Re-mineralising rain/RO water
Shrimp are very picky – they like their water to have the right balance of minerals and trace elements.
If you have a tank that uses rainwater or RO water, then you will have to re-mineralise the water. I use Salty Shrimp (other brands are available) – every water change I put my TDS pen into my bucket of filtered rainwater and add the salt (with the supplied scoop) a little at a time to the desired level.
What is the desired level.
Each type of Salty Shrimp suggests going to a certain level of conductivity – which you can convert to TDS (see chart below) or a d (degrees hardness level).
You choose the type of salty shrimp according to the label e.g. some are specific to shrimps like Cherry shrimp and others are made for Salawesi shrimp.
I can never remember which ones are suited for which shrimp – so I made a chart!
Problems to figure out the dosage
- Most keepers re-mineralise to a TDS level. The first thing to notice is the tub uses a different unit of measurement – the unit for conductance, MicroSiemens.
- What I have noticed is that the tub suggests a microsiemen amount e.g. 270 for the one I use (which is around 173 (plus or minus 32) TDS). However it also says you can go to 6 degrees Hardness (dH) which is a TDS of 107.4
- Also consider that some shrimp keepers will just go to what they think is a good amount of TDS for their shrimp recommended from a shop or forum – e.g.220-240 is what I’ve heard several times and is what I chose.
- Lastly I have two types of shrimp in my tank (Tigers and Red Cherry variants). There are different powders for each of these! Cherry are supposed to settle in a range of TDS but Tigers prefer softer water and much lower TDS. That said, my Tigers have done well in a high TDS.