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Dwarf shrimp breeding guide January 16 2017, 0 Comments

The best products to help you maintain a healthy, thriving, and successful dwarf shrimp tank all available right here on Discobee

 

Dwarf shrimp breeding guide. How to keep things simple.
The original article was written by “ShrimpZoo” on TPT back in 2012. We’ve since updated this simple guide with all the latest methods and knowledge.


Introduction:

This article here will outline the basic requirements for Crystal Bee Shrimp (Caridina logemani) breeding. We will provide what we feel is some of the most efficient ways to breed Crystal Bee Shrimp.

This article is written with the assumption that you know what the basics of keeping a shrimp tank are. Therefore, I will not go into depth of what gH, kH, pH, or TDS is, or what it means to cycle an aquarium. These pieces of information are available in some of our other helpful blogs.

Note: This guide is the basis of how we breed Crystal Bee Shrimp. What works for me may not work for you. Regardless, topics discussed in this guide can be taken as useful information.

Table of Contents:

1. Tank Size – What is a good size?
2. Parameters – What are the ideal parameters?
3. Substrate – Investing in Active Substrate
4. Water – Using RO Water
5. Feeding – Schedule & Nutrition
6. Plants & Breeding Aids - Floaters, mosses, mineral rocks, etc
7. Equipment – Filters 
8. The Laws & Recommendations – What to avoid and what to abide by
9. Conclusion

1.  Tank Size:

I would recommend having a tank size of at least 10 gallons or more to easily breed Crystal Bee shrimp. Breeding Crystal Bee shrimp in smaller tanks is possible but will require more work than breeding in larger tanks. 

Water changes are a necessity in smaller tanks and will compromise parameter stability for those who are inexperienced. The bigger the tank the better, since you have a larger water volume to work with and parameters will not be as impacted by change as easily.

Having a bigger tank, parameters are easy to keep stable and maintenance will be minimal, where consistent water changes are not necessary. A 10-gallon tank is a good standard size to start breeding Crystal Bee shrimp.

2.  Water Parameters:

Crystal Bee shrimp will thrive in the following parameters:
Temperature: 70°F - 73°F
pH: 5.5 – 6.5
gH: 4.0 – 6.
kH: 0.0 – 1.0
Ammonium: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: As low as possible
TDS: 100-200
 
*Additional Bee shrimp parameters on our Water Parameters Blog

Having an ACTIVE substrate and using RO water will be the key to obtaining and maintaining these parameters.

The key to having them breeding is keeping the parameters CONSTANT.

3.  Substrate:

As mentioned before, investing in ACTIVE substrate will make your life easy. It buffers (AKA brings down) your pH to a level that Crystal Bee shrimp will prefer.

The preferred active substrate used now is SL-Aqua Nature Soil.  It does not leech large amounts of ammonia like ADA. This means you will not have to wait as long as you typically would with ADA during cycling.

It is recommended to leave the tank running for minimum 1 month before introducing livestock so that bio-film will be established and the tank will be mature when starting your tank. Baby shrimps need lots of bio-film to survive during the initial weeks of life.
 
SL-Aqua Cycle Method blog.

In addition, ALL active substrates eventually expire. Once expired, they lose their ability to buffer and are unable to keep a stable PH. This will be your indication its time to have another tank cycling/cycled.

4.  Water:

Using RO water for the tank is highly recommended.

When performing water changes, use REMINERALIZED RO water. For top-offs, use pure RO water. This allows you to control what is going into your aquarium. The only thing you are required to do is to remineralize the water to your target gH to use for water changes and to initially start-up the tank. In addition, because RO water has a kH of 0, your active substrate will easily change the pH of the RO water.

The #1 recommended remineralizer for Crystal Bee Shrimp is SL-Aqua Blue Wizard for GH. KH products should not be used with active buffering soils.

SL-Aqua Blue Wizard Liquid GH remineralizer is one of the most popular, easiest, and cleanest GH options available.

In addition to GH, there are additional liquid options to aid the shrimp’s health. Extremely popular SL-Aqua TM-1, which provides additional liquid minerals and nutrients to improve shrimp immunity, increases spawning, greater growth, and stronger colors. Making your shrimp stronger, healthier and more beautiful! MK Blood Diamond’s high concentration of minerals, multi-vitamins, and chitin to improve growth and overall tank environment.

5.  Feeding:

A good diet for Crystal Bee shrimp is a well-balanced one. The variety of foods you feed your shrimp should include a source of protein, veggies, vitamins, and baby/powder foods.

Here is an example of some of the foods we use on a regular basis:

Protein based foods such as, SL-Aqua MORE Meat, Nishiki Protein and Lowkeys Hiden No Esa

Vegetable-based foods like, SL-Aqua MORE Veggie, Nishiki Veggie, Ebikuma Senbei, Ebita Breed. 

Baby/Powder foods - SL-Aqua Baby Food, SL-Aqua Magic Powder (our favorite food), Ebikuma Baby Food, Lowkeys B18, L’Bee powder based foods. Lots of options in this category.

Kale and Spinich are additional great vegetables. Along with Tantora Mulberry.

Be sure not to overfeed, less is always more. Overfeeding can cause nitrates and ammonia.

6.  Plants & Breeding Aids:

Floating Plants: Amazon Frogbit, Water Lettuce, Red Root Floaters, etc.

Floating plants are very good at sucking up nitrates in the water. Amazon Frogbit, Water Lettuce, Red Root Floaters, etc. provide great hiding places for shrimp and are very easy plants to take care of.

Moss: Various Moss.

Having Moss in your tank will greatly benefit shrimp. Java Moss is the hardiest and most common of the mosses. Moss will provide shrimp with a grazing area, a place to feel secure, and will suck up excess nitrates. Con: moss grows quickly and will require trimming.

Other Plants: Bucephalandra (our favorite plant)

“Buce” are becoming more and more popular in shrimp tanks. Both aesthetically pleasing and ease of care. Buce are easy to care for, do not require heavy lighting or CO2. Also grow slowly so you don’t have to trim often.

Many other plants can be used in the tank since active substrates are rich in nutrients. The plants listed are recommendations as they are hardy and require little to no care. Planting your tank will reduce nitrates.

Cholla Wood, Driftwood, and artificial hiding places

Providing hiding places for your shrimp will allow them to feel secure. Cholla Wood and Driftwood also provide a lot of surface area for shrimp to graze biofilm.  Both also make great places to attach Buce plants.

Breeding aids: We do not recommend any of these liquids such as Dance, Eros, etc.. A cool water change is a much more natural option. 

7.  Equipment:

In order to minimize the amount of maintenance required, we suggest having any of the following 3 types of filtration in your aquarium:

Sponge Filter: ATI Sponge Filter, SeaPora Sponge Filter, Dual Sponge Filter or etc. Sponge filters provide a grazing area for shrimp and add aeration to the aquarium. They also offer a large surface area in which bacteria grow on. They are effective at biological filtration, which is very important in keeping and breeding shrimp.

HOB Filter: AquaClear or various other HOB Filters. HOBs are very easy to use and will provide a lot of filtration (look @ the rating of #gal/hr to see for yourself). For example, for a 30 gallon tank, having an AC50 rated for 200 gal/hr means that the AC50 will filter my entire tank 6 times an hour. The output of a HOB Filter breaks the surface of the water and provides O2 exchange.  HOB filters can also hold a decent amount of biofiltration media.

Canister: Eheim canister filter or similar. Canister filters are made to filter large amounts of water and allow you to use various filter medias. The canister is very roomy and will allow the user to use any combination of mechanical, chemical, or biological media. The spray-bar on the output of the Canister will provide a ton of oxygenation for your tank.

Under Gravel Filters (UGFs): Yes UGFS! Under Gravel Filters provide a very large amount of aerobic bacteria using all the soil in the tank as a filter medium. Make sure you set it up correctly, using a layer of media like Eheim media will help keep the soil from passing through the UGF slits.

