HOW TO BREED CHERRY SHRIMPS
Cherry shrimps have always been our go-to species of shrimps at the Beginning stage of ‘Shrimp keeping’. These guys are super easy to keep and cheaper compared to other species of shrimps.
Cherry shrimp are ‘hardy’ meaning they can live in several different water conditions. But in order to actively breed them, certain conditions need to be met.
Having these shrimps in your aquarium simply enhances the beauty of your Aquarium and benefits in maintaining your tank’s water cycle.
Since it is easy to keep these shrimps, we could also manage to multiply them faster and make a profit by selling them. So here are some ways we can multiply these shrimps at a faster rate, to create a colony of cherry red shrimps in your tank.
You will need basic supplies like adult Cherry shrimp, an aquarium or fish tank, moss and/or aquarium plants, Indian Almond leaves, hiding spaces, coral stone, sponge filters, water for the aquarium and a simple pH scale.
1. MINIMUM WATER CHANGE
These little guys love having stable water and doing minimal water change is the best way to maintain it. Just perform 1 or 2 water changes in a month and make sure that you just do 10% of the water change in your tank. Avoid water changes on a weekly basis; this would just alter the entire stability of the water.
Whenever I did a weekly water change, I found at least 2 to 3 shrimps dying. But the death rate was significantly reduced when I reduced the water change to once a month.
2. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE BOTH SEXES
Avoid buying only female or only male shrimps. This will not help in any breeding. Most of the aquarium stores sell a single gender as they do not want us to breed them and so once they die, we would have to go back and buy from them.
So make sure you get both the ‘Sexes’ of the shrimps from the pet store.
Since it is not easy to determine the gender of the shrimp unless it is time for it to reproduce, I advise you to buy several pairs of shrimp to increase your chances of having both sexes. In general, females tend to be much bigger than males.
3. PLENTY OF HIDING SPACE
Make sure that you have a lot of hiding spaces available for your shrimps so they can rest when they have eggs and also create a space for mating. Cherry shrimps love hiding spaces.
You can simply add ‘Java Moss’ to your aquarium to create a hideout for your shrimps. This moss grows wild and helps in creating a suitable ‘ecosystem’ for your shrimps. The shrimp fry can hide in them from bigger fish or the other adult shrimps.
Coconut shells, clay hideouts, and driftwood caves help in creating a perfect hiding space for cherry shrimps.
4. pH SCALE
Maintain a pH scale within 6-7, as the shrimps are most sustainable under this pH scale. They are likely to survive longer and breed more due to the suitable ambiance. This pH value increases the ‘Survival Rate of the Shrimp Fry’.
5. ADD INDIAN ALMOND LEAVES
Almond leaves tend to have a lot of protein and nutrients that the shrimps need in order to stay healthy. Cherry Shrimps ‘Love eating’ these leaves and the tanning caused by the leaves also acts as a natural medicine to the tank and enhances the beauty of your Aquarium.
It also acts as a food source for the shrimps in case you are going out on a holiday or vacation and there is no one feeding the shrimps. These leaves play an ‘Essential Role during the breeding time’.
6. ADDING CORAL
Try purchasing some heaps of coral from your nearby pet store as it ‘Adds Calcium’ to the water over time and provides ‘Necessary Nutrients during molting’.
Adding crushed coral simply gives away more Calcium to your shrimps.
Note: Adding Coral stone to the aquarium can make the water very hard (high calcium content). So if you have any other fish in the aquarium, make sure they are compatible with this kind of water.
Hack: If you are unable to get your hands on any coral stone (As having any form of coral in my country India is banned) you could use egg shells. Make sure to clean the egg shells and boil them in water for a couple of minutes to kill any parasites. Also, crush the shells well before adding them to your tank.
7. PROPER WATER ACCLIMATION
You might add a few pairs of cherry shrimps into your tanks every now and then. Make sure you are water acclimating them properly for a few hours to avoid any kind of changes in the water temperature and instability of the PH scale since the shrimps are very ‘Sensitive’.
