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Lowering PH in Shrimp Tank failing


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Hello.  I am brand new to this forum so I apologize if I didn’t tag my post right or do something wrong.  But I need some insights/help on my new shrimp tank. 

 

I am keeping raccoon tiger shrimps in a temporary 2 gallon cycled acrylic QT tank until my real shrimp tank finishes cycling.  (Yes I bought the shrimp before I matured my tank 🙄 too late)

i read that my raccoon tiger shrimp need a PH in range 6-6.5 but the LFS and their current QT tank are at ph 7.5-7.6 kh 3-4 Gh 7-8.  

 

The shrimp have been in the QT tank happily for a little over a month now and have been full grown but no berries or babies yet I decided after contacting other successful raccoon shrimp breeders and reading online that it would be best if I tried to lower the Ph down Around 6.2-6.5.  I have pre cycled Ada Amazonia aquasoil that no longer leaches ammonia and I swapped the substrate out of the cycling tiger shrimp tank (with no shrimp in it yet) and switching from “salty shrimp Gh/kh +” remineralizer to “bee shrimp Gh+” and it’s now at ph 6.0-6.2 kh 0-1 Gh 6, which is great but the issue has been lowering the Ph in the separate raccoon tigers QT tank so I can acclimate the shrimp to the new parameters slowly over a few weeks.  

 

I started doing 10-25% water changes with the new “bee shrimp Gh+” remineralizer (at TDS 150—QT tank is currently at TDS 200) every couple of days on a SLOW drip line (takes up to 3-5 hours to refill the QT tank so the switch is easier on the shrimp) and adding teaspoons of cycled aquasoil Amazonia and some peat moss balls to the QT tank so when the KH drops the ph will be buffered.  I have done three or four of these drip water changes to the new water parameters(kh 0-1 gh 6) and keep checking the ph, Gh and kh of the QT tank twice a day and they aren’t lowering down at all.  It seems very weird to me.

 

Before the switch the parameters were ph 7.5-7.6, kh 3-4, gh 8-9.  I thought for sure it would be lowered down to atleast kh 2 and Gh 6-7 (halfway between the old water and the new water parameters) atleast but no changes have happened.  

 

Here is some info about the QT tank that I am trying to lowering the ph in:

 

2 gallon acrylic QT tank

airstone and sponge

Mignon 60 hanging filter

Small mossy lava rock 

cholla wood

Lots of floating  plants and hornwort 

java ferns

soiderwood pieces

cattappa, guava and oak leaves

Shrimp mineral balls 

high quality foods from Han aquatics, Dennerle, betaglucan, Bacter AE, nettle etc.  

very matured environment With visible micro organisms and happy shrimp.  No deaths.  

Tank temp between 70-73 cooled by fans several small RO water top offs every day 

 

I will continue doing water changes until I see any changes but it seems odd  that after changing 50-60% change by now and see nothing different when I use my test kits. (new, non expired kits and shake the bottles violently before use)

 

any advice or ideas for me out there?  I am trying to avoid any sudden rapid changes in their tank since the raccoon tigers cost me around $130 and don’t want any deaths although they do seem pretty hardy so far.  The shrimps breeder is local and I found out they do use buffered substrate and low ph so the switch should be good for them.   

 

 

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Forgot to mention I do have a tiny bag of activated carbon in the HOB filter just to keep the water clear and clean.  My other thought is maybe the air stone is raising the kh and ph somehow but it’s also helping to keep my QT tank cool in a warm room so I am a bit afraid of turning it off and I read a lot that airstone is super important to shrimps.  

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1 hour ago, AdvancedAquaculture said:

I honestly just recommend doing a very slow drip into the estabilished tank. Like 1 drop every 1-2 seconds and let them drip for overnight or all day.

 

 

Thanks for the reply.  Yah I couldn’t decide what to do since the shrimp have been in the QT tank 1 month already at non-ideal ph and it will be closer to October when I get them in their actual tank.  Wasn’t sure if I should change the parameters of the QT tank now since it is such a Long wait at the wrong parameters for the poor shrimps.  But I have thought about doing what you suggested too: Just not worry about the current ph in the QT tank and just drip them slowly when it’s finally ready to move them to their new tank.  Not sure if I’ll get die off from dropping 1.5 ph even with a super slow drip acclimation.  