NOTES:

- When picking a HOB or Canister model for your aquarium, typically choose a model that is an upgrade of the model recommended for the aquarium size. For example, an AquaClear 20 is rated for a 5-20 gallon aquarium, if you had a 15 gallon aquarium you would instead get the AquaClear 30 (rated for 10-30 gallons) or AquaClear 50 (rated for 20-50 gallons) so it would filter the total amount of water in your tank many more times in a timeframe.

- Extremely important to have some sort of pre-filter attached to your HOB Filter or Canister Filter; whether it is a sponge, a pantyhose stocking, or a stainless steel pre-filter. This will prevent adults and baby shrimp from being sucked up and chopped into pieces.

- Don’t bother using activated carbon in the tank. Consider it useless in a shrimp tank. Instead, replace it with either BioMax, Purigen, or another layer of sponge. Carbon will expire and release what it has stored back into the tank. Carbon is typically only used to remove medication that is dosed into an aquarium.

8.  Laws & Recommendations of Bee Shrimp Keeping:

- Snails may be added, they benefit the tank by being a back up clean up crew and provide infusoria with their slime trail (a source of food for baby shrimp).

- DO NOT add fish into the tank, the only 100% shrimp safe fish is the Oto (Otocinclus), any other fish will be detrimental to breeding. If you want a fish tank setup a fish only tank.

- A starting colony of 10 or more shrimps is recommended. You can start with any number you wish.

- Every few generations, introduce different stock from another source to prevent inbreeding and to increase genetic variety to strengthen your stock

- Slowly drip in your top-offs and water changes at a steady rate. A shift in parameters is detrimental.

- Limit the evaporation of your tank by using a hood or glass-hinged top.

- Keep easy-to-maintain plants, fertilizers, and CO2 can make things complex fast, especially for beginner shrimp keepers. Keep it simple!

- Whenever introducing anything new into your tank (such as plants), quarantine.

- Provide good surface agitation for O2 exchange via spray bars, sponge filters, etc. (Prepare for blackouts and find an alternative method to cause agitation - ex: scooping water out of the tank and pouring it back in, running a drip with tank water, battery powered air pump, Oxydator, etc)

- It is recommended to leave the tank running for minimum 1 month before introducing livestock. This way, bio-film will be established and the tank's water parameters can be confirmed as stable. Baby shrimps need lots of bio-film, oxygen, and stable parameters to survive during the initial weeks of life.

- Do not change what works. Leave your tank alone as much as you can. This means, don’t touch your filters unless they are 95% clogged and little to no flow, and keep your hands out. The less you mess with your tank, the more likely your shrimp will breed. Shrimps like stability.

- Invest in a Liquid Test Kit such as Sera and a simple TDS pen/meter to check the water parameters. Without this, you can never know if your water parameters are where it’s supposed to be at despite dosing according to the label. Having a test kit that tests for Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, gH, kH, and PH will allow you to identify most if not every problem that may be occurring within your tank.

9.  Conclusion:

In the end, the key thing you should take away from this article is:

-  If it works don’t change it. Don’t try to trail blaze a new way when proven methods are already in use.
 
-  Keep it simple!

Feel free to share what you feel is essential on breeding Crystal Bee shrimp or if you think something is missing from this guide email us!

Best of luck breeding and caring for your Crystal Bee shrimp!
 
 
Thanks again to “ShrimpZoo” for writing the initial guide many years ago!

 


Bee Shrimp Grading charts, photos, graphs. March 30 2016, 0 Comments

Bee Shrimp Grading charts, photos, graphs and other helpful information.  We will add to this from time to time as we run across any helpful info. please feel free to let us know if you find anything that would help others.

 

Here is one of the most referenced Caridina flow charts around. Its generally pretty helpful, but is a few years old and could use some more updates. Credit goes to Rah-bop.com for creating it.

 full res image - https://c2.staticflickr.com/2/1564/25866554080_ebfb2bbc08_o.jpg

 

Next few are from the very popular AUS http://shrimpkeepersforum.com they are turning out some very nice charts lately. Please support their forum. 

The first one is super helpful to those that want to learn to identify their Crystal Red Shrimp. Also applies to their Crystal Black Shrimp.

 full res image - https://c2.staticflickr.com/2/1548/26046938372_190780e581_o.png

Now that you've identified your grade, this chart will help you identify the quality of the grade and if you want to improve your line which to cull and which to keep.  

full res image link - https://c2.staticflickr.com/2/1543/25536784823_eac2f17fef_o.png


Interview with Glenn Ng a leading dwarf shrimp breeder June 12 2015, 0 Comments

The best products to help you maintain a healthy and productive dwarf shrimp tank all available right here on Discobee

First off thanks to Glenn and Aussie Tropical Fish and Shrimp FaceBook Group for allowing us to share this interview on our blog.

Background

Glenn has been breeding ornamental shrimp for 5 years and is based on the Gold Coast of Australia. He breeds a variety of neocaridina and caridina shrimps, and is currently setting up tiger programs. He is renowned for and focuses mainly on neocaridina and produces some amazing colours such as Blue Dream and Fire Red variants. His Cherry Shrimp are highly sought after due to their pure and vibrant colours. He was also one of the four judges at the recently held 2015 Australian Shrimp Championships.

Interview

1. How long have you been in the shrimp industry for and what got you started in the industry?

I started with aquariums back in march 2003 with a pair of neon blue acaras whom my friend at a workshop convinced me to try breeding for my birthday. With shrimp I started around 2010, way before the shrimp craze in Australia happened. I saw a picture of a SSS Mosura Flower and a CRS and I was hooked for life. That was what did it for me, it was shrimp that I wanted to breed from then on. I maxed out my credit card buying shrimp when I first saw them in Australia and have been hooked ever since!

2. Can you tell us a little more about your shrimp breeding and grow out operations and how many tanks do you operate?

At the moment I have 10 tanks dedicated to caridina species and 20 tanks dedicated to neocaridina. I'm also setting up another system dedicated to tiger species and in the future would like systems for Australian natives and experimental crosses.

3. What are the main species that you are producing and selling at the moment?

I breed many variations of neocaridina davidi and caridina. My all time favourites are traditional Crystal Red Shrimp (CRS) and Crystal Black Shrimp (CBS). My priorities usually change annually depending on the current Australian market. But its not what you think... I prioritise my breeding programs on what I think is taking a downturn due to quality as there are many mass breeders out there who have not considered maintaining the quality of the shrimps they have bred. I also prioritise my breeding programs on strengthening the numbers of shrimps that are lacking in popularity.

My main concentration for the past 5 years have been on the CRS, CBS and cherry shrimp varieties. While I still do all variations of Taiwan bees, my true love and passion lies in the crystals and cherry shrimps. Purely because of the challenges of creating a pure line crystal shrimp and the endless possibilities with the potential of the wonderful cherry shrimp. And then there is the odd whimsical programs when I have an idea for a cool new line or a new mutation.

4. How do you breed such beautiful, bight and pure colours in your cherry shrimp?

A very simple process of selectively breeding the best males and females with each other. A strict culling process is more important for the males than females as the females are late peakers and really only show their true colours after 6 - 8 months of age.

The process I normally follow is to cull any shrimp I find undesirable and then pick out all the males. Select the top 3 and let them remain in the tank. Water parameters are also extremely important and a high diet of natural and vegetable based foods is also essential for good colours.

5. How do you go about breeding a new colour strain of cherry shrimp?

First of all research is the most important aspect of breeding a new colour strain. Overseas breeders are normally 5 - 10 years ahead of us here in Australia so its always a good idea to see if anyone outside of Australia has done it and how.

