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Advice on Bacter AE please ?


Purplepanda
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My taiwan bee tank has been doing fine and after a couple of months have the first young about so really chuffed with some great little shadow pandas, king kongs and wine reds. A brief description of the tank, the substrate is volcanic pebbles below 40mm of  ADA, I'm using sponge and a canister filter so plenty of filtration and aeration, it's heavily planted with pellia, fissidens and moss. I currently have about twenty bees in the 140L tank so low density.  

 

For some reason I kept on thinking there was something missing in the tank, the bees were active but not over the top.. so I ordered some Bacter AE, thinking perhaps this was the missing ingredient the tank needed and given the great reviews and popularity of this product. After a month long wait it finally arrived from abroad and with great excitement and anticipation I dosed the tank just after lights out. I thought I would rather be cautious so did not feed/dose the full recommended amount.  I had visions of the shrimps going nuts about the stuff and becoming hyper active all over the tank and with feasting on all the biofilm it supposedly generates. However by the following day most of the shrimp had vanished and were hiding. I spied a few under the plants and they seemed to be feeding and there were still some young about, but the majority of the shrimp I have not seen for a couple of days now. I have not seen any bodies yet either so I'm really hoping they are all still ok. Any advice as to what might be happing here, please ? It's been quite a anticlimax since adding the Bacter AE and has left me wondering.  The next morning I also gave the shrimp a small portion of Glas Garten baby food as I hoped this might attract them out again, but to no avail. I have not fed at all yesterday and today and did a minor 15% water change should this help. 

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Do your shrimp swarm for any food?  My guess is there is already plenty of biofilm in the tank given the low shocking density.  If they have the option of biofilm or artificial food they seem to always choose the biofilm.  In my tiger tank they will swim upside down to get the bacter AE when I add it to the tank and the whole tank goes crazy but I have a lot of shrimp (200?) in a 15 gallon tank (about 1/3 the size of yours).

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Thanks for this Oblong, they never really swarm in either of my taiwan bee tanks both of which are low density. In the one tank they hardly even bother to get into the glass feeding dish and prefer to hide under the moss.  I can usually see and count at least half the tank population at any given time, but since adding the Bacter AE I hardly see them, which is strange and concerning to me as I was anticipating the opposite. The same vanishing act goes with the babies, but the ones I still can still see I see most the time.  Given my low density could I have perhaps overdosed the Bacter AE and changed the water perams which they are not happy about,  just can't work it all out ?  I initially gave them max 2/3s of the feeding cap provided into a 140l tank, within a day the shrimp were gone. The tank has been going for at least six months and no problems. Last night I spied on the tank in the dark with shaded torch light and there were a few more shrimp visible than in the day. This is almost the same scenario I had when I first introduced the shrimp to the tank as they would tend to come out more at night for the first week or two.  

 

Does the Bacter AE powder turn into biofilm almost immediately so a direct food source or does it rather create favourable water conditions for the generation of better biofilm or both of these ?

 

When feeding does one simply sprinkle the Bacter AE on the surface as I think you are suggesting or is it perhaps better to mix it with a small cup of tank water first ?  

 

With feeding Bacter AE  should I rather turn off the canister for five minutes to prevent some of it being sucked into the filter, which I tend to do with the finer baby foods ? 

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I have dosed that amount in a 15 gallon tank so if you have only dosed once I doubt it is an overdose.  I think it contains favorable conditions for biofilm vs actually being biofilm.  I just sprinkle it on the surface and let it disperse from there.  If you can shut off the canister for a few minutes that would probably be helpful so it didn't get sucked into your filter.

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Had another spy session a couple of hours after lights off, most TBs seem to be out grazing on the substrate, so for some reason they now hide during the light hours, well 90% of them.  Any ideas please, is it just coincidental that it coincided with the time when I started feeding Bacter AE ?   Very odd all this !

 

I also dropped my LED strip lights by about 90mm a week or so back, I can't believe this alone has changed their behaviour ?

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hi panda. im fairly noob but I'm almost certain that lowering the light is causing them to hide more from the now more intense light. i can't imagine the bacter ae has anything to do with it. mt understanding of that product is that it just helps to cultivate biofilm in the tank and is more or less harmless!

love n peace

will

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Cool, I will raise the light and see, but it was great to blame poor Old Bacter AE all the same.  :)

 

I have three rows of 5630 LED strips about 130mm from the surface, is this too much light I wonder ? I have a brighter ADA Aquasky LED light unit next door above the yellow neo tank and they are doing splendidly and spend their time upside down on the surface nibbling the floating Bacter AE.

 

Since posting there is a little more activity with the TBs, so perhaps they are now starting to get use to it..

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