8. SPONGE FILTERS
I always suggest to using Sponge Filter instead of any other type of filter in your aquarium. This just simply enhances the efficiency of filtration in your tank and it prevents the ‘Shrimp Fry from getting stuck sucked into it.
However, hang-on-the-back filters could also be useful when you are able to ‘Block or Cover’ extra gaps in the suction pump.
9. KEEP CHECKING FOR PLANARIA
Plaria is a small parasite that infects shrimps, killing them, and simply making your entire aquarium look ugly. Check for these guys when you buy a new shrimp or set up a new shrimp tank and add the proper medication that is needed to avoid the growth of these parasites in your shrimp and tank.
For a more general overview of the other requirements of shrimps, I suggest you read my article on A Simple Guide To Cherry Shrimp Care and 7 TIPS FOR KEEPING SHRIMPS. Both these articles will give you a broader picture of the needs of your shrimp.
Can you breed shrimp with fish?
You definitely can, but it’s not ideal and not with all kinds of fish. You will have to keep more passive and non-aggressive fish. Also, fish that swim at the top or middle of the aquarium would be ideal.
If you’ve followed the above guide, then adding fish won’t stop your shrimp from breeding.
I explain in my article Top 11 Tank Mates for Shrimps, the ideal tank mates you could keep with your shrimp and not worry about their safety.
How many fry (babies) do Cherry Shrimp Produce?
A female Cherry Shrimp can produce around 20 to 40 shrimp eggs at a time. This does not mean all the eggs would hatch, but most of the time they do. they might not hatch if the egg did not get properly fertilized or if it got infected.
How often do Cherry Shrimp reproduce?
After fertilization (mating) the Cherry Shrimp will be pregnant for 3 to 4 weeks (21 to 30 days). After which the female gives birth to live shrimplets. They will be easily visible in 2 to 3 weeks.
What is the survival rate of Cherry Shrimp Babies?
The survival rate of cherry shrimplets is an average of 1 in 10 to 1 in 5, i.e. 10% to 20%
How can you increase the survival rate of Cherry Shrimp Babes?
Make sure the water parameters remain consistent, so try to avoid water change as much as possible. Add a lot of hiding spots (like coconut shells, clay hideouts, etc.). Ass a lot of moss and plants in the aquarium. And if possible, move this fish to another aquarium.
Do fish eat Cherry shrimp babies?
Yes, they will definitely eat a few shrimp fry, But if you have done your bit, and provided enough hiding space along with moss (like java moss, pelia moss, etc.) Then a good majority can survive. You can still expect a population explosion even if you keep them with fish.
How long do Cherry Shrimp take to Mature?
The average duration to reach sexual maturity for cherry shrimps is 4 to 5 months (120 to 150 days). Although some shrimp can mature faster and some later than others.
What should I feed my Baby Cherry Shrimp?
In an ideal situation, you do not have to feed your baby cherry shrimp. If they are born in a well-cycled tank, which already has algae and bio-film, they will eat that. As in their natural habitat in the wild, that’s what their diet mainly consists of.
If you do want to feed them, you can mix a little boiled egg yoke in some water or even liquid fish food. But I suggest against this as this could easily change the water parameters quickly if the food is not eaten and starts to decay. And changing water parameters can kill the cherry shrimp.
I wrote this article using what I have learned from my own experience but also referenced other articles to be more accurate and help you understand better. The links below are the references I’ve used to write this article –
- Journal of Aquatic Biology & Fisheries
- Breeding and life cycle of the ornamental freshwater shrimp Neocaridina Davidi in a biofilm-based culture system
- Post-hatching development of the ornamental ‘Red Cherry Shrimp’ Neocaridina davidi (Bouvier, 1904) (Crustacea, Caridea, Atyidae) under laboratorial conditions
- Female Growth and Offspring Quality over Successive Spawnings in a Caridean Shrimp Neocaridina davidi (Decapoda, Atyidae) with Direct Development
- The Shrimp Farm
- Aquarium Info
- Fish Keeping Advice