In most circumstances for me I have had the odd mutation from a pure strain line and I then capitalise on this by line breeding them with the next best shrimp from the same line. I have done this with examples such as the blue dreams from carbon rilli and blue body red rilli. I am currently working on a green body and blue body orange rilli as well as the very challenging green cherry.

6. What are the ideal water parameters for keeping and breeding cherry shrimp?

While they have a very high range, I have found that the best water parameters are as follows

Ph 7.2 - 7.5. General Hardness (GH) 8-10. Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) 150 - 250

7. What are your tips for successfully keeping and breeding cherry shrimp?

Less is more (keep the setup simple) and the more natural foods the better. Stability is also the key and water changes of 20% every 2 to 4 weeks works very well for me.

8. What do you like most about the shrimp industry?

The endless variations and genetic potential. We are always seeing new colours and patterns every year from shrimp enthusiasts and its always so exciting.

9. What do you like least about the shrimp industry?

The unwillingness to learn, to research and the ignorance from some traditional fish keepers. Shrimps are a completely different style of aquarium keeping and there have been many fish keepers who have bought high end shrimps from me, NOT LISTENING TO A SIMPLE TIP OR WATER PARAMETER INFORMATION I HAVE GIVEN THEM and expecting everything to be ok.

The other frustrating aspect of the industry are the shrimp breeders who have mass breed shrimps, not culling a single shrimp and selling hundreds to Australian shrimp enthusiasts for a huge financial gain. At the present moment I have found the yellow and sunkist cherries in Australia to have gone very far downhill in terms of quality and colour intensity. Finally, selling juvenile shrimps under the recommended size of 8 - 12mm. Recently a large number of breeders have been selling undersized shrimp and preaching it to be acceptable. Even at 3mm!

10. What positive changes would you like to see in the shrimp industry?

I would like to see much more educational information about shrimp keeping and a database of shrimp genetical information for crossing programs. I would also like to see a better camaraderie for shrimp breeders who will maintain pure lineages as many people are crossing shrimps to try and make new lines without maintaining and taking care of pure line stocks. If this trend continues we will not have pure CRS, Taiwan bees, tiger and cherry shrimps in Australia.

11. Where do you see the shrimp industry heading in the next 10 years?

The current trend is the pinto shrimp and their possible new lines such as the skunk zebra spotted head and galaxy lines. In due time, I believe many tiger caradinas will be used to create different line and patterned pintos. As for cherries we have purple and pink to go! I have no doubts larger shrimps and the strengthening of sulawesi shrimps will be a big topic.

12. Are there any high tech or innovative ideas that you believe would help the shrimp industry progress into the future?

Shrimps are actually very easy to keep. The only difficulty is the adjustment of shrimp keeping style in comparison to fish keeping. In terms of technology I cant think of anything that would make shrimp keeping easier. Its the education of shrimp keeping that is necessary. I have to admit a water parameter controller would be exceptional!

13. What are the greatest challenges to the shrimp industry at the moment and in the future?

Education and livestock access.

14. Are there any funny or embarrassing situations you can recall in regards to the shrimp industry?

My mother once spilt a whole cake into my Taiwan bee system and I had to do an 80% water change! There was not much sleep that night! I've also dropped the odd bag or two while packaging shrimp with the shrimpies all over the floor. Had to pick them up put them back into their tank and catch new ones.

15. What's you favourite fish, shrimp and plant species and why?

My current favourite fish is the akrawat multicolour endler which I bought from Joe Putta in Thailand. The variation of rainbow patterns is amazing! But generally I am a big fan of opthalmotilapia ventralis and geophagus. I've kept African and American and many other cichlids from geos to tangs and malawis as well as catfish and many others.

Shrimps... I would have to say I love them all but pure black line and pure red line shrimps have always been my all time favourite. Orange eye blue tigers third! As for plants I am not heavily involved with them but have a collection of mosses and rarer plants. My current favourites are the bucephalandras going around atm. I love the variety available in plants.

16. What's the most interesting fish, shrimp and plants that you have come across over your time in the industry?

The most interesting fish for me by far been the catfish and the variation of oddities out there. Shrimp wise, the chameleon shrimp is amazing and plants I would say all the different variations of aquatic mosses around the world.

A fascinating and in depth interview. Glenn makes some very interesting points and gives some great tips for keeping and breeding shrimp. A special thanks to Glenn for taking part in the interview and for taking time to answer the questions for our members. I'm sure it will be of benefit and interest to Aussie Tropical Fish and Shrimp members.

 

Glenn sent so many amazing photos to Discobee to share! 

Thanks Glenn


Interview with Zi Long thanks to ShrimpState.com June 10 2015, 0 Comments

First we'd like to thank Demin Wong @ http://shrimpstate.com/ for this interview.

Please support ShrimpState by reading the interview on their site!  http://shrimpstate.com/interview-zi-long/

Today, we are very fortunate to have interviewed one of the hobbyist in Singapore. Zi Long has join this fast growing community of shrimp keeping in Singapore for about 8 months now. He is currently rearing some red spotted German pintos.

 We manage to grab hold of him for a short interview and snap some pictures of his beautiful shrimps.

Q: Can you share, what are some of the products that you are using to maintain your tank?
Zi Long: I use SL-Aqua series of products right from the start, including Purify for cycling and building of biofilm. TM-1 to encourage breeding, Bing Cao as plant nutrients (as I am a Bucephalandra junkie), as well as weekly sprinkle of SL-Aqua Magic Powder. I also use SL-Aqua baby food to feed my shrimplets.

Q: What are some things that you will look out for in your shrimp tank?
Zi Long: Generally, I like to err on the safe side. I am very mindful of pH levels and variations in the tank from the start, and have a pH meter to do so. Also, I do bi-weekly ammonia, nitrite and nitrate tests. I do not have the habit of monitoring the kH levels too much, as mine have consistently shown negligible kH values. I’m more concerned about the gH valies, which brings me to the point of shrimp behaviors.

I am most worried about molting issues, as it often leads to death, and taking advice from experiences folks, it can be a result of extremities of gH. ADA Amazonia and other active soil would usually control for fluctuations in gH, but I am currently going through the process of monitoring active soil that I have, which is reputed to contain minimum ingredients.

It is definitely not inert, but it’s effects on waters in creating a conducive environment for shrimps area deplorable. I will share more when I have tested it fully.

Speaking of other shrimp behaviors, I treat long term discoloration or loss of colors as something to look about for. I did not have enough research to go into the specifics, but they are enough reason for me to check my water.

Q: I can see that you take great care in maintaining your tank. Do you think water change is important and how often do you change?
Zi Long: I do think water change is important for shrimp growth and overall health. This is a habit I had developed from keeping planted tanks and to a large degree, it would also apply to the shrimp setup. I take it as an opportunity to flush out ammonia and nitrates, as well as fecal and decomposing matter such as food and plants that contributes to them. I do not change more than 20% of the water thou based on my personal preference.

I am pretty conservative when it comes to water change thou, so when doing water changes, there are two things that I am extremely particular of:

1. I always ensure the water I’m adding into the tank matches the water parameters in the tank as far as possible. I do this by re-mineralizing the RO water. However, top ups would be roughly 70-80% of the TDS of the water.

2. I would drip the water into the tank using a drip bucket. It is marked to be six litres, and usually, I would finish dripping in the ‘new’ water between 1.5 to 2 hours.

We would like to thank Zi Long for sharing his thoughts and methods on this hobby. We would like to hear from other hobbyist as well who like to share their experiences, feel free to drop us an email at our contact page and stay tune for more interviews with other hobbyist!

Lastly, we are working on our online shop and we promise it will be available very soon! We would also like to thank SL-Aqua for sponsoring this post and all the support from overseas readers! Keep reading and keep shrimping!


