Beginner’s Guide To Red Cherry Shrimp Care

By FantasticFishTank Team

Are you new to the world of aquariums and looking for a low-maintenance and colorful addition to your tank? Look no further than the red cherry shrimp.

These small and ornamental freshwater shrimp are easy to care for and come in different color morphs. In this beginner’s guide to red cherry shrimp care, you will learn everything you need to know to keep your shrimp happy and healthy.

First, let’s start with the basics. Red cherry shrimp are native to Taiwan and can be found in streams and rivers throughout the country. These shrimp are hardy and adaptable, making them an ideal choice for beginner aquarists.

With proper care and attention, your red cherry shrimp can live for up to two years and provide endless hours of entertainment as you watch them dart around your tank. So, let’s dive in and learn more about how to care for these fascinating creatures.

Key Takeaways

  • Red cherry shrimp are easy to care for and make a great addition to a tank cleanup crew.
  • A 5-gallon tank with stable water conditions, plants, and a simple sponge filter is suitable for a breeding colony of cherry shrimp.
  • Cherry shrimp are hardy and can tolerate a wide range of water parameters, but avoid using tap water that’s been run through a water softening system.
  • Feeding cherry shrimp too much is not necessary, and commercially prepared foods, blanched veggies, and Dennerle Shrimp King products are suitable for their diet.

Species and Origin

Red Cherry Shrimp - Species and Origin

You may already know that red cherry shrimp are small freshwater shrimp that are easy to care for. However, did you know that they were selectively bred from wild Neocaridina davidi from Taiwan and were first introduced in the aquarium trade in the 1990s? Cherry shrimp were selectively bred for their vibrant red color and are available in different color morphs, but they’re all the same species.

Breeding habits played a significant role in the development of red cherry shrimp. Selective breeding techniques were used to create specific traits in the shrimp, such as color, size, and behavior. Cherry shrimp are hardy and can tolerate a wide range of water parameters, making them an ideal choice for beginner aquarists who want to try their hand at breeding shrimp.

Color Morphs

The different color morphs of these small freshwater crustaceans add a fun and vibrant touch to any aquarium. Red cherry shrimp are available in a variety of colors, including red, orange, yellow, blue, and green. These colors are the result of shrimp genetics, and selective breeding techniques have been used to produce different color morphs.

When breeding cherry shrimp, it’s important to consider genetics and color morphs. Breeding techniques such as line breeding and color selection can help produce offspring with desired traits, including color. Keep in mind that some color morphs may be more difficult to breed or may require specific water parameters.

It’s also important to avoid crossbreeding with other species, as this can dilute the color of the offspring. With proper care and breeding techniques, you can create a colony of cherry shrimp with unique and vibrant colors.

Tank Size and Water Parameters

Tank size and water parameters play a pivotal role in the proper maintenance and health of these freshwater crustaceans. For a breeding colony of red cherry shrimp, a 5-gallon tank is suitable, but larger tanks are recommended for larger populations or if other species are to be added. A larger tank allows for more stable water conditions and more space, which is particularly important when breeding. It also provides more area for plants, which are essential for the shrimp’s well-being.

Maintaining proper water parameters is crucial for the health of red cherry shrimp. Below is a table summarizing the ideal water conditions for red cherry shrimp, including temperature, pH, and water hardness. It’s important to regularly test the water using a reliable test kit to ensure that the conditions remain within the recommended range. In addition to water testing, tank decoration is also important. Plants provide hiding spaces for the shrimp and increase surface area in the tank, which benefits the shrimp’s diet. Also need help with shrimp tank filters? Check out our latest guide. A simple sponge filter is also recommended for mechanical and biological filtration.

ParameterIdeal Range
Temperature68°-80°F (20°-27°C)
GH4-8 dGH (66.7-133.4 ppm)
KH3-15 dKH (53.6-268.3 ppm)
Chlorine/Chloramines and Ammonia/Nitrite levels0 ppm

Overall, maintaining proper tank size and water parameters, as well as tank decoration and water testing, are critical components of red cherry shrimp care. Keep these factors in mind to ensure a healthy and thriving colony of red cherry shrimp in your aquarium.

Filtration and Plant Requirements

Red Cherry Shrimp - Filtration and Plant Requirements

To ensure the health and well-being of your freshwater crustaceans, it’s important to consider the filtration and plant requirements in your aquarium setup.

