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Hi all,

Getting to the aquarium world, but this time I would like to setup a desk tank for office entertainment. It will be small. Any suggestion on which tank I should buy, I am thinking all-in-one because they are more compact. Anything else I need to buy to setup this tank?

thx
 

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Just a Shrimper
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Ghost shrimps are not very demanding, all in one tanks should work well. Only thing I can think of is to ensure the water intake won't suck in shrimps. Not all ghost shrimps breed in freshwater, if the ones you get do breed in freshwater, they will probably be sucked into the filter. Depending on which type you get, it may be as easy as place a piece of filter floss on the inside of the water intake, but some are harder to do.
 

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If your talking about amanos, I'd go with at least a 10g, just for entertainment value. They move around a lot, and I never thought I'd use the word aggressive with shrimp, but these guys will steal big veggie wafers right out from under the corys. It's a show to watch them eat live worms. They seem to love flow and are big enough not to get sucked into a strong filter. They love plants, so if you can go with that on your desk, go for it.

I'm glad they don't breed in FW, they seem next to impossible to catch and to be honest I call them the a***oles of the tank because they would probably take over the tetras like a growing gang in the 'hood. They've been in two of my tanks almost 3 years now, and during the move one jumped out of the net, and must've been on the floor for 30min and survived.

Check out 'planet inverts'. (note to mod. Is it ok to mention another website?)

I always wanted to make a 10 or 20g with grey sand, a black background with a picture of the Earth from space, a 1/24th scale lunar landing module and some little astronauts plating an American flag. Let a dozen amanos loose and they'll look like aliens attacking. Or some model buildings and cars on a replicated street scape and it's the 'global warming, sea levels rising' tank.

Or some scale model shopping carts stuck halfway in the substrate and some metal drums and it's the 'don valley river environment'.

I bet the coral frag guys would know of a good non toxic glue.

We were talking about shrimp, right?
 

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I'm rather fond of ghost shrimp. The ones you buy locally here are almost always Palaemontetes, the American Ghost shrimp. Totally fresh water life cycle, not aggressive, very busy, active guys. Older shrimp get an orange colour to the shell, and dark streaks and dashes.

Some of them also have a brilliant vermillion orange wrist band and dash marks on the tail fans. Not all, but some, will have these. Not sure why they don't all have it, but at least one site I read said the orange bands are the true species, but did not explain what that meant for those without the colouration. Regardless, they all breed in fresh water. The other shrimps called Ghost are literally other species, so it's useful to find out the species you're getting, or the country of origin.

If you provide a lot of hiding spots, plants and some wood, and if you can manage some type of prefilter on the intake, you may get baby shrimp. The eggs float to the top when released, and hatch quickly. The zoeys, [ larvae], then take roughly four days to morph into shrimplets you can see.

Feeding the zoeys and new shrimplets is a bit of a challenge, especially in a new tank. Easy, but not cheap, is to get some liquid Phyto, the type used to feed corals, it will do the job for you, if you have a female let her eggs go. Just a teaspoon twice a day, and turn off the filter for an hour afterward so it won't get filtered out. This will feed zoeys and the first days for baby shrimplets if they appear.

They hang upside down at the surface for a few days before they start swimming freely and hunting for food. I fed mine banana worms and a few other things sized for these tiny creatures, but once they're moving around, they mainly feed on biofilm, which does take some months to grow in a new tank. This might just mean you would not get any babies surviving at first, but it's always possible you'd get one or two that survives. Or you'd have to provide some food. The phyto, or cultured liquid algae, helps build biofilm faster, and can be a substitute for it for a short time after shrimp morph.

I had at least a half dozen Ghost babies grow to adulthood in a 29G, with a load of fish and other critters, and a filter running flat out with no prefilter. Surprised me greatly, but there they were.

Amanos are also interesting, but since they must have brackish water for zoey survival, you won't get babies at all. Males and females have different markings, so you can tell them apart with a bit of practice. Ghost's only differences are that females are a bit bigger and rounder underneath, where males are straighter underneath and very slender. If you see a saddle or eggs, of course, it's a girl.

They live, at the very most, two years. More often, 12 - 18 months. They prefer cooler temperatures.. anywhere from 70F. Best larval survival seems to be around 72 or 74, and keeping temp's steady helps a lot. They don't much care for really tropical temps.

There are other things you can feed both larvae and shrimplets too. If you're interested, I can elaborate.
 
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