Advanced Shrimp Tank Water Changes 2020

In today’s post I shall be going over all the water changes I do for every species of shrimp I have, it is worth noting I use reverse osmosis water and buffers and that you might not get the same results as I do if you use tap water, this is because there can be a massive variation in peoples tap water from person to person.


For the tap water people that read this, please age your water like usual and use a dechlorinator, you want to do a minimum volume of water change each week, and you want to add your elixir of life back in slowly to avoid stress, try to do 10% a week or less.


Now onto the advanced stuff, Let’s briefly talk about water preparation first because none of this matters if you don’t prepare your water correctly.

Reverse osmosis is how we get our water, this water is passed through several filters, including a:

1.sediment filter (A sediment filter acts as a sieve to remove tiny particles)

2.carbon filter (carbon to remove impurities like chemicals from a fluid using adsorption into small pores)

3. ro membrane (a water treatment process that removes contaminants from water by applying pressure to force water molecules through a semipermeable membrane)

4. DI resin ( stands for deionizing resin, all this does is remove ionized minerals from the water. I suppose you could call this a mineral filter of sorts)

Once the water has passed through all these filters, you should get a zero tds reading on your TDS meter.


If you do not use a DI resin stage, it is ok to have a slight TDS reading in your reverse osmosis water. You should consider changing these filters once the TDS reading climbs above 10ppm.

The RO membrane should last for at least four years or more, and the other filters need to be changed as much as once every 3-6 months, so remember and write the dates on the outside of each stage and when they were fitted.

Also, please remember to calibrate those TDS pens regularly, like at least once per month.

On to the good stuff, We then can use an array of buffers and measuring devices to magically make our water ideally suited for all our shrimp types.

All the buffers I use are mixed in with this fresh reverse osmosis water until we hit the desired number, tds is just a simple reading measuring the total dissolved solids.


Once you have hit the desired TDS for your specific shrimp species type, let the water sit for 24hr before using it, this allows the water to heat up and equalize itself as mains water may come out at a different ph than water that’s sat at room temperature.
Once you have done this, you can make up your water by adding a specially developed buffer to a specific TDS.
I will list the different species of shrimp that I have below and when and how much water I change for the different tank types.
Let’s get started.



Buffer, salty mineral GH/KH plus

TDS 190-200ppm

Temperature 24c

Water change amount: 5-10% every single day.

Crushed coral has to be used in this tank setup as it stabilizes ph when changing water; without doing this, you will see deaths and the white ring of death.


Bee Shrimp
Buffer, salty mineral GH plus
TDS 130ppm
Temperature 24c
Water change amount of 10% once a week.
I add fulvic and humic content back into the water because an active soil will absorb it and help keep it working for longer. If you have an active soil substrate and you add humic content back into the tank after a water change, and the color doesn’t clear after a few days, check your ph to see if the soil is still buffering, if it isn’t you have to change the earth.
You won’t have to do a water change as much as you do for neocaridina for a few reasons.
The first thing is active soils are more or less a filter that is continuously absorbing stuff, and this is because of its clay content.
The second reason is an active soil will have a low ph, these soils can be exhausted by changing to much water to frequently so keep the water changes small.
I dose humic and fulvic from glassgarten at a rate of 1ml per 50 liter tank.


Cardinal Sulawesi Shrimp

Buffer, Sulawesi 8.5 (I use a soda stream to mix it with co2 this helps dissolve it)

TDS 140ppm

Temperature 28c. Lower than this, and the shrimp will struggle.

Tiger shrimp are one shrimp I have found that can live in both soft and hard water and do as equally well.

My crayfish live in neocaridina parameters, as do my dwarf crayfish.

I do have an opae ula tank, and this never gets a water change. It only gets topped up with pure water.


Tips :

  1. Use coca-cola bottles filled up with hot water to heat your reverse osmosis water if its cold for some reason, 
  2. I don’t like to use heaters in reverse osmosis containers because eventually, I would forget to unplug the heater while doing a water change, and I would break the thing.
  3. Use crushed coral in neocaridina tanks. This lets you change more water and feed the shrimp more. (hard water only)
  4. Humic and fulvic content helps soft water shrimp absorb minerals and vitamins in the water faster (soft water)
  5. Dose Iron once you have done your water changes at this rate, 1ml per 50 liters of water. which should give you a dose of 0.02ppm in the tank depending on the solution strength (I will do a post and video for this) I have better plant and algae growth using iron. (all tanks)
  6. 0.2g of montmorillonite clay in your soft water tanks after a water change. (soft water)
  7. Add in your leaves and alder cones. (all tank types)

The next step would be to sit back, relax, and watch your shrimp breed.

Have an awesome day, and stay healthy.

Marks Shrimp Tanks.