A simple sponge filter is a great option for mechanical and biological filtration, but if you’re looking for alternatives, hang-on-the-back or canister filters with large biomedia capacity can also work well. The key is to avoid strong water flow, which can stress out your shrimp.

In terms of plant requirements, low maintenance options like Anubias, Java fern, and Java moss are great for shrimp tanks. These plants increase the surface area in the tank, providing more space for biofilm growth, which is a natural food source for cherry shrimp. They also provide hiding places for shrimplets and add a natural aesthetic to your tank.

When selecting plants, be sure to avoid those with sharp edges or toxic properties, as they can harm your shrimp.

Feeding and Supplementation

Red Cherry Shrimp - Feeding and Supplementation

For fabulous feeding, sprinkle some shrimp supplements sparingly to sustain your small scavengers. Red cherry shrimp are primarily scavengers and algae eaters, so overfeeding can cause issues with water quality. It’s recommended to feed them small amounts once or twice a day, rather than a large amount once a day.

Commercially prepared foods, such as flakes, pellets, and granules, are suitable for cherry shrimp. However, it’s important to ensure that the food is specifically designed for shrimp and doesn’t contain copper, which is toxic to them.

In addition to commercial foods, blanched vegetables, such as spinach and zucchini, can also be fed to cherry shrimp. Supplement options include Dennerle Shrimp King products, which are specifically designed for shrimp and provide them with essential nutrients. However, supplements should be used sparingly as cherry shrimp prefer to graze on biofilm and algae.

It’s important to monitor the feeding frequency and adjust accordingly to maintain a healthy and clean environment for your cherry shrimp.

Tank Mates

If you’re looking to add some variety to your aquarium, consider introducing some compatible tank mates to your cherry shrimp. While cherry shrimp are peaceful and can be kept together in large groups, there are still some species that are not suitable to be kept with them. To ensure the safety and well-being of your cherry shrimp, it’s important to research compatibility options and alternative tank mates before adding any new fish to the tank.

To help you get started, here is a table outlining some compatible tank mates and species to avoid when keeping cherry shrimp. Keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list and that individual personalities and tank setups can vary, so always monitor the behavior of your tank mates and make adjustments as necessary. With the right tank mates and proper care, your cherry shrimp can thrive and add an extra pop of color and activity to your aquarium.

Compatible Tank MatesSpecies to Avoid
Small Tetras, Rasboras, and DaniosBettas
Otocinclus and Corydoras CatfishMedium to Large Fish
Nerite Snails and Mystery SnailsAggressive Fish
Amano ShrimpAssassin Snails
Endler’s Livebearers

Breeding and Reproduction

Breeding and reproducing cherry shrimp can be a rewarding experience, as you watch the shrimplets grow and thrive in your aquarium. To successfully breed cherry shrimp, you need to create a stable environment with good water quality and plenty of hiding places for the shrimplets. Adding live plants and moss to the aquarium can provide a safe space for the shrimplets to hide and grow.

Breeding techniques for cherry shrimp are relatively easy. Females will carry eggs in a saddle on their back while males fertilize them. Once the eggs hatch, the shrimplets will need to be fed similar foods to the adult shrimp.

Additionally, understanding shrimp genetics can help you breed for certain color morphs or traits. By selectively breeding the shrimp, you can create a colony of cherry shrimp with unique colors and patterns.

Sexing Cherry Shrimp

Red Cherry Shrimp - Sexing Cherry Shrimp

To easily differentiate between male and female cherry shrimp, simply look for the significantly larger and more colorful females in your colony. Here’s what to look for:

  • Females have a saddle-shaped underbelly where they carry their eggs.
  • Males have a narrower underbelly and a more streamlined body shape.
  • Females have a more rounded appearance and are generally larger than males.
  • Males have longer antennae than females.

Identifying the gender of your cherry shrimp is crucial if you plan on breeding them. There are various breeding methods you can use, but the first step is to ensure that you have both male and female shrimp in your colony. With these distinguishing features, you can easily identify the gender of your cherry shrimp and start breeding them successfully.

Lifespan and Growth

You may be interested in knowing that the lifespan of Neocaridina davidii, the species of shrimp commonly referred to as cherry shrimp, is typically between one and two years. The growth rate of cherry shrimp is relatively slow and they reach their maximum size of about 1.5 inches within six months to a year. Environmental factors such as water quality, temperature, and diet can affect their growth and lifespan.

