Breeding freshwater cherry shrimps

adult female red cherry shrimp

Breeding cherry shrimp

adult female red cherry shrimp
adult female cherry shrimp showing her dark red colouration

Shrimp are usually bought as a scavenger that is supposed to eat uneaten leftover food. This can lead to incorrect care and failure of your shrimp to thrive and breed. Instead, if the shrimp were treated with the same care you give to fish then they will amply pay you back in terms of entertainment and beauty. They are active and interesting in their own right with some of the nicest colours too. So don’t treat them like second class citizens in the aquarium.

Sexing cherry shrimps

Males and females can be told apart by looking at the colour the female being a solid red while the male will have a more faded colour. The female has a yellow “saddle” on her back which is a bunch of unfertilised eggs. The female is also larger than the male. A fully grown adult female will be 1.5 inches long.

Cherry shrimp breeding aquarium set up

A shrimp aquarium will ideally have a sponge filter or two. The shrimp will actually feed off the bacteria on the filter. Keep the temperature at 75F. Have some clumps of java moss. The shrimp absolutely love this and feed off organisms that grow on the moss. Some floating plants too is great for them. Provide dark gravel to ensure the best colour of your cherry shrimps. Feed tiny amounts of fish food and vegetables every few days. Remove any waste and that’s it. They are much easier to maintain than fish. However, remove any dead shrimp immediately.

Cherry Shrimp Breeding preparation

Try an 18 inch tank mature aquarium containing a sponge filter. Set the temperature at 80F. Just like fish ammonia, chlorine and nitrites will kill shrimp so a cycled tank is best. Ph is not important. Anything between 6ph-8ph is okay.

Breeding Cherry Shrimp

pregnant cherry shrimp
pregnant female cherry shrimp with yellow eggs

Put the shrimps into the aquarium. Make sure you have males and females. A few of each is good. Feed the shrimp fish food. Feed very small amounts. They are not big eaters. Also feed lettuce, cucumber and carrot. Place in the aquarium in the morning and remove any uneaten pieces at night.
The shrimp will mate if all is well. The female will lay the eggs and hold them underneath her tail. The eggs will be held there for 3 weeks or more. When the eggs hatch the baby shrimp are flicked away by the mother. They are born as exact miniatures of the parents. however, they are almost transparent. Now you are well on your way to having your own breeding colony of cherry shrimps.

Making money from breeding cherry shrimp

At the moment, few people are breeding and selling them. There is a potential to make money from them. In that case consider also, the other coloured cherry shrimps such as the blue and yellow varieties. With these being the same species, care and breeding is exactly the same. However, don’t put the different colours in the same aquarium because when they interbreed they will revert back to their native greeny brown colouration.

Enjoying cherry shrimps in the home aquarium

To enjoy them fully it is best to have a breeding colony and every so often put a young adult female shrimp in your living room aquarium to enjoy them. But it is best to keep them with peaceful species such as small tetras.