Cycling a dwarf shrimp tank the easy SL-Aqua way! May 13 2015, 0 Comments

The best products to help you maintain a healthy, thriving, and successful dwarf shrimp tank all available right here on Discobee

    1. Lightly sprinkle SL-Aqua Magic Powder evenly across the surface of your substrate.
    2. Fill with just enough RO water to just cover the substrate only.
    3. Add SL-Aqua Purify over the Magic Powder and substrate. ~20ml per gallon of water added in step #2.
    4. Wait 24 - 48hrs for the Purify and Magic Powder to seed the substrate with healthy bacteria.
    5. After 24 - 48hrs then fill the rest of the tank with RO and turn on sponge filters or other filters, add heater set to 86F during cycling only.
    6. In about a week or so you will start to see a nice layer of bacteria everywhere, especially on the substrate.
    7. After 10-15 days dose an additional amount of Purify, 10ml per gallon of water.
    8. Around approximately day 30 or so the bacteria layer may start to clear up and the water will begin to become nice and clear. It's ok for some of the bacteria to remain present, the shrimp will feast on it!
    9. Perform a 50% RO water change and adjust GH using SL-Aqua Blue Wizard to desired GH range. 
    10. Acclimatize and add your beautiful shrimp.
    11. Dose with SL-Aqua TM-1 to ensure trace elements, shrimp immunity, increases spawning, greater growth, stronger color, and also increases the ability of plants to absorb nutrients

*Add SL-Aqua Shrimp Safe Bing Tsau Plant Fertilizer every 2-3 days after step #6 to increase the growth speed of nitrifying algae.

 

Photos from satisfied clients using the super easy SL-Aqua Cycling Method.

Notice the shrimp feasting on the bacteria! 

 


Silane Shrimp Effective Microorganism for your shrimps May 03 2015, 0 Comments

Silane Shrimp showed us his way on how to make effective and beneficial Microorganism for your shrimps tanks. It works as well on fish and any aquarium you need microorganism to work on with fast effect and responses.

Silane Shrimp Effective Microorganism "SEMO" cleans the water, breaks down waste, increases tank density, increases survival rates and even provides nutrients for shrimp.  The cost involved in making "SEMO" is very very low and you will be surprised by its effectiveness.

You need:
1) Mosura BT-9, 1 household teaspoon (flat)
2) Mosura Richwater, 2 household tablespoon (flat), optional
3) White Sugar or unrefined sugar, 4 household tablespoon (flat)
4) 1 squeeze bottle, 400ml to 500ml
5) Boiling water
6) Measuring Spoon or Tablespoon and teaspoon.

 Variations: Mosura Richwater is optional, a smaller portion can be used, but this provides microelements and nutrients for the growth of microorganisms. 1 household teaspoon of Mosura BT-9 can be used to mix with up to 1000ml of water.  Recommended maximum amount of Mosura BT-9 is 1 household teaspoon (flat) to 1 litre of water, if you make more then 2 litres, use 2 flat teaspoons.  For sugar, it is recommended to use 4 flat tablespoons of sugar for every 500ml of water.  If you do not add Richwater, it will be clear solution.

The below instruction is for making 500ml of "SEMO". 

  1. Boil a kettle of water. If your area uses chloramine in tap water, I would advise you to, dechlorinated water, bottled distilled or mineral water or RO water.
  2. Scoop 2 tablespoon of Mosura Richwater and put into the squeeze bottle.
  3. Scoop 4 tablespoon of sugar and put into the squeeze bottle.
  4. Pour about 500ml of boiling water into the squeeze bottle. Leave about 1 to 2cm of bottle unfilled. 
  5. Leave the Richwater solution to allow the temperature to drop to ambient temperature. 
  6. Scoop 1 teapsoon of Mosura BT-9 into the solution. 
  7. Tighten the cap and turn the bottle a few times, not shake, to help dissolve of sugar better and mix BT-9 better.  
  8. Leave the bottle in dark place in your shrimp room for 2 weeks at summer and for 1 month if winter. Bloating of bottle should occur and it is normal. If there is bloating, release the air by opening up the noozle or cap slight before turning the bottle upside down.
  9. Turn the bottle upside down twice every 2 to 4 days, not shaking it.

Usage:
Tank setup: 100ml of "SEMO" for every 25G of tank water
After water change: 10ml for 25G of water
Weekly maintenance without water change: 5ml for 25G of water.

Daily use is not necessary as microorganism in "SEMO" can survive in your tank water for days or perhaps weeks as the mixture solution offer food to bacteria and wastes in your tank is another source of food for the added microorganism to survive.

Of course, you can adjust the amount accordingly to your water condition.
For those heavy use, you can make larger amounts like we did.
In cool weather/temperatures, the mixture can be used for 12 to 15months. In hot weather, the bottle can be used up to 6 to 9 months.

 

*photo credit to Silane Shrimp.

 


Dwarf Shrimp Water Parameters February 13 2015, 0 Comments

The best products to help you maintain a healthy, thriving, and successful dwarf shrimp tank all available right here on Discobee


MK-BREED - How to pick and selectively breed Crystal Shrimp January 30 2015, 0 Comments

The best products to help you maintain a healthy and productive shrimp tank all available right here on Discobee

How to pick and selectively breed Crystal Shrimp.

Incorporating your own sense of beauty to create your own line of shrimp.

Some questions we will cover below:

  1. What is the most suitable environment for Crystal Shrimp?
  2. How to create a suitable environment for Crystal Shrimp?
  3. How to cycle a tank ?
  4. How to maintain a proper environment of a shrimp tank?
  5. How to raise Crystal Shrimp ?
  6. How to select the best Crystal Shrimp ?
  7. What does F1 F2 F3 F4… mean ?
  8. What is a Pure Line ? ( Pure Red Line, Pure Black Line )

What are the best conditions to keep Crystal Shrimp?

Crystal Shrimp is a type of pet that is very demanding of the water parameters. They are very sensitive to the different toxins that are present in the water, such as Ammonia, heavy metals, or other trace chemicals.

Below is the best suitable parameters per MK-BREED
PH : 6-6.5
GH : 2-4
KH : 1-2
Temp 73 ~ 78F

Best temperature for breeding 77F.  High temperatures will reduce the lifespan of the shrimps, lower temperatures increases the amount of dissolved oxygen, and higher temperature reduces the amount of dissolved oxygen.  Although keeping shrimps in lower temperature helps prolong their life, it’ll decrease their appetite and breeding rate.  The 3 most important parameters are PH, GH, and KH.  These 3 are the main deciding factors in establishing optimal parameters for the shrimps.  Maintaining stable parameters is one of the most important aspects in keeping shrimp.

How to setup a tank that’s suitable for Crystal Shrimp?

There are many ways to raise Crystal Shrimp, from the original wild bee shrimp that started in Japan and Europe, keeping of Crystal Shrimps has evolved over the past 10~12 years. Although there’s been many evolutions of methods, it always involves the 2 main factors, clear water, and suitable substrate.

Here is how MK-BREED keeps Crystal Shrimp:
Equipment :
  1. Tank: 40 Gallons or 20 Gallons
  2. Filtration: 2 canister filter Medium size, common type are Eheim.
  3. Media: Ceramic Ball / Bio Ball that comes with the canister filter
  4. Lighting: HQI or LED
  5. RO Filter

Products used while setting up:

  1. Substrate, 40g tanks use 2 bags of 9L, 20g tanks use 1 & 1/3 bag of 9l substrate.
  2. 35 grams of MK-BREED Z-Silver Powder ( nitrifying bacteria blend )
  3. 10 grams of MK-BREED Gold Powder ( micro organism powder)
  4. 10 pieces of MK-BREED LIFE BALL
  5. Adjusting GH & TDS with MK-BREED BLOOD DIAMOND & MK-BREED BLUE DIAMOND
  6. Moss or other aquatic plants

How to setup a tank that’s suitable for Crystal Shrimp?

