achieve the water parameters for the specific type of shrimp I’m planning to put in (cardinal vs neocaridina) and let it cycle with that water. This way the bacteria and microorganisms that grow in my tank develop in the parameters for the shrimp I’m planning to put in the tank. I try to keep things in my tank as consistent and stable as possible, even during the cycling process. Hope that helps but maybe I’m misunderstanding your question. If so, could you tell me the youtubers that you watched who said this? I watch most of the popular shrimp tubers and learned basically everything I know about shrimp keeping from them.
  9. That’s actually biofilm, which are microorganisms that typically grow on surfaces that’re rich in nutrients. Whenever I add a new piece of driftwood I get that biofilm as well. From my understanding it’s a good thing for a tank and can help promote the normal cycling process by promoting growth of microorganisms and beneficial bacteria. It should go away in a couple weeks but if you have shrimp they’ll most likely devour it.
  10. Sorry it took so long to get back to you. It's been a busy couple of weeks with moving and exams 😓 but yes, that's how the test works. It's called a titration reaction. I used to remember exactly how the reaction worked, but that was back in undergrad when I was taking my chem classes so I won't try to explain it 😂 but just to be sure, did you cap and invert the tubes each time you added a drop of the GH or KH solution, rather than adding a few drops then mixing it together? GH is generally higher than KH, but one instance when KH can be higher than GH is if sodium bicarbonate is added because GH primarily measures calcium carbonate in the water, whereas KH measures the amount of carbonates in the water (carbonate hardness). I apologize if I mentioned it already, but one of the primary reasons I don't use tap water is because the city controls what's added to the water so my shrimp and I are basically at the mercy of whatever they decide to put in/treat the water with. I'm sure neos would be fine and able to adapt to those parameters. Just make sure you get them from a good source and acclimate them properly 👍
  11. First picture looks like a male and the last 2 pictures look like females. The yellow thing on the back of the last 2 shrimp is called a saddle and is a classic characteristic of female shrimps. The first shrimp lacks the saddle and also has a straighter abdomen/stomach area compared to the 2 shrimp in the last picture, which is more suggestive of a male.
  12. It looks like a wild-type neocaridina to me. Same species as the red cherries you have. If it breeds with your cherries you may get more babies that look like that one rather than looking like the cherries you have.
  13. Hi @bruce7267ad! Both cherries and blue velvets are neocaridina shrimp, so they have the same parameter requirements. Neocaridina are generally pretty hardy and tolerant of a wide range of water parameters, but they tend to like harder/more alkaline water. I keep my neocaridina in water with GH about 10 and KH about 3-4. I don't use a heater or anything like that in their tanks so my water temperature fluctuates based on room temp, but I'd guess it's probably between 68-75 depending on the weather and time of year. The only thing I measure is GH and KH as I've found those are the most important parameters aside from ammonia, nitrate and nitrite. Above all I find shrimps in general like consistency, so as long as you give them time to adapt to your water using a gradual acclimation process (I always drip acclimate my shrimp) and keep water parameters relatively consistent with water changes they should do fine 👍 Hope that helps!
  14. Hi @NSinvert! Just to clarify, when you say you're changing your water once a week with RO water, are you changing the water with pure RO water or are you remineralizing first before changing? If so, how long have you had the shrimp? Just like with people and other pets like dogs and cats, as animals age they tend to show visible signs of these changes. If you were to look at an older dog vs. a young adult dog the younger dog, if healthy, would have a nicer hair coat, much more vibrant coat colors, and healthier looking skin, compared to an older dog who may have more dull coat colors, more skin problems, etc. They may both be healthy but due to the aging process they look visibly different. Shrimp can be like this as well. The nicest shrimps are usually the ones that have just reached mature size, so they're in their breeding prime and generally show their best colors. Your parameters seem fine and it sounds like you've had this schedule (feeding, water changes, etc.) going on for a while, so if you've been consistent I don't think they'd suddenly start becoming stressed unless you added/changed something recently. It also seems like you have experience keeping shrimps, so my guess is that they're just aging and losing color because of that. But if you can think of anything that changed recently that might be helpful to identify why it may be happening. Hope this helps!
  15. @FaelynK yup! Prime has sodium thiosulfate in it which deactivates both chlorines and chloramines so I'd definitely suggest using that if possible. Aeration only gets rid of chlorine but not chloramine so that's a good point that you brought up. Yea the neos these days, especially cherries, are way more durable and adaptable than they were several years ago with the recent popularity and rise of the shrimp hobby and with cherries being the most available and well-known of the dwarf shrimps. If you're able to, I suggest finding a local or USA breeder as they're generally more healthy and can adapt best to the changes of being introduced to a different tank. RO water with remineralizers definitely aren't necessary for neos, but generally highly recommended.
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