Freshwater Aquarium Shrimps For Your Nature Aquarium


Freshwater aquarium shrimps are very useful in nature aquariums. They give some essential benefits that can make your fresh water aquarium move to a higher level of hobby.

Breeding and using shrimps in aquarium has become popular when Takashi Amano a renowned photographer and aquarist used Caridina multidentata in his aquarium projects. Since then many people adopted the idea and studied other shrimp species if they can be equally useful as the Amano shrimp.

I listed below some of these useful benefits:

1. Biological Filters – Shrimps are generally scavengers. They eat fish wastes even dead fishes and fish food wastes in the absence of their natural food. They can be a good part of the mini ecosystem inside your precious aquarium.

2. Aquarium Ornaments – Shrimps are beautiful to look at, especially if you have the fancy shrimps. A couple of good examples of beautiful shrimps are the Red Cherry Shrimps and Harlequin Shrimp.

In fact, many aquarists nowadays agree that keeping shrimps in fresh water aquarium is equally beautiful in keeping fresh water fishes.

3. Algae Controllers – Shrimps are also excellent algae controllers. Many of them are tiny algae-hungry shrimps. Prime example is the Caridina multidentata or popularly known as the “Amano shrimp”.

4. Source of Additional Income – Keeping breeding shrimps are becoming more and more popular, but there is still a huge market for these aqua species. If you can produce healthy shrimps, I am sure that they can become a little bit expensive at times than selling aquarium fishes.

Where can you find shrimps for your aquarium?

There are several sources of freshwater aquarium shrimps that you can check out. But I must say that not all shrimps are readily available everywhere.

4 Main Sources of Shrimps

1. Pet stores – Pet stores are still the primary source of shrimps. Most of them were breed by pet shop owners. However, not all pet shops breed and sell shrimps. It would be best if you will visit pet shop centres. They most likely have the shrimp that you are looking for. Furthermore, most local pet stores do not breed shrimps.

2. Online pet shops – Some online pet shops sell shrimps and they will even deliver it to your doorstep. All you have to do is to order online. This is probably the easiest way to get one

3. Online forums – If you are an aquarist, it would be best if you engage yourself on online forums. Most of your forum mates are professional aquarists and some may have bred several kinds of shrimps. Some of them will even send you an email selling you what you need.

4. Wild – If you feel like an adventurer, why not visit rivers. You will most likely see various kinds of shrimps. Use a net to avoid hurting them when you capture them.

Below are just some of the available shrimps online.

Freshwater aquarium shrimp Lysmata wurdemanni/rathbunae “Peppermint Shrimp” – Small 

Peppermint Shrimp ( Lysmata wurdemanni and Lysmata rathbunae ) are active parasite cleaners as well as scavengers of meaty foods. They are nearly transparent with red or pink vein-like patterns on their body. These shrimp are well-known and popular for controlling the nuisance anemone known as Aiptasia . These shrimp will typically hunt out and eat these anemones and can help in keeping their populations under control. Although Lysmata wurdemanni is the most common Peppermint Shrimp found in the Caribbean, Lysmata rathbunae is an almost-identical species that is sometimes collected and sold as or with L. wurdemanni . Both have essentially the same requirements and behavior and can be kept together in groups. “Cleaner” shrimp get their name from their habit of picking external parasites, dead scales and other irritants off of the surface of other fish. Some fish will actively seek out a cleaner shrimp to clean them while others can become irritates or stressed by the shrimp’s “good intentions”. Cleaner shrimp will also accept other foods like flakes, pellets, algaes, and frozen meaty foods as well as whatever they scavenge from their tank (or tankmates). Shrimp molt their hard outer skeleton to grow and it is not unusuall to find an empty molt in an aquarium with shrimp. Shrimp also can molt under environmental stress such as water changes, rapid changes in conditions or during shipping. Always acclimate shrimp slowly to avoid sudden changes in their environment. Crustaceans like shrimp need well-balanced minerals in their environment to form their shells, particularly iodine and calcium and low nitrate levels. Regular water changes with a quality salt mix are generally enough to replenish any minerals lost to normal environmental sources in the aquarium but supplements can be added to heavily stocked aquariums. This is a Restricted item and is not covered by our Arrive Alive 5 Day Guarantee. 208748


Caridina multidentata Caridina multidentata “Amano Shrimp” 

These tiny and amusing creatures are great for planted tanks. They will delicately remove and eat algae from your plant’s fragile leaves. They also clean up the surface of the gravel and are generally a lot of fun to watch. They are virtually harmless to fish, and only larger fish may attempt to nibble at them, so be careful with the sort of tankmates that these little guys will be coexisting with. They will pick at leftover food as well as algae. Keep up with your water quality as these shrimp can be sensitive to water conditions. This is a Restricted item and is not covered by our Arrive Alive 5 Day Guarantee.


Hymenocera picta Hymenocera picta “Harlequin Shrimp” – Medium 

Harlequin Shrimp ( Hymenocera picta ) are attractive little shrimp whose unique body shape resembles full orchid blossoms. They have frilly white bodies with pink and purple spots. The claws and eyes appear thin and flattened. Hymenocera elegans is very similar to Hymenocera picta and is sometimes considered a regional variation rather than a separate species since the two species are found in separate locations. This shrimp is highly specialized in its care and diet. They are reef safe and invert safe, except around starfish. Their diet consist exclusively of sea stars. They will feed on any sea stars in their aquarium and should be fed a healthy sea star at least once a month. They will eat the small Asterina stars that reproduce in some home aquariums, but otherwise stars like Chocolate Chip Stars, Bahama Stars or other species should be purchased for them to feed on. Harlequin Shrimp will usually star at the ends of the star’s legs and work towards the center so the starfish remains alive as long as possible. While these animals are very cryptic and can hide well, they should not be kept with larger potential predators. They are sensitive to changes in water chemistry, temperature and to low oxygen environments (including stagnant systems). Acclimate to the new system carefully to avoid shocking the shrimp. They can live alone but are almost always found in pairs in the wild. Some Hymenocera sp. shrimp are also known to occassionally feed on urchins as well as shrimp. This is a Restricted item and is not covered by our Arrive Alive 5 Day Guarantee.


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