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Old 04-02-2012, 03:14 PM   #1 
Olympia
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Summer Project?

Well since I've decided to hold off on breeding for now (maybe 2013 if the world doesn't blow up ;) haha) I've been trying to think of something FUN to do this summer. I'm doing summer school so I can have a spare next year, online or in class, dunno. And probably a co op at a vet office, and then maybe a job. I don't think I'll have much time this summer, but I still want something enjoyable.

ANYWAYS I had the idea to do tiny bowls with shrimp/marimo. I'd probably call it something like TinyTanks. Lol. I want to post some ads for large jars, and 1-2 gallon bowls for cheap/free.

A soil based, with sand on top, planted bowl. I want to sell these to people, probably over kijiji, try a flea market a few days even. I'd write cute little instructions, and give a packet of shrimp food for ones with shrimp.

My ideas (following nano, pico naming system):

attotank- >1 gallon, 1-2 nano marimo, possibly an ornament, something cute and handmade, idea?
femtotank- 1 gallon, 1-2 nano marimo, other plants, smallest shrimp type (bumblee?)
picotank- 1-2 gallon, planted bowl with shrimp, option of buying marimos as add ons.
I want to include: small instruction that I made (shrimp care, water changes, trimming plants), water conditioner, and shrimp food sample.

So, does anyone think I could actually make a little money off of this? I wanna do it mostly for enjoyment, but gotta make a little, not much even.
Most concerned about:
-importing plants. I need to find a good deal on nano marimo, and dwarf hairgrass. What are some other plants that would do good in this kind of set up?
-shrimp species. So far I have in my mind, cherry, crystal red, and bumblebee. Maybe I'd import some blue/yellow ones if this goes well.
-water changes. I need to know what kind of water changes a shrimp bowl needs. I know just marimo requires topping off and a water change every two weeks.

Opinions on this? :)

Also, if this worked, next year, I'd want to try breeding betta imported from Thailand, and I'd want to incorporate them into this. Thinking 3 gallon bowls, with a starter pack of pellets, care instructions, and a heater. These I could easily see running people $50-70.
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Old 04-03-2012, 08:36 PM   #2 
Bombalurina
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I think it is a beautiful idea, but I honestly don't see you making a profit, or even breaking even. Most people won't understand what the shrimp and plants cost you to begin with and won't be willing to pay a price to make up for it.

For species, I would stick to cherry and ghost at first, until you have a method down pat. Crystal reds are ridiculously sensitive to nitrates, so you wouldn't want to start out with them.

For water changes, you really need to figure it out based on ammonia, nitrite and nitrate levels. I'd make the first bowl with maybe 5 shrimp and just test daily until you figure out the routine that is best for you. :)

I'd also look at java fern or anubias, maybe tied to a little rock or piece of driftwood in the middle of the bowl. :)
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Old 04-03-2012, 08:49 PM   #3 
Olympia
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Thought I wasn't going to get a reply on this!
Well, I'll see.. Most things around here are over priced. I think I'm just going to start selling marimo at first anyways, then venture into shrimp. I was thinking $10-12 on a little glass container, with sand, some pebbles/ornament that's handmade, and 2-3 nano marimo. Marimo come with a cute story (2 lovers that turned into marimo together) and symbolize luck and love, people here go gaga for Asian stuff like that.
I'm gonna post em on kijiji, which is free to use, see if they get any popularity, then decide whether to take it further :)

I was hoping for some faster growing plants, that I could use trimmings of my own. I don't think moss grows very fast though. :s
I didn't know CRS were so sensitive! I just know they are the most popular among shrimpists. I will start with some pet store cherries/ghosts that I'll breed myself.
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Old 04-03-2012, 10:08 PM   #4 
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CRS are pretty crazy. I had 17 in a 3 gallon tank with a heater set just right, lots of fast-growing life plants, small-grained substrate, a bubble filter...it should have been perfect. Now I have two. Those two are pretty hardy, though.
When I convert the 23 gallon to an NPT, I'm going to have a go at turning the 3 gallon into one as well and adding some more.

It's true, people do tend to love cute decor. I think your bowls sound really pretty! I think there will actually be an advantage to slow-growing plants - they are low-maintenance, which will be more attractive to people buying them. :)
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Old 04-04-2012, 05:29 AM   #5 
Olympia
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That's true. My anubias actually grows semi fast, I'd say. I notice a lot of planted bowls generally need trimming quite frequently.
Marimo balls can live in water with chlorine no problem, right? :p
I told a friend about this and she wants one so bad, and said it's a good idea. An alternative to bamboo in vases!
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