We mentioned before the ideal parameters for the shrimps are PH: 6-6.5, GH 2~4, KH 1~2, Temp 73~78. After layering down the substrate and nitrifying bacteria, we fill the tank with pure RO water, adjust the water to the desired parameters, and enter the tank cycling stage.

 

 

What does cycling the tank mean ? Cycling is the waiting period for a tank to establish a nitrifying cycle. A nitrifying cycle establishes the good bacteria that breaks down ammonia and other harmful toxins in the tank.  A tank with stable parameter and established nitrifying cycle is the same as us living in a comfortable environment. Sun light, air, water and land is what we need to survive, and the same goes for shrimps.  If the water parameters are not stable, or nitrifying cycle is not established, it will be difficult for the shrimps to survive in a hostile environment.

How to maintain proper parameter of the tank?

In order to keep the water parameters stable, the most important aspect is routine water changes and maintenance.  MK-BREED changes 1/4th of the water once a week with RO water that has it’s GH adjusted with MK-BREED BLUE DIAMOND.  During water change, MK-BREED BLOOD DIAMOND is added to strengthen the microorganism and promote biofilm.  After completing the maintenance, check to see if the shrimp are active and feeding normally. Also check to see if the moss or aquatic plants are growing normally, this can be another way to check the parameters inside the tank.

How to raise Crystal Shrimp?

Life cycle of Crystal Shrimp can be broken down into 3 stages.

Baby stage: In this stage, the shrimp are about 0.1~0.8cm, right after the babies are born, they do not show much color, only slight white. The red parts slowly changes from clear to orange, and finally to red. The first 1~3 weeks after birth when the shrimp molts the most, averaging 4~7 times per week.  During the stage where they are 0.1~0.5 cm, they are unable to consume manufactured food. They get their nutrients from the biofilm and microorganisms in the tank. When they are 0.6cm, they will start consuming manufactured food. This is their weakest stage, and survival rates will be low if the tank does not have a healthy established cycle, plenty of biofilm, and proper GH to promote healthy molting.

Juvi Stage ( young adult ): At the stage, the shrimp are about 0.8~1.5 cm. This is when Crystal Shrimp feed vigorously and must take in large amounts of nutrients. If they are unable to take in adequate nutrients, they might end up smaller in size, have shells that are not thick enough or discolored, and can even lead to underdeveloped ovaries and cause infertility of the females.  It is important to feed the juvies sufficiently with high protein and amino acids to promote healthy growth and provide proper micro nutrients and proper GH to promote healthy molting.

Adult: Adult shrimp are 1.6cm and up, as the shrimp enter the adult stage, they are also entering the breeding age. At this stage, males and females will start to have a different appearance. Females will start to have a rounder body, preparing themselves to hold eggs. Males will start to have a longer and more streamlined shape, to reduce drag while chasing after females when mating.  Females will start to develop a saddle, when they are fully mature, a unique scent is released to attract males. The scent released is especially strong when the female molts after having a fully developed saddle, this will cause male shrimp to swim around rapidly in search of the female, also known as the “ mating dance “ During this stage, female shrimp require plenty of nutrients, minerals, and amino acids to promote healthy development and growth of the saddle, male shrimps also require plenty of nutrients to have enough energy to chase after the female during mating. The more well developed the saddle is, the more eggs it'll hold. This is also the last chance the shrimp have to increase their redness. A balanced diet will increase the likelihood that the best genes are passed onto the next generation.

Optimal male to female ratio of a breeding tank 

MK-BREED suggesting keeping a ratio of 1 male for every 3~5 females, the reason for the ratio is because:

  1. Prevents female death from being exhausted because of being chased by multiple males.
  2. MK-BREED believes that under the genetics principal of Crystal Shrimps, the thickness of the shell and size of body comes from the males, also size is passed on by males, so MK-BREED pays special attention in selecting quality males for breeding.

In larger scale breeding, the ratio is 10 males to 50 females, or 8 males to 30 females. 

9 traits that MK-BREED looks for while selecting shrimp.

  1. Thickness of the body shell
  2. Redness of the legs, solid red legs tip to tip
  3. Redness of head and red pattern
  4. Tightness of abdomen shell, no space between segments
  5. Pattern of the spots, large perfect circle shape
  6. Overall size of the shrimp
  7. Shape of the tail
  8. Color of the swimmers
  9. Color of the lips

 

 F1 F2 F3 F4 ……?

F1, F2, F3, F4, is a name we give to the offspring of shrimp that are born from parents of different blood lines. For example, the offspring from A and B will be called F1 ( unstable gene ). The offspring of F1 male mixed with A or B female is called F2 ( slightly stable gene ) F2 male mixed with F1 female or F2 female will be called F3 ( more stable gene ). F3 male mixed with F2 or F3 female will be called F4 ( stable gene ). 

Why is F4 the most stable?

The basic of genetic algorithms was first proposed by Professor Holland of the Michigan University in 1975,  It is based on the principle of natural selection and the survival of the fittest. So if genetic traits carried are what you desire, the characteristics shown on the organism is also optimal.

Using the genetic algorithm for selective breeding:

1:  Keeping the most desirable traits from the parents and passing it onto the offspring, not losing the traits in the offspring.

2. Mating: All genes are randomly selected between two of the most elite male and female generations and part of the genetic info is exchanged. With the accumulation of the desired genetic information, we hope to achieve superior offspring.

3. Mutation: All genes randomly selected from one elite female generation, randomly selected point mutation, by changing the value of this elite female generation mutation point, we look forward to a better mutation of a new offspring .

Upon completion of the above three methods, the desirable genes retained participate evolution produce new offspring of the next batch, and the remaining poor genes were eliminated, this method is called "Eugenics Strategy", which can guarantee the offspring will be better than the previous generation.  

Using this method, MK-BREED was able to pass on 57% of the most desirable shell pattern traits in the F4 generation.

What are PRL, PBL?

PRL : Pure red lineage

PBL : Pure black lineage

There’s 2 types of  "Pure Line Shrimp".  1st type is shrimp that are not mixed with any different types, does not produce any golden bee or colors that are different than the parents. 2nd type is shrimp that are not mixed with any different types, offspring produced are exactly the same as parents.  However, after many years of breeding and discussion, it is concluded among all the breeders around the world that type 2 is difficult to verify and therefore is not a true pure line.

The real fun in shrimp keeping starts when you start breeding the traits you love. MK-BREED’s suggestion for everyone, is learn how to successfully raise shrimp from baby to adults, followed by successful breeding and and finally selectively breeding the desirable traits.

https://www.facebook.com/mkbreed

 

Youtube video available thanks to SCAPE club

 

 

 


About MK-BREED CRS Center and MK-BREED products January 30 2015, 0 Comments

The best products to help you maintain a healthy and productive shrimp tank all available right here on Discobee.

1.  More than 70% of the MK-BREED products are manufactured using certified food grade ingredients derived from all natural organic source. Most of the other products on the market are made with lower feed grade ingredients.

2.  MK-BREED food products are handmade in small batches using low temperature curing processes to ensure maximum preservation of all nutrients. More than 85% of the nutrients are retained, and the powder is very fine, ensuring the uptake of foods by baby and juvi shrimps by 60%

3.  MK-BREED food products are made from vegetable protein sources. Plant proteins have a 200% more absorption rate when compared to animal protein. The smaller molecular size of the plant proteins are more suitable for shrimp who has simple digestive system.

4.  The MK-BREED nitrifying bacteria blends and other powders are manufactured in collaboration with a professional biotech company specially designed for crystal shrimps. Thus It is much better product than many of the mass produced bacteria blends.

5.  All of the MK-BREED products from development, to production and through manufacturing are all made in Taiwan with the highest standards.

