What Do Your Planted Tank Shrimp Love to Eat?

Shrimp Tank questions that need answering are, “What do shrimp eat? How often should you feed them?”

What Do Your Planted Tank Shrimp Love to Eat?

When you are about to start shrimp breeding, you ask a lot of questions about how to set up the tank perfectly and what precautions you should take before starting the breeding process regarding the environment and the shape of the tank. When you put shrimp in your planted tank, you should already realize that it is a living creature and needs food to survive. The questions that need answering are, “What do shrimp eat? How often should you feed them?” Well, this guide will tell you what you need to know about food shrimp love to eat and many other facts. We will discuss the feeding habits and the requirements of different aquarium shrimp as well.


What do most shrimp love?
If you are interested in biology or have at least paid a little attention during high school biology class, then you will know what biofilms are. Biofilms are thin, slimy films of bacteria that adhere to surfaces. Shrimp love biofilms and love to eat them but biofilms are not enough to feed your shrimp constantly. Biofilm may be suitable for baby shrimp, but of course, adult shrimp need actual food.

You can feed your shrimp variety of foods that can be purchased at most LFS. Here is a list of branded foods that shrimp love to eat:

Shirakura shrimp food. It is designed for shrimp.

Shirakura shrimp food.jpg

BorneoWild shrimp food. It is also designed for shrimp.

Borneo Wild shrimp food.jpg

Mosura shrimp food. It is also designed for shrimp.

Mosura shrimp food.jpg

Glass Garten. It is a German premium line also designed for shrimp and one of our favorites. We especially like the Bacter AE product they make.

Glass Garten Bacter AE.jpg

What we mean when we say “designed for shrimp” is that they do not immediately break down when you put them in your planted tank, and shrimp love really enjoy these foods as they have been formulated to be seen as appetizing for most shrimp, enticing them to eat the food.


What Else Do Shrimp Eat?

Shrimp also like foods that may seem a little odd, but they have been known to get down and hungry on the following foods:

• Pears. Cut them into small pieces before putting them into the tank.
• Cucumbers. Shrimp eat them immediately, and they stay in their form until they are eaten completely.
• Spinach. Shrimp love it and it an excellent way to make them colorful
• Hikari crab and Lobster Bites.
• Ken’s premium sinking sticks.

Make sure that if you add things like mushrooms, spinach, kale, flower blossoms etc that you blanch them first so they are soft. Shrimp won't be able to consume raw ingredients as easily.

Adding Almond leaves to the tank is an excellent way to soften water and provide for constant shrimp grazing as they can be left in until consumed.


There are two problems with Hikari crab, lobster bites and Ken’s premium sinking sticks:

1. The first problem is that they dissolve after a short time when you put them in the tank and can make cleaning the tank an impossible mission so using a gravel vacuum is recommended if this food is used on a regular basis.
2. The second problem is that small particles of these hide into the moss and other areas when they begin to break down like around the plants or at the bottom of the tank, which will lead to the formation of flatworms and other harmful creatures.

Now let’s explore the world of different kinds of shrimp and what the feeding habits of each type are. A general rule of thumb is to add a pea-sized amount of food per 20 shrimp. The food should be consumed within two hours. If it is not, remove it.

1. Red Cherry Shrimp (Neocaridina davidi var. red):
Red cherry shrimp need food constantly. They are omnivorous creatures that need you to take special care of when selecting their diet and their supplements. Food is not only essential for their growth but also one of the most important factors regarding the whole breeding and reproduction processes. The proper diet will prevent problems like sterile birth and maintain the health of baby shrimp.

The proper diet of red cherry shrimp consists of vegetables, better if they are fresh. Neocaridina shrimp enjoy vegetables such as spinach and zucchini. Boil the vegetables before putting it into the tank. These vegetables will keep your shrimp healthy. You can buy processed foods from most LFS and pet stores. Processed food is what will keep the red color of the shrimp bright so make sure they are fed well. Spinach and other leafy greens also promote color.

Don’t add new food until shrimp consume all the food in the tank or remove what is left, then add new food. This way you will keep the tank clean without any changes in the PH of the water.

Here you can see the true beauty of red cherry shrimp:[​IMG]

Looking to Breed? Watch this ultimate guide for red cherry shrimp breeding:

2. Crystal Red Shrimp (Caridina Cantonensis):
Crystal red is a different kind of shrimp, but it is still shrimp, so the pieces of advice that you will follow with red cherry shrimp are the same, but there are some differences as they are more sensitive.

• Proper diet is needed to maintain the beauty of the crystal red shrimp. The solid red and white markings are maintained by the proper diet.
• Crystal red shrimp is a species of shrimp that molt. They will leave their old shells in the tank and develop new ones. The proper diet will help them develop new healthy shells. Don’t remove the old shells from the tank for a while. They are rich in calcium and are utilized by the Caridina red shrimp.

They are so beautiful; look at how thick the white coloring is. This particular color indicator lets you know the class of bred Caridina it is as SSS will have red tops and completely white bodies and tails. It is how you know these are high-level CRS: [​IMG]

Need to know more about Crystal Red Shrimp? Take a second to watch this full-length video and gain some knowledge on setting up your Crystal Red Shrimp tank:

Do you breed Caridina Cantonensis? If so, where do your CRS fall:
3. Amano Shrimp:
Amano shrimp are the kind of shrimp that eat nearly anything. They eat algae, waste food, decaying plants and of course processed food. They will not leave any waste food in the tank. Because it needs a large amount of food, you will need to monitor the food in the tank constantly. You do not have to worry about the waste food that may produce ammonia or nitrate that put the shrimp in danger. They will not leave any waste to be turned into harmful products.

4. Ghost Shrimp:
Naturally, they eat brush algae and fallen food but they actually they can eat anything. They are clear creatures that you can see through them so you will see the food in their digestive systems.

5. Baby Shrimp:
There are three points that you need to take care of with baby shrimp.
• They eat biofilms and wastes of the food; don’t remove them from the tank.
• They are highly sensitive to any changes in the water. Wastes are good when they are fresh, but once waste starts to produce ammonia, nitrate, and nitrites, your baby shrimp are in extreme danger.
• As they grow, baby shrimp will need more food. You will start your tank with about 10 shrimp that eat almost nothing, and after about three months, you will need large amounts of food. Don’t leave the shrimp until they are starving; adults will eat the babies if they are starving. An easy way to keep baby shrimp fed is to add beta glucans and Bacter AE to the water column to provide a food source. Sponge filters are also a must to increase baby survival rates as the babies can eat the mulm on the sponge easily. You'll notice that baby shrimp tend to stay in the same spot for the first couple weeks. This means they may not get access to food you put into the tank. By adding beta glucans and Bacter AE it will help get the particles to the shrimplets.

How many times should you feed your shrimp?
It depends on if there is food or waste in the tank or not. It is better not to overfeed your shrimp because of the high risks of detritus buildup and disease.
The number of times that you will feed your shrimp and the amount of food is determined according to the following factors:
1.The number of shrimp in the tank.
2. The size and type of shrimp you are breeding.
3. The type of food you are providing to the shrimp.

It is suggested to start feeding your shrimp low amounts and increase over time to avoid the bad effects. Remember a good rule of thumb is pea-sized amount of food per 20 shrimp. Remove what they don't eat within 2 hrs. It will take a while until you feed them perfectly so be patient and don’t just throw food in the tank.


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