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20 minutes ago, aqua_che_scapes said:

 

 

Thanks for the reply.  Yah I couldn’t decide what to do since the shrimp have been in the QT tank 1 month already at non-ideal ph and it will be closer to October when I get them in their actual tank.  Wasn’t sure if I should change the parameters of the QT tank now since it is such a Long wait at the wrong parameters for the poor shrimps.  But I have thought about doing what you suggested too: Just not worry about the current ph in the QT tank and just drip them slowly when it’s finally ready to move them to their new tank.  Not sure if I’ll get die off from dropping 1.5 ph even with a super slow drip acclimation.  

I didn't realize you were still cycling the other tank. If u want to lower the hardness and pH I would add more buffering soil and do .5g pure RO water changes dripped in slowly.

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1 hour ago, AdvancedAquaculture said:

I didn't realize you were still cycling the other tank. If u want to lower the hardness and pH I would add more buffering soil and do .5g pure RO water changes dripped in slowly.

 

Yah I seeded the main tank with a canister filter full of aged media from a heavy bioload tank so it didn’t technically need  cycled but the tank has been unstable and lots of cloudy water and bacteria blooms since I set it up (probably added way too much seeded media).  And it’s going through another cloudy bloom now that I added aquasoil and dropped the ph.  Shocked the bacteria I guess.  

 

I am not very well educated on slightly altering water parameters for shrimps but learning.  I didn’t realize I could do a straight RO water change either.  Hopefully that will help the drop the KH down so the aquasoil can start lowering the ph.  I’m afraid doing this change all at once will drop the ph too suddenly.  Is that true? Should I add more aquasoil after or before the water change or does that even matter? Won’t that make the TDS too low as well in a 2 gallon? (Sorry for my long responses.... thinking out loud) 

 

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3 hours ago, aqua_che_scapes said:

 

Yah I seeded the main tank with a canister filter full of aged media from a heavy bioload tank so it didn’t technically need  cycled but the tank has been unstable and lots of cloudy water and bacteria blooms since I set it up (probably added way too much seeded media).  And it’s going through another cloudy bloom now that I added aquasoil and dropped the ph.  Shocked the bacteria I guess.  

 

I am not very well educated on slightly altering water parameters for shrimps but learning.  I didn’t realize I could do a straight RO water change either.  Hopefully that will help the drop the KH down so the aquasoil can start lowering the ph.  I’m afraid doing this change all at once will drop the ph too suddenly.  Is that true? Should I add more aquasoil after or before the water change or does that even matter? Won’t that make the TDS too low as well in a 2 gallon? (Sorry for my long responses.... thinking out loud) 

 

Id do it after. For some reason I thought it was a 5g. You will want to do an even smaller water change than .5g of RO

 

I would add the soil afterward. The soil should soak up the KH as well but the gh will only drop with water changes with lower GH/RO water.

 

If youre worried about doing it too fast maybe do a water change using just gh+ to a gh of 3-4.

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17 minutes ago, AdvancedAquaculture said:

Id do it after. For some reason I thought it was a 5g. You will want to do an even smaller water change than .5g of RO

 

I would add the soil afterward. The soil should soak up the KH as well but the gh will only drop with water changes with lower GH/RO water.

 

If youre worried about doing it too fast maybe do a water change using just gh+ to a gh of 3-4.

 

Yah the main tank is 5 gallons with an eheim canister filter and the QT tank is only 2 gallons.  Pretty small.  Don’t have a lot of space . 

 

Yah I’ll do a smaller RO water change on the 2 gallon (where the shrimp are now).  I’ve been water changing with Gh+ at TDS 150.  Need to check the GH level on that and lower it if needed.  Hopefully in the next week it’ll be where I want it to be.  Just seemed really weird the kh/ph hasn’t budged at all yet after several Gh+ water changes this last week. So weird.  Maybe the remaining KH is somehow dominating the water column still.   I’ll just keep at it I guess.  I really appreciate the help. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just a update on the shrimp tank. 

 

I have done several more kh 0 gh 6 RODI water changes and now the tank matches those parameters which is great . I’ve added a lot more of my ph lowering amazinia substrate to the tank but the ph is still above 7.  It has gone from 7.5 down to 7.1 which is good but not low enough.  I put almost a whole cup more in 24 hours ago and no changes have happened.  The kh is 0 in there or close to it so this doesn’t make sense.  Now I am wondering why.  Maybe something in the filter like active carbon or something else is preventing the ph from dropping.  I’m out of ideas.  Or maybe it just takes a TON of Ada Amazonia to drop the ph.  But the Tank the shrimp are in is only 2 gallons so it shouldn’t need very much to change it.  

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