Red Cherry Shrimp Mega Guide

Aquarium Lighting

All living things need energy from the sun to create a food source so unless you live near a thermal vent 4 miles down in the depths of the ocean you are going to have to provide your shrimp with some type of aquarium light .

I recommend anything from 8-10 hours a day. The light needs to be in the 6000k daylight range for two reasons, you can use a lower 4000k light but this will make the tank and the shrimp look orange, lights like this will often be marked as warm so you want to avoid these ..

..on the opposite end of the spectrum you could also use 10,000k lights but in a freshwater setting they don’t look natural, people think of the sea as being blue so this is where marine tanks look great under a higher kelvin of light.

The other reason is I think most plants do well in the 6000k range, it also looks natural.

A Male Cherry Shrimp

Male Cherry Shrimp

Male Cherry Shrimp

Cherry Shrimp Water Preparation

This will be the single most important thing in deciding whether or not you will be successful at keeping Shrimp.

Water Is the giver of all life and it is important that you understand that what is safe for you might not necessarily be safe for Shrimp.

Typically our drinking water can contain elements such as chlorine and fluoride which are deadly to Shrimp so we have to remove them. By far the easiest way to do this is to use a water conditioner like Seachem Prime 

It is also very important that you age the water you are going to use for at least 24hrs, this is to let the water heat up and also allow the pH to stabilize. Tap water under pressure in your pipes contain millions of tiny air bubbles this increases the Ph of the water. As an example, the pH of the water straight from my tap is 8 if I leave it to age and degas it drops down to 6.5 after 24hrs.

Aquarium Cycling

Add the substrate of your choice and add your filter I recommend a small sponge filter with a small powerhead for small tanks but you can also use other filtration methods like hang on back filter and canister filter  

In an ideal world, I would use 2-3 canister filters in a chain with a  double sponge filter on the intakes of all my tanks.When your tank is ready start to fill it with water and prepare it like I showed you in the first section of this guide.

Add a pinch of bacterial powder if you have it, I like to use Borneo wild enlive and BacterAE Next, sit on your hand for a week and then do a 25% water change again remember to age that water.Repeat these steps for two months.

After 2 months your tank should be cycled.

Now is a good time for you to break out ammonia test kit   and see what you have, I personally don’t do this anymore because the tanks are always ready but it is good practice for you to see it for yourself.

Let me touch briefly on why the cycle process is important.

A shrimp tank needs a stable nitrogen cycle to function properly and in the early stages, it is anything but stable…

…bacterial colony’s will thrive and die off as they compete with each other for the resources your tanks hold, this is why I recommend starting with a bacterial powder so that you choose the type of bacteria.

Bacterial colonies can also take a little while to get going and some anaerobic bacteria can take a longer time than normal.

Cherry Shrimp Temperature?

The best temperature for Cherry Shrimp IMO is 22-24c, they can live in higher temperatures but you will see a higher mortality rate and shorter life span, breeding shrimp can be a balancing act of what is best for the shrimp and how to get the optimal growth breeding rates without it having detrimental effects.

A great example of this is egg hatching, the warmer the water is the faster the eggs grow but the percentage of surviving young shrimplets will be less, you also have to remember things like oxygen levels decrease as water gets hotter and also bacteria counts get higher which also effects mortality rates.

Does temperature affect the sex of the shrimp?

I have no concrete evidence on this either way just my observations but I do know that this is true in crayfish so here are my thoughts on this matter.

In nature during a wet season the fresh water will flow into the waterways lowering the water temperature, this effect signals the optimum conditions for all creatures living in the water to reproduce and breed.

If there is lots of food and an influx of freshwater the population will grow faster, hence why the female shrimp are favored on the lower side of the optimal scale, think of it this way lots of females produce lots of baby shrimp and conditions like oxygen demands will be more suitable for young animals.

When the water is warmer the shrimp will still need to breed but they have to do so at an equal ratio probably a 1-1 this ensure both sexes will always be available to mate.

Another interesting concept would be do temperature changes during egg gestation affect the shrimp in any way? Can it change color like it does in many reptiles like Python’s and Alligators as an example?

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