To better understand the growth and lifespan of cherry shrimp, refer to the table below which outlines the optimal water parameters for their health and well-being. It’s important to note that these parameters can vary slightly depending on the specific needs of each individual shrimp and that regular water testing and maintenance is crucial for their longevity.

Water ParameterIdeal Range
Temperature68°-80°F (20°-27°C)
Ammonia/Nitrite0 ppm
Chlorine/Chloramine0 ppm
GH4-8 dGH (66.7-133.4 ppm)
KH3-15 dKH (53.6-268.3 ppm)

By maintaining stable water conditions and providing a balanced diet, you can help ensure that your cherry shrimp live a long and healthy life. However, it’s important to keep in mind that their lifespan is relatively short and that breeding new generations of shrimp can be a rewarding way to continue enjoying these fascinating creatures.

Juvenile Shrimp and Shrimplets

Now that you know how to set up a tank for red cherry shrimp and how to care for adult shrimp, it’s time to learn about caring for baby shrimp. Juvenile shrimp and shrimplets require special attention to ensure their survival. The small size and vulnerability of shrimplets make them easy targets for predators, so it’s crucial to take steps to protect them.

To care for baby shrimp, you need to provide them with the right conditions and food. Shrimplets require the same water parameters and food as adult shrimp, but in smaller amounts. To protect them from predators, you should provide dense plant cover, such as java moss or water wisteria, where they can hide and grow. It’s also important to avoid keeping them with small fish that may mistake them for food. In the table below, you can find some tips on how to care for baby shrimp and protect them from predators.

Tips for Caring for Baby ShrimpTips for Protecting Shrimplets from Predators
Provide dense plant coverAvoid keeping with small fish
Feed them smaller amounts of the same food as adult shrimpProvide hiding places, such as caves or crevices
Keep water parameters stableUse a sponge filter to prevent them from getting sucked in
Avoid using copper-based medicationSeparate pregnant females and newborn shrimplets from the rest of the colony
Keep them in a species-only tank or with compatible tank matesProvide plenty of hiding places in the tank
Watch for signs of stress or illnessKeep the tank clean and well-maintained

By following these tips, you can ensure the survival and growth of your baby shrimp. With proper care, your red cherry shrimp colony will thrive and provide endless enjoyment for you as an aquarist.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should water changes be done in a cherry shrimp tank?

In a cherry shrimp tank, water changes should be done weekly or biweekly, depending on the size of the tank and the number of shrimp. It’s important to maintain stable water parameters and avoid overfeeding to prevent harmful ammonia buildup.

Can cherry shrimp be kept with other types of freshwater shrimp?

Adding compatible freshwater shrimp to a cherry shrimp tank is possible, but it requires careful consideration. Amano shrimp and ghost shrimp are popular options, but breeding with other species is not recommended.

What is the ideal temperature range for cherry shrimp?

The ideal temperature range for cherry shrimp is between 68°F to 80°F. Tank size considerations should also be taken into account, as well as the feeding habits of cherry shrimp which mostly consist of biofilm and algae.

How long does it take for cherry shrimp eggs to hatch?

By coincidence, cherry shrimp eggs take around 2-3 weeks to hatch. Optimal egg incubation conditions include stable water parameters, a temperature range of 68°F to 78°F, and females fanning their eggs with their swimming legs.

Can cherry shrimp live in a brackish water environment?

Cherry shrimp breeding is best done in freshwater tanks with stable water conditions. They have low salinity tolerance and cannot survive in brackish water environments.

Dive In and Experience the Joy of Keeping Red Cherry Shrimp!

Congratulations! You now have all the knowledge you need to care for your red cherry shrimp. You can also check out our Blue Velvet Shrimp care guide. Remember to keep their tank clean and well-maintained, with the right water parameters and filtration. Feed them a balanced diet of high-quality pellets and supplements, and watch them thrive. With proper care, your shrimp can live up to two years and even produce offspring. As you watch your shrimp scuttle around their tank, think of them as the jewels of your aquarium.

These little creatures are not only beautiful to look at but also fascinating to observe. With their vibrant colors and playful personalities, they’re sure to bring joy and life to your aquatic world.

So dive in and enjoy the rewarding experience of keeping red cherry shrimp!

About the author

Fantastic Fish Tanks is your home for all things home aquarium relate. Our dedicated team of aquarists, biologists, and writers share a common passion for fishkeeping. We provide expert advice, product reviews, and DIY guides to make fishkeeping accessible for everyone. We're here to support you in your fish keeping journey!

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