The Ghost Shrimp is a cool little freshwater shrimp that you may be interested in keeping if you have the right tank setup. Ghost Shrimp are sometimes called the Glass Shrimp because they have a semi-translucent body. This is a very inexpensive shrimp to purchase and should live for a year or two and sometimes even longer.
They are frequently used by fishermen as fish bait and they are considered pests by clam farmers who spend lots of money trying to eradicate them from their clam farms. For hobbyists, they can provide an interesting addition to a tank stocked with smaller, less aggressive fish species. Larger fish may find them irresistible and will just love eating them.
Ghost Shrimp need to build a borrow to feel secure so you will need to provide a sand or very small sized gravel substrate that will allow them to create a shelter for themselves. You may be able to keep multiples provided that you have a tank large enough to support multiples. You may see some aggressive behavior amongst them around breeding time.
The Ghost Shrimp is a somewhat decent scavenger and will go after all fish foods placed into the tank. Make sure they are getting enough to eat by dropping in a sinking shrimp pellet or algae wafer every once in a while.
If you have your ghosties in a tank with fishes that need treatment for diseases you will need to remove the shrimps to a separate tank while medicating. Beware especially of any medications containing copper. Run activated carbon through the aquarium filter and make sure you remove all of the medications before introducing them back into the tank.
Ghost Shrimp Profile Facts and Care Information
Scientific Name : Palaemonetes sp.
Common Names : Glass Shrimp, Grass Shrimp
Care Level : Easy
Size : 1 - 2 inches (3 - 5 cm)
Life span : 1 - 2 years, sometimes longer
pH : 6.5 - 8
Temperature : 65°F - 80°F (18°C - 27°C)
Origin / Habitat : Found in multiple places throughout North America, mostly farm raised for the pet fish trade
Ghost Shrimp Temperament / Behavior : Sometimes will eat baby fish, they are usually food for other fish, sometimes will fight among themselves if the tank is too small and there are too many of them.
Breeding / Mating / Reproduction : If you put several Ghost Shrimp in your tank then they will mate and the female will carry small eggs in her belly which you can see. Happens without you doing anything. If you want to raise the young then you need to move the female to a separate tank before she has her babies and add the appropriate amount of aquarium salt.
Tank Size : 5 gallons (19 liters)
Compatible Tank Mates : Use caution when selecting tank mates for your Ghost Shrimp if you want to keep them. Larger fish may find them irresistible and eat them. Smaller, peaceful fish species may be able to co-exist with them.
Fish Disease : They are not very susceptible to disease but are susceptible to chemicals that treat fish diseases. Look for warnings stating "not good for invertebrates on the bottle". Stay away from using any copper based medications in a tank with ghost shrimps.
Diet / Fish Food : Omnivorous - will eat almost anything you feed it and also a good bottom feeder. This is not an effective algae eater.
Tank Region : Usually stays close to its burrow in the sand or gravel.
Gender : Hard to determine, no noticeable external differences between males and females. Females will carry the eggs.