1.  Marcus Hafermann Brilliant-Bees, winner of many European competitions introduced MK-BREED products to the European market in 2013. Marcus is also the winner of the 2014 competition in Germany. Not only is he a distributor of MK-BREED products, he also uses the full line of products himself. MK-BREED products has gained popularity within Europe very quickly, and is now also used by Mario Podera of Germany, and Waldemar Kolecki Garnella of Poland.

2.  MK-BREED entered the Japanese region in 2014. Brought in by well known breeder CRIMSON JAPAN. This is one of the only times that CRIMSON JAPAN brought in products that’s not their own, or made in Japan. The acceptance of MK-BREED products into Japan by CRIMON signifies the importance of the product.

3.  MK-BREED entered the Canada market by Randy Lei in 2013.

4.  MK-BREED 2015....DiscoBee adds MK-BREED to its hugely successful line of top quality products!

 

MK-BREED BLUE DIAMOND

MK-BREED Blue Diamond is made from extract of clean nature seawater. This extract is then processed with special techniques to remove the harmful heavy metal and to preserve the potent minerals and trace elements by special ion exchange process. This product contains calcium, Magnesium, Sodium, potassium, iron, zinc, copper, manganese, and many other minerals and trace elements. This product satisfies complete mineral and trace element demands for aquatic animals and is suitable for animals and plants in both freshwater and saltwater. It works particularly well for aquatic plants and crustaceans and will increase rearing/survival rate and reduce molting issues in crustaceans. This product will also enhance the thickness and color of crustacean exoskeleton.

Usage:
adding 10ml into 100 liters (~25 gallons) will increase roughly 1-1.3dGH.

Note
Not for human consumption, keep away from the reach of children.
If this product is splashed into eye(s), flush eye(s) with clean water.
Store in cool and dry places away from direct sunlight.
Content: 250 ml, 500ml or greater also available upon special request.
Made in Taiwan

MK-BREED BLOOD DIAMOND

MK-BREED Blood Diamond is made from high concentration of mineral, multi-vitamins, and chitin to increase the effective mineral content in aquarium environment. When combined with the use of MK-BREED Z-Silver Powder, they can rapidly create the micro biotic system and balanced mineral content in aquarium environment that supplies the complete demands of mineral, nutrients, and vitamins for aquatic lives. This product will improve the growth of aquatic animal and maintain the balance in the environment. The chitin and other minerals in this product will provide the necessary nutrients for healthy molting, metabolism, and breeding. They will also increase the effectiveness of food intake and help the digest system. This product also controls and reduces the growth of fungus and increases disease resistance.

Usage:
For new tank setup, add 10 ml for every 100 liters (~25 gallons) of water. For maintenance, add 10 ml to 100 liters (~25 gallons) of water weekly. For water changes, add 10 ml in every 20 liters (~5 gallons) of new water. Use half dosage for saltwater applications. Avoid overdosing.

Note
Not for human consumption, keep away from the reach of children.
If this product is splashed into eye(s), flush eye(s) with clean water.
Store in cool and dry places away from direct sunlight.
Content: 250 ml, 500ml or greater also available upon special request.
Made in Taiwan

MK-BREED Z-Silver Powder

Product Features
1. MK-BREED Z Fortified Nitrifying Bacteria and Probiotic removes ammonia, NO2, NO3, and other toxic elements from tank water, it also breaks down organic matters in water such as leftover food and fish/shrimp feces.
2. With this product, the biological filtration can starts as early as within the first 36 hours in a new tank, it greatly reduces the time required to establish the nitrifying system.
3. This product helps the good plankton to multiply in tank water, stabilizes algae growth, and establishes the beneficial bacteria and microorganism in aquarium environment.
4. This product reduces the B.O.D. (Biochemical Oxygen Demand) in tank, increases dissolved oxygen level in water.
5. This product prevents algae boom, and replenishes lost beneficial bacteria.
6. This product prevents substrate acidification and breaks down organic matters in your substrate, it further maximizes substrate lifespan.
7. This product can be use for both freshwater and saltwater aquariums.

Product Instructions
1. Take some water from tank with a small container, add this product in the container. Stir quickly to mix the powder completely into water. This helps to activate the dormant state bacteria in this product. Then pour into tank. Alternatively, you can spread the powder evenly in tank and increase the aeration.
2. One bottle of this product can be used for 300 liters (~80 gallons) of water.
3. To help the bacteria reproduction, please maintain at least 2ppm of dissolved oxygen.

Main Effectiveness
1. Increase immunity to Aeromonas hydrophila.
2. Increase survival rate of shrimps in early stages.
3. Increase survival rate after Vibrio infection.
4. Reduce the strength and fatality of Vibrio.
5. Maintain the superiority of beneficial bacteria, also maintain proper algae and microorganism growth.

Composition
Nitrobacter , Nitrifying bacteria , Bacillus Subtitis Natto , Lactobacillus Faecalis , Photosynthetic Bacteria and etc ,Lactobacillus, Yeast, Bacillus natto, Bacillus microorganisms in a variety of beneficial bacteria.

Note
1. Do not use antibiotics or chemicals 5-7 days before and after the use of this product.
2. Seal this product properly while stored in cool and dry places.
3. It is recommended to finish the whole bottle in one application after it is opened.

MK-BREED Golden Powder

Product Features
1.This is Microorganism Fermentation item, and it has enzyme effect. This item will help Red Bee Shrimp to digest and absorb the nutrient.
2.Contain with high unit of vitamins, minerals, amino acid, and chitin to maintain the entire digestive system.
3.Increase the larva and adult shrimp to cast the shell.
4.Improve the immunity and cell activation to prevent any disease and raise the resistance.
5.Increase probiotics, alga stabilization, steady the water quality, decompose the organic materials in water tank, and decrease the ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, nitrous acid and additional harmful gas. Reduce the mud and extend the using time of black soil.
6.Effectively help the larva to grow up rapidly. Provide sustenance to the larva needed.

Instructions
To quickly to improve the water quality, dose once a week with 1 standard spoon.
Daily use, once every 2 weeks with 1 standard spoon.

Composition
lactic acid bacteria, yeast, Bacillus subtilis, grass bacillus, chitin, vitamins, minerals, and amino acid.

Note
Do not over feeding and avoid unnecessary waste
After using, please close the zip properly and to avoid the moisture.

 MK-BREED RED DIAMOND

Product Speciality: 

Made from only natural raw ingredients, this product is designed as what Japanese call the "Set Meal"– food with high and comprehensive nutrition value. This product enhances the color pigmentation on Crystal Red Shrimps, increases growth rate, and speeds up ovary development. It contains many types of vitamins, amino acid, high unit of astaxanthin, seaweed, organic spinach, soybean protein, various minerals, added calcium, probiotics, brewers’ yeast, and chitin. It effectively increases the thickness of shrimp shell and the intense white pigmentation. 

Using strictly selected probiotics and natural brewers’ yeast, this product improves the digestive system and internal probiotic environment, effectively boosts the immunity system and survival rate. The ingredients are made into very fine particles before processing, this enables both adult and baby shrimps to feed on this product. This product has high palatability, and is efficiently absorbed by shrimps of various stages. No artificial food flavoring is added to this product. 

 
Feeding Instructions
Feed proper amount daily, three to four times a week. Use other MK-Breed shrimp food for the rest of the week to achieve a balance and comprehensive nutrient intake for shrimps.
This product contains only natural ingredients and no artificial additive. Special processing is done to minimize water pollution.
 
Note
This product is used for ornamental shrimps; please do not overfeed to avoid wasting. Make sure zip lock is sealed properly after each use to avoid moisture. Store in cool place without direct sunlight, you can also store in refrigerator to keep it fresh. Finish the product within one year from the date the package is opened.
 
