Aqueon Shrimp Tank – A Review

I’ve been working in my fish room quite a bit the last few weeks, so much that I downloaded a Check List app to keep track of all the tasks I wanted to complete! More about all the changes later, but they do include two new tank additions.

One of those is the Aqueon Shrimp Tank. I saw it at one of my favorite local fish stores when I went to purchase my other new tank. They have one set up as a display, and I always enjoyed looking at it. I had never noticed they actually had a few for sale in the store until that day, so I requested one as an early Christmas gift and we went back the next day to get it!

The first thing you notice is the tank’s unique shape. I actually thought the curved front was a door and that the water level only went up to the bottom of it, but I was wrong. The water goes all the way to the top, and the tank is open on the very top. It does have a removable plastic lid that fits on top. I like the lid, but it does hold a lot of condensation underneath. The entire tank holds about 8.75 gallons of water.

The tank kit includes an LED light. The light has a white light and blue night light setting, and it’s easy to turn on with just a quick tap to the button on top. The kit also includes a hanging filter with media. The lid of the tank is reversible so that you can put the filter on the left or right side. The lid has a permanent cut-out for the filter. The kit also includes two bags of Aqueon’s shrimp and plant substrate and a small packet of water conditioner. I liked the design and intensity of the light so much that I bought a second one to use on another tank of mine.

The substrate was a nice addition, but the two bags are just enough to cover the bottom maybe a half inch. I would have preferred one more bag just to make it a bit deeper to hold down live plants. That being said, all the plants I did put in my tank have stayed in place other than the grass I planted in the front which I’ve had to replant a few times. The Aqueon substrate has a beaded shape to it and also a bit of a shine which makes it very decorative compared to the Fluval Stratum substrate that I use in my other tanks which is also pebble-like but has more of an actual dirt-like quality to it.

I immediately began cycling the tank with its included filter, but after a few days I realized I didn’t like how much space it took up inside the tank. I started searching for a different filter that I could hang on the outside instead. I went with a small version of the Dymax Slim Flo filter because I have a larger version on one of my other tanks and have been very happy with it. This was perfect! The only negative about this Dymax is the filter media pad is also very small and contains floss only.

While searching for a new filter, I learned that there are actually 4 sizes available of the Aqueon filter that was included. One is intended for a 3 gallon, one for a 10 gallon, one for a 20 gallon, and one for a 40 gallon. The one included with the shrimp tank is the 20 gallon version! This tank only holds 8.75 gallons so it would have made more sense had they included the 10 gallon version in the kit! This made me even more glad that I switched out the filtration.

One thing the kit did not include is a heater. Aqueon does offer a small heater that is ideal for these smaller tanks. I already had a heater so I added it. It fits nicely below the clamp of the light and the cord can be run up through the pre-cut hole in the lid intended for the clamp. You could also run it through the hole meant for the filter. Depending on where you sit the tank, you might not need a heater at all. Mine tank is in my basement, so I prefer use of the heater. I also added a black background to the back of the tank.

Overall, I like the tank, but I’m a fan of small boutique tanks, like this one, and nano size tanks anyway. Some reviews online mention the messy caulk work on the edges. I did notice some of that and it could have been better, but over the years I’ve noticed it on a lot of tanks. Knock on wood I’ve never had a single leak! Other than the filter, my only other complaint would be keeping that front curved piece of glass clean. Because of its angle, lots of dirt or loose leaves tend to collect at the front so I’m frequently wiping it down.

I stocked the tank with 10 orange rili shrimp. I also added some phoenix rasbora and Kubotai rasbora from one of my other nano tanks. Without fish, you could certainly get away with twice as many shrimp. If you do decide to add fish, keep them small and be mindful of the quantity. This tank would be perfect for a single betta.

I’m anxious for the plants to grow and fill in a bit, including the grass I planted up front. Here’s an image of my tank which has been running for almost a month now. Excuse the crooked image!

As you can see, I also added rocks and a few pieces of wood. The java fern in the back left came out of one of my other tanks, but all the other smaller plants and the grass are new. I’m happy with the set up and the shrimp and fish seem happy too.

More updates to come on this tank as it matures!

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