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Freshwater Aquarium/Poorly/dying shrimp


Please could you help me with my shrimp. I think he's been poisened by some new plants in the aquarium. We just got him a new friend to, who died very quickly. We've moved him to a tempoary tank but he's very unhappy, staying still on his side twitching his legs. We've had him for over 2 years and really don't want him to die. We rang petsathome but they just offered a refund, which really isn't the point. Is there anything I can do?

Any help or advise would be much appreciated.


ANSWER: Hello,

It was likely the plants if your parameters and everything are fine. Could there have been copper-based fertilizer introduced with the plants? Copper-based fertilizer or medicine is extremely harmful to shrimp, and that is one possible cause to consider. Also, plants are often treated with insecticides or are copper treated to prevent snails. It is always best to wash plants thoroughly before adding them to the tank. Too much CO2 can be harmful as well.

Does the tank you have him in now have plenty of surface agitation? If not, he could be acting lethargic because of low oxygen levels in the water.

Best regards,

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

All the water stats are right, although the ph is slightly high. We have a pump making plenty of bubbles etc. We've moved him to a smaller container with fresh water. Is there anything we can do if he has been poisoned? We've had him for ages and he has more personality than all the fish put together!



You could try removing the plants that you believe have caused the problem and clean the tank very well. I would vacuum extensively and do an 80% water change.

If water changes and removing the plants does not work, you could try this. Depending on what on the plants caused a problem, you might have to take apart the tank and set it back up. You would need to wash all of the equipment and the tank itself very well, and set it back up with new substrate and filter media.

Good luck!

Best regards,

Freshwater Aquarium

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Elizabeth Turbyfill


I am available to answer any questions regarding Betta fish and goldfish. I will be able to answer questions ranging from basic husbandry to health issues and more. I have a fair amount of knowledge regarding keeping freshwater fish in general as well, excluding cichlids. If you have any questions about species compatibility, maintenance, health issues, et cetera I can help. If there is a question that I do not know the answer to, I will look to reliable resources to find the answer.


I have kept numerous Betta fish and freshwater aquariums for several years, and have spent countless time researching them.

I am a member of a fish forum named Tropical Fish Keeping that I highly recommend to people who keep aquariums or just have complex questions that cannot be answered here.

I am currently attending East Tennessee State University for a bachelor's degree in Computer and Information Science.

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