Guaranteed Analysis
Protein 42% minimum
Crude Fat 5% minimum
Crude Fiber 15% maximum
Ash 8% maximum
Moisture 5% maximum

MK-BREED BLACK DIAMOND

 

Product Speciality:
This product is specially designed for Taiwan bees with black and/or blue colors. In addition to high and complete nutrition value, various special mineral and vitamins are added to the product to enhance the black and blue color pigmentation. It also improves overall growth and ovary development. It contains many types of vitamins, amino acid, high unit of astaxanthin, seaweed, organic spinach, soybean protein, various minerals, added calcium, probiotics, brewers’ yeast, and chitin. It improves digestive system efficiency and internal probiotic environment. This product effectively boosts immunity system and increases survival rate. The ingredients are made into very fine particles before processing, this enables both adult and baby shrimps to feed on this product. This product has high palatability, and is efficiently absorbed by shrimps of various stages. No artificial food flavoring is added to this product.

Feeding Instructions
Feed proper amount daily, three to four times a week. Use other MK-Breed shrimp food for the rest of the week to achieve a balance and comprehensive nutrient intake for shrimps.
This product contains only natural ingredients and no artificial additive. Special processing is done to minimize water pollution.

Note
This product is used for ornamental shrimps; please do not overfeed to avoid wasting. Make sure zip lock is sealed properly after each use to avoid moisture. Store in cool place without direct sunlight, you can also store in refrigerator to keep it fresh. Finish the product within one year from the date the package is opened.

Guaranteed Analysis
Protein 45% minimum
Crude Fat 7% minimum
Crude Fiber 18% maximum
Ash 8% maximum
Moisture 5% maximum

MK-BREED LIFE BALL

Product Specialty:
This product reduces the ammonia in water, prevents growth of blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), and effectively maintains a stable PH aquarium environment.
Contains more than 30 different minerals; it can effectively improve the mineral/trace element deficiency in aquatic animals/plants and promotes aquatic animals to be more active. The highly porous surface traps harmful substances in water to improve the general water quality.

Usage Instructions:
Use 10 MK-BREED Life Balls in 100-150 liters of water.
Use 5 – 8 MK-BREED Life Balls in water less than 100 literes.

Note:
Store in a cool and dry place.
Guaranteed Analysis:
Tourmaline, Maifanite, and more than 30 different minerals.

10 Life Balls per tube

MK-BREED BABY FOOD

Product Features
This product contains a variety of grain products, seaweed, spirulina, Lecithin, amino acid, and multi-vitamins and is made into very fine powder with high palatability. Specifically designed for baby shrimps, this product helps the nutrient intake and provides a balanced nutrition for baby shrimps’ need.

Feeding Instructions
This product is made of natural ingredients and contains no artificial additives, it does not pollute the water. One to two flat spoons per day per 60cm tank is recommended, you can adjust the amount by the number of shrimps in tank.

Note
This product is used for ornamental shrimps; please do not overfeed to avoid wasting. Make sure zip lock is sealed properly after each use to avoid moisture. Store in cool place without direct sunlight, you can also store in refrigerator to keep it fresh. Finish the product within one year from the date the package is opened.

Guaranteed Analysis
Protein 50% minimum
Crude Fat 7% minimum
Crude Fiber 12% maximum
Ash 8% maximum
Moisture 2% maximum

MK-BREED WHITE CRYSTAL

Product Features
Specifically designed for Growth of crystal shrimp, this product contains only natural ingredients.
MK-Breed White Crystal contains many highly nutritious ingredients : natural Japanese spirulina, high quality protein extracted from natural seaweed, amino acids, high quality multivitamins and probiotics, minerals, and brewers' yeast.
The added probiotics specially formulated by MK-Breed will improve the digestive system, and shrimps’ food intake utilization. These are important for the growth and survival of shrimps in early stage to adulthood.
This product has high palatability, and is efficiently absorbed by adult and juvenile shrimps. No artificial food flavoring is added to this product.

Feeding Instructions
Feed proper amount daily, three to four times a week. Use other MK-Breed shrimp food for the rest of the week to achieve a balance and comprehensive nutrient intake for shrimps.

This product contains only natural ingredients and no artificial additive. Special processing is done to minimize water pollution.

Note
This product is used for ornamental shrimps; please do not overfeed to avoid wasting. Make sure zip lock is sealed properly after each use to avoid moisture. Store in cool place without direct sunlight, you can also store in refrigerator to keep it fresh. Finish the product within one year from the date the package is opened.

Guaranteed Analysis
Protein 48% minimum
Crude Fat 5% minimum
Crude Fiber 12% maximum
Ash 8% maximum

MK-BREED CHEESEBURGER

Product Features
1. Designed specifically for bee shrimps and other dwarf shrimp species, high in nutrition value and palatability.
2. Containing organic spirulina, organic ashitaba, amino acids, Vitamin B complex, UGF (Unknown Growth Factors) from yeast extract.
3. With added chitosan, cholesterol, and multi-vitamin to promote growth, reproduction, enhance shrimp colour, and prevent lethargic condition.
4. Increased probiotics activity aiding food utilization and boosting immunity. Minimizing fouling water.

Feeding Instructions
Feed proper amount daily, three to four times a week. Use other MK-Breed shrimp food for the rest of the week to achieve a balance and comprehensive nutrient intake for shrimps.

This product contains only natural ingredients and no artificial additive. Special processing is done to minimize water pollution.

Note
This product is used for ornamental shrimps; please do not overfeed to avoid wasting. Make sure zip lock is sealed properly after each use to avoid moisture. Store in cool place without direct sunlight, you can also store in refrigerator to keep it fresh. Finish the product within one year from the date the package is opened.

Guaranteed Analysis
Protein 48% minimum
Crude Fat 5% minimum
Crude Fiber 12% maximum
Ash 8% maximum
Moisture 5% maximum

Thank you from MK-BREED and DiscoBee

 


Quarantining dwarf shrimp before selling. November 04 2014, 0 Comments

This article was written by ShrimpBay, but applies to all shrimp importers/sellers in all countries.

Here at ShrimpBay we take every step to provide healthy disease free shrimp. Due to the new massive demand for shrimp, new businesses are popping up left right and centre. It is now all to common for new businesses to import cheap low quality shrimp from outside of Europe to sell at a reduced price. However as we have found, this has led to mass die offs and possible introduction of bacterial infection and disease into the UK shrimp scene. This is why it is so important that businesses only use quality and recognised shrimp suppliers. Even following these steps quarantine is absolutely essential! 

When a shrimp is imported many factors will impact on the health of the shrimp. Unfortunately if a shrimp is 'damaged' its fate is generally sealed and will most definitely die within 30 days. To begin I will start with the basics. When a shrimp is imported from either Europe or even further afield it will have already gone through the stress of being taken from its original habitat (well an aquarium its already used to) and put in a bag usually with another two - three hundred other shrimp. These are then packaged with multiple other bags with anything up to 2000 shrimp per box. These shrimp will usually be in transit for 3-5 days. Businesses will usually expect a D.O.A (dead on arrival) rate of around twenty percent. When the shrimps arrive they are extremely stressed and the business owner will commonly experience deaths for the next couple of days. The reason businesses experience this is because of the sheer volume of shrimp they import. 

At this point a experienced businesses will put the shrimp into quarantine for a week minimum and even more if imported from outside the EU. This is because the shrimp are already stressed and any shrimp sent out at this point will not survive further stress (although they may arrive looking healthy, it is very much the opposite). These shrimp will usually die over the next few days. 

On top of this introducing a shrimp to multiple new water parameters in a short period of time will also cause fatalities. The 'lucky' few who may survive can experience issues such as infertility, infection and disease.

One big thing I have 'seen' (not literally) lately is the invisible killer; Infection and disease. Shrimp which are stressed and kept in poor conditions will commonly contract bacterial infections which can be passed onto their tank mates. This is often the reason someone with perfect water parameters will see one or two of their shrimp die off each day. Bacterial infections can even wipe out an entire population in less than 24 hours in extreme cases! A bacterial infection cannot be detected so most businesses will blame it on the customer’s water parameters. However these businesses will be experiencing the same issues and will commonly lower prices of the worse effected shrimp. This will allow for a high turnover for the seller with their customers experiencing the deaths while they experience the profits!

