Why did my ghost shrimp die? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 02:45 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Missouri, USA
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Why did my ghost shrimp die?

Hey guys,

I have a fairly new tank that hasn't been going even a month yet. I have a heater in it that is set at 77-78 degrees (somewhere between those). I am thinking it is cycled pretty good. I'm no expert but my bettas are doing amazing in it. I have three in it with dividers. They are all really active, curious, and like their food.

I decided to try some ghost shrimp, since I heard they help keep the tank clean. Plus, they are just really cool. So I bought six as a trial.
I thought they were just cool! They really made the tank more fun. I bought them all on Saturday afternoon and found out today (Monday) they have all passed. I have NO idea why!

I heard they are tropical and like warm water. So I thought my temperature it is good for them. I heard they may prefer it slightly cooler but CAN survive in warmer water as they have been described as hardy.

The person at Petsmart (I know they are no experts, but I figured they'd know the basics) recommended I feed them shrimp pellets, as they sink and the ghost shrimp need sinking food. I got them that but also figured they have a small supply of some stray betta pellets that may go uneaten by my bettas.

I put in a piece of shrimp pellet in eat slot as I noticed some were small enough to somehow slip between the screens. Most of what I picked were big ones, though.

I know my bettas didn't bother them. They looked at them curiously but made no move to attack.

I woke up this morning to find them all dead at the bottom of the tank.

My mom came home today and surprised me with four MORE ghost shrimp. They are in the tank now but I am afraid they will meet their end soon. Does anyone know anything I may have done wrong?

I did put some water-clearing liquid in it and algae clearing liquid. Those shouldn't bother them but I am rather desperate to think of anything that went wrong. I am think they are neat and I'd like to have a bunch that will survive in my tank.

Any help would be great. Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 02:55 PM
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consider it for the best. i too purchased some ghost shimp because they looked fun and would clean the tank. i came back to my room the other night to discover my brand new hmpk had died choking on one while i was gone. ive also heard lots of horror stories about the shrimp tearing up fins and such. proceed at your own risk

My Girlfriend and I have these Bettas
Wannahockaloogie-Male VT-Blue w/ purple tips.
Mist-Male CT-Dark Green/Blue.
Kitty-Female Delta-Purple Cambodian
Boo-Female Delta-Cellophane
Nala-Female VT-Orange Cambodian
Hippie-Male CT-Red, White, and Blue Dalmation
Puddles-Male CT-White w/aqua fins and light red tips
Casper-Male CT-Cellophane

R.I.P. Jasmine
R.I.P. Uni
R.I.P. Crackhead
R.I.P. Blues
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 04:55 PM
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You sure they all are actually dead and did not molt? As am sure you know as they grow they will shed their outer shell. The outer left over shell will look like a dead ghost shrimp.

Ghost shrimp are pretty hardy but are extremely sensitive to changes in Ammonia levels...
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 05:10 PM
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The problem with the additive you used for algae and water clear is that they can contain chemicals that are deadly to inverts-some of the algae cleaning additive will have copper and this is a big killer of inverts....sadly, it can be really hard to get the residue out as well and you may not ever be able to keep inverts

Shrimp are also more sensitive to low levels of ammonia, nitrite, nitrate-what the fish can tolerate the inverts may not

Ghost shrimp and shrimp in general are not long lived to start-1-2 years.....when you buy them get the smallest one you can get so they will have time to reproduce before natural death

And as posted...molting...sometimes you will see what looks like a body when it is in fact the exoskeleton-but, once you net it out it is pretty easy to tell if you have a body or exoskeleton......

For feeding them-often any left over food from feeding the Betta will be enough, however, dropping one sinking pellet/6 shrimp in at night with lights out 1-2 times a week and remove any uneaten pellet with lights on in the AM so not to pollute the water or overfeed the Betta is okay too- so you know they are getting good nutrition without compromising the water quality or the Betta health....ghost shrimp are neat little critters......
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-18-2011, 12:22 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the responses, guys.

The four my mom brought home earlier today are already dead. :( That's really sad. If I stop using the additives, will they eventually clear out of the water so I can get shrimp?

I'm probably not gonna get anymore, but it would be handy to know should I change my mind in the future. Is there anything else I can put in a 15 gallon tank divider three ways? I have one mystery snail too who is doing well.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-18-2011, 12:40 AM
Join Date: Nov 2010
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Unfortunately nothing else, most other fish need 10+ gallons. The best bets are Snails (you have), Shrimp (keep dying), and Frogs which are MUCH more sensitive than shrimp.

If you do have shrimp and snails you really shouldn't need to use any algae clear chemicals. My shrimp and snails do wonderfully at keeping blooms under control. I also don't feed them anything special, They just clean up uneaten Betta pellets or bits of frozen foods the Bettas and frogs miss.

Howl - Royal Blue Veil Tail
Blaze - Blue and Red Delta
Mi - Blue Lady
Four - ADF
Seven - Ghost Shrimp
Two - Black Diamond Shrimp
Two - Red Crystal Shrimp
A Few - HitchHiker Snails
One - Golden Apple Snail
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-18-2011, 09:04 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
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It is hard to say if it will be a long term problem or not....it all depends on what is in the additives you used-however, snail can also be sensitive to these products and since they are doing fine....that is a good sign...although shrimp can be more sensitive to lower levels than snails..

How are you acclimating the shrimp before adding them to the tank?
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