Crystal Red Shrimp
(Caridina cf. cantonensis)
Quick Care Facts
• Care Level: Moderate • Temperament: Peaceful • Maximum Size: 2"
• Minimum Tank Size: 10 gallons • Water Conditions: 62-74° F, KH 1-5, pH 5.8-6.8
• Color Forms: Red, White • Diet: Omnivore • Origin: Southeast Asia
• Family: Atyidae • Species: Shrimp • Aquarium Type: Shrimp
Crystal Red Shrimp native habitat, distribution, behavior & aquarium compatibility.
Crystal Red Shrimp are widely considered to be the most popular of the tropical dwarf shrimp species found within the aquarium hobby. Their brilliant coloration and pattern, along with their peaceful docile demeanor have made them a worldwide favorite with hobbyists. Crystal Red Shrimp are a selectively bred species of Bee Shrimp, that have been bred for their red color variant. Originally developed in Japan, the Crystal Red Shrimp are now selectively bred around the world by a variety of commercial institutions and hobbyists alike.
In addition to their striking coloration, Crystal Red Shrimp are also prized for their peaceful nature and interactive colonies that can be a true joy to watch. When kept in proper water conditions, this species can live close to 2 years and will happily co-exist with other Crystal Red Shrimp or other peaceful invertebrate or fish species.
How to successfully keep Crystal Red Shrimp in the home aquarium.
Crystal Red Shrimp require an established aquarium with stable water parameters and a high level of water quality. Selective breeding has made this species less tolerant of poor water conditions than wild species of dwarf shrimp. They require an established aquarium that has very low nitrates and soft slightly acidic water that ranges from the mid 60's to low 70's in temperature. The aquarium should contain a sand or fine gravel substrate along with a good amount of plants, rocks and driftwood in order to provide a proper habitat.
Crystal Red Shrimp will appreciate having caves and crevices to retreat to when they feel threatened of to retreat from the often bright aquarium lights. Tank mates should include other peaceful varieties of freshwater invertebrates and smaller peaceful tropical community fish species. Hobbyists who intend to breed the Crystal Red Shrimp, should keep a small colony of them in a species only aquarium that maintains stable water conditions with no potential fish or invertebrate predators.
Lastly, Crystal Red Shrimp, like all dwarf freshwater shrimp species and most invertebrates, should not be exposed to copper or copper based medicines as copper is toxic to them and any elevated levels of copper within the aquarium can kill them.
Feeding & Nutrition
How to properly feed Crystal Red Shrimp and provide a healthy diet.
As with most all freshwater shrimp species, the Crystal Red Shrimp is an omnivore that will readily scavenge the aquarium for a wide variety of food items including both plant and animal based. The bulk of their diet in nature is made up of algae consumption and thus they should be provided plenty of algae or plant based materials within the aquarium as well.
They will also readily consume commercial foods designed for bottom feeding fish and invert species along with a wide variety of flaked or pellet commercial foods. The Crystal Red Shrimp will also readily accept blanched vegetables such as spinach or similar greens.
How to successfully breed Crystal Red Shrimp in the aquarium environment.
The key to breeding Crystal Red Shrimp is to maintain water parameters that are as close to possible to ideal conditions for the species. Ideal water conditions for breeding Crystal Red Shrimp are a temperature of 68°, Ph of 6.2 and a water hardness dkh of 3. The aquarium should also contain some rocks, plants or driftwood in order to provide the shrimp with a sense of security and to simulate natural conditions.
Once the breeding aquarium meets the necessary water parameters a group of male and female shrimp will typically have no problems successfully breeding. It can be slightly difficult to determine the sex of the Crystal Red Shrimp; however, the males are generally smaller in size and have tail sections that are shorter and thinner than the females of the species.
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