Disease is one of the most dangerous aspects from a seller importing. This related to the recent outbreak of EMS (Early Mortality Rate). This recently wiped out millions of shrimp from around the globe and unfortunately once a shrimp has been infected, the shrimp and their tank mate’s fates are sealed. Shrimp farms in Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, China etc have been severely affected by EMS and some seem to be taking drastic measures to sell on their shrimp to a business looking for a bargain price. The disease affects all shrimp from Cherry shrimp to Taiwan bees and from young to adults. Unfortunately businesses are taking advantage of the 'bargain' prices offered by desperate oversees exporters and raking in huge profits while 'exterminating' entire populations of shrimp in customers aquariums.

However please do not be put of keeping your own shrimp. If businesses follow simple guidelines we can all work together to increase the popularity of shrimp keeping in the UK. The difference we find between poor quality shrimp businesses and those at the top are, and always will be.. The hobby! Shrimp keeping is first and foremost a hobby, most sellers enjoy keeping their shrimp as much as the pride they get from being able to supply other people in the UK with these beautiful creatures. Information on quality shrimp sellers is all over the internet. The key is to do your research, find someone who has bought from that person and ask them about their experience. Remember paying slightly more for a healthy shrimp is still better than paying less for a dead one. HAPPY SHRIMPING!


Benefits of leaf litter in dwarf shrimp tanks November 04 2014, 0 Comments

The best products to help you maintain a healthy and productive dwarf shrimp tank all available right here on Discobee

The following was written by Julie Lightfoot. Check out her Facebook page, Shrimp and Scape.

Many of the shrimp we keep originate from mountain streams in South East Asia.  These streams are often flanked by overhanging trees and bushes, so the shrimp’s natural environment contains lots of fallen leaf litter and plant material, which eventually settles on the stream bed.  It is in these areas they are most concentrated.  When large amounts of tannin rich plant material end up in a slow flowing river, they create a type of habitat commonly referred to as blackwater.  As Part of the natural biodegrading process, these leaves quickly become covered in micro-organisms or biofilm (sometimes visible as a faint white slime film) and it’s this layer that the shrimp love to graze on.  These biofilms are hugely beneficial to adult and especially baby shrimp as they help provide a balanced diet and being a complex mix of good bacteria, proteins and vitamins, they are extremely important in helping to build the shrimp’s immune system.

Dried leaves etc offer a surface that biofilm can quickly populate and thrive on.

When they soften and start to break down, the shrimp will eat the leaves etc right down to the skeleton, this provides a nutritional food source.

Benefits:

As well as providing biofilm and natural food, dried leaves also contain tannins and humic acids which leach into the water having beneficial properties including anti-bacterial and anti-fungal.  They can help promote good health and color, stimulate breeding, reduce stress and aid in the molting process.  Tannins are what give blackwater rivers their characteristic tea-color appearance and low pH value.  Although the leaves will lower pH of your tank, you would need to use more than the standard dosage quantities recommend for shrimp tanks to have any real effect.

There are benefits to using more than one type of dried leaf in your tank at the same time.  Some leaves provide different beneficial properties than others, they break down at different rates and so there will be a constant source of natural food in your tank and you are also providing a varied diet for your shrimp.

Why Dried Leaves?

It is better to use dried leaves that have fallen naturally from a tree.  The reason for this is that these leaves will be depleted of chlorophyll, sugars, sap and etc through a natural process and as such will not decompose in the tank and foul the water, as fresh or wind fallen leaves might.  Aslo the beneficial properties of the leaf litter comes from the tannins and humic acids that are naturally present in ‘dead’ leaves.

Selecting Leaves:

The main consideration when adding leaves to your tank is to ensure they are free from pollutants, pesticides, and/or harmful chemicals.  Therefore leaves that have been specially prepared for aquatic use are best, as these are harvested well away from towns or city areas.

 

The following five paragraphs contain more information on the benefits of specific dried leaves.

 

Indian Almond Leaves / Catappa Leaves

Benefits of using IAL / Catappa leaves in your shrimp tank:

  • Creates a natural water environment for freshwater shrimp
  • Enhances the natural color
  • Provides biofilm grazing
  • Aids the molting process, helping reduce mortality rate during this stage
  • Contains acids and tannins which have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, preventing bacteria and diseases
  • Stimulates breeding
  • Relieves stress
  • Mildly reduces pH

Indian Almond Leaves / Catappa Leaves have also long been used in home remedies as well as in aquariums.  They are used to treat a variety of ailments in a number of countries around the world, included scabies and leprosy in India, internal parasites in the Philippines and colic in South America.  So they are widely recognized as possessing excellent medicinal properties.

 

Mulberry Leaves

Benefits of using Mulberry leaves in your shrimp tank:

  • Excellent source of natural food for shrimp
  • High in carbohydrate, fiber, vitamins and minerals
  • Helps to maintain shrimp exoskeleton
  • Aids the molting process

Mulberry leaves are essentially a food source to be fed as part of a varied diet.  They soften quickly and will be devoured within a couple days.

 

Guava Leaves

Benefits of using Guava leaves in your shrimp tank:

  • Have anti-bacterial properties
  • Help to prevent diseases such as Vibrio and Luminous Bacteria
  • Great source of food for shrimp

Guava leaves soften much more slowly than other dried leaves and do not break down as quickly, therefore these leaves will not require replacing/removing as frequently.

 

Banana Leaves

Benefits of using Banana leaves in your shrimp tank:

  • Reduces the risk of bacterial and fungal outbreaks
  • Provides great natural cover
  • Provides biofilm grazing
  • Stimulates breeding
  • Relieves stress
  • Mildly reduces pH

Banana leaves have been used by tropical fish breeders in Asia to great effect for many years.  However, they have only more recently become popular for aquatic use in Europe, the UK and USA.

 

Indian Almond Bark / Catappa Bark

Benefits of using IAL Bark / Catappa Bark in your shrimp tank:

  • Creates a natural water environment for freshwater shrimp
  • Enhances the natural color
  • Aids the molting process, greatly reducing mortality rate during this stage
  • Contains acids and tannins which have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties preventing bacteria and diseases
  • Stimulates breeding
  • Relieves stress
  • Reduces pH

IAL / Catappa Bark has strong healing and anti-bacterial properties and is used in many countries for medicinal purposes, such as in Mexico for asthma, Indonesia for rheumatic pain and Brazil as a folk remedy for fever and dysentery. 

IAL/ Catappa Bark is more concentrated than the leaves and is a greater product for producing blackwater extract.

 

Alder Cones

Benefits of using Alder Cones in your shrimp tank:

  • Creates a natural water environment for freshwater shrimp
  • Provides biofilm grazing
  • Contains acids and tannins which have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties
  • Stimulates breeding
  • Relieves stress
  • Reduces pH

Alder cones break down at a slower rate than leaves so will not require replacing / removing as frequently. 

Alder cones are widely available in many countries.  If you collect your own, ensure they are collected away from pollutants and pesticides etc.  Otherwise you should buy from a trusted seller.

 

There are a variety of other dried leaves that shrimp keepers can use to similar effect to those mentioned, such as fallen hardwood leaves like Oak or Ash or dried fruit leaves such as peach as a food source.

Again, the main consideration when adding dried leaves to your tank is to ensure they are free from pollutants, pesticides and/or harmful chemicals.

Most of the products mentioned above are available from the Tantora Shrimp Series range of natural food and water conditioning products. 

This range of products offer a natural solution for shrimp keeping.  Products are grown and harvested away from town or city areas so therefore free from pollutants.

These leaves are carefully selected, harvested and prepared for safe use in your shrimp tank.