Ghost Shrimp is a very popular aquarium shrimp. This article about all of them. I will hope this article may have help with your setting up of Ghost shrimp tank. If you’re a beginner or you wish to have some ghost shrimp tank, this article may give you some help and knowledge about that.

Who is this ghost shrimp?

Ghost Shrimp, also known as Glass Shrimp or Grass Shrimp, is a relatively easy freshwater aquarium shrimp to keep.

These species are initially from North America and have been popular in home aquariums since being first described in 1850.

“Ghost shrimp” is the common name used for a few different varieties of shrimp, the most famous of which is the Ghost Shrimp freshwater genus belonging to the family of Palaemonids. However, most fish aquarium owners use the common name ‘Ghost Shrimp.’

You may wonder why they call them ghost. Like the name, they are ghosts. Because their bodies are transparent, because of this, you can’t find Ghost Shrimp unless you look carefully. This type of body helps much to escape from predator fish.

One of the saddest stories about them is that they used as feeder fish for large predator fish.

Body nature

These species are primarily translucent, small, and highly active.

They have two pairs of antennas, one long and the other one is short. Those are useful for finding foods in water and for sensing.

These shrimps may have different colored dots on their backs(the color may change one to another one).

In the case of body type, their body can be divided into two main parts: the cephalothorax and the abdomen.

. Ghost shrimp can move the eyestalks around so they can see their surroundings without moving their bodies. With this ability, they can keep an eye on predators looking around without moving. So they don’t need to move to see their enemies. It keeps them much safer without giving their position.

How big do you think they are?

They are not a type of shrimp, that shows such high growth. Ghost shrimps grow to roughly 1.5 inches. Females will become more significant than males. The absolute biggest one is 2 inches long.

Do you know how long they Live?

These little ones do not have a long-living period. They are only live up to one year or less than one year.

Things you must know before you chose Ghost shrimp as a pet

When you are going to buying this species, you may have to consider a few things.

Ghost shrimps are very inexpensive and easy to keep shellfish.

Most buyers kept as a feeder for more extensive and more aggressive fish, such as Oscar Fish, Jack Dempsey Fish, for example, which would hunt shrimp all day long. So the fact is if you have fishes like cichlid you can’t be able to put them together in one tank.

These shrimps can often be purchased en mass for as little as 20-50 cents each.

As a Scavenger Fish

They are scavengers and do an excellent job of cleaning the aquarium of rotting debris and algae. They are effective at actively decrease nitrates within the tank and having a shallow biomass footprint. So these species are excellent cleaners.

Tank requirements for Ghost Shrimp

Ghost Shrimp In The Bottom Layer Of Tank

A Ghost shrimp-like this little one would typically live in rivers or lakes where there is flowing water, fine sediment, and crevices to hide. It is essential to consider this when designing your aquarium. Keeping a shrimp aquarium can be fun, but if you want to keep your little crustaceans healthy, specific parameters need to be met.

Tank size

Shrimps do not require a large tank to live. It s enough to have 5 gallons or 10-gallon tank. But the most common one is a 10-gallon tank.

Preparation of your tank

Many shrimp tanks can seem quite empty when you look at a shrimp tank setup.

It s important to place some plants in your tub because these little creatures like to scurry and hide among the plants, which is especially apparent during molting.

Except for providing a hiding place for your shrimp, these aquarium plants also help stabilize water quality, which could be very useful for novice breeders.

Extra Tip – I will have some suggestion plants for you. Some of them are JAVA MOSS, JAVA FERN, CHOLLA WOOD.

Important Tip – One of the essential things in a tank for these shrimps is an aquarium cover, as they try to escape their sometimes.

Things to consider for choosing a substrate

These creatures like to dig the substrate and bury themselves and scavenge for their foods.

Famous Tip – When choosing a substrate, which can be found in any fish store, choose the one with nonchemicals as shrimp are known to be highly sensitive to chemicals. It is also recommended to rinse and wash the substrate before adding it to the tank.

Water Parameters

We can’t live at a high temperature, and also we cant live in too much cold. Like humans, these little guys have some parameters for their living cycle.

Their pH can be variable from 6.5 – 8.0. A neutral range will increase health, color, and hatching rates of Ghost Shrimp eggs.

These shrimps are highly sensitive to nitrite. So it must be important before adding any Ghost Shrimp to the aquarium to ensure nitrite is 0. You can check the levels with a test kit.

The nitrate should be less than 20 ppm. And also, the ammonia level should always be 0.


The typical aquarium temperature for Ghost Shrimp is around 65-85°F (18-29°C).

Ghost shrimp can endure temperatures as low as 65°F. These species are best kept around 75°F in a tropical aquarium.

In higher temperatures, their growth rate and reproduction rate will become faster than usual. However, higher temperatures reduce dissolved oxygen, and stocking will need to be lowered.

85°F (30°C) is the upper limit tolerated by Ghost Shrimp. At low temperatures, Ghost Shrimp are more capable of having the disease.


Just like we need oxygen, these shrimps tank need needs a filter.

Having a better filtration system in the tank is vital for shrimp. It not only cleans and purifies the water but also creates an atmosphere of their natural habitat by providing water flow.

Having a good filter in your tank will provide both biological and chemical filtration.

Extra Tip – I prefer to use a Sponge filter with an air pump.
The gravel filter is also suitable for a Ghost Shrimp tank.


Of course, Ghost Shrimp doesn’t need lights for their house. If you want to give light for your tank use, some dim light is the best way.

Ghost Shrimp molting Process

Ghost Shrimp shows rapid growth due to the short life span.

The special feature here is that although they grow, their shell does not grow. For this reason, they often switch the outer shell several times during their lives.

It’s like removing clothes we can’t wear. Each time they are molting new shells coming for the old one. During this time, we can’t see a  color change in their body.

What are the problems you face during the molting process

If you are an amateur, you can get very confused during molting. You could be fooled into their abandoned shell as dead ghost shrimp.

Now I’m telling you the easiest way to find dead Ghost Shrimp. They look quite colorful when they’s slight same color as when you cook a shrimp.

Very Important – Ghost Shrimp need more protection after removing their shell, so having a hiding place and plants in the tank is a must.

Essential facts about the molting process

  • There is no definite time limit for molting.
  • Usually, a young Ghost Shrimp remove the shell every eight days, and an adult Ghost shrimp remove it nearly every 35 days.
  • This process depends on how fast they grow.
  • Frequently molting means your Ghost Shrimps are growing well.
  • No need to remove the empty shell from the tank you can see other shrimp eating it in a few days.

Best tank mates for Ghost Shrimp

Ghost Shrimp tank mates must be small non-aggressive community tank fish that are not big enough to eat them.

They no longer live with goldfish, Oscars, and other cichlids, Frogs, Turtles, crayfish, or other aggressive roughens. It’s good to have their kind in their tanks.


  • Red Cherry Shrimp
  • Nerite Snails
  • Mystery Snails
  • Malaysian Trumpet Snails
  • Gold Inca Snails
  • Ivory Snails
  • Ramshorn Snails

Feeding your Ghost Shrimp

Don’t be afraid. These Little ones are very easy to feed. They can eat whatever is edible in the tank.

Since most of the bottom of the tank is occupied, it is advisable to provide food that is submerged. Sometimes Ghost Shrimp come to the surface of the water, pick up food floating in the water and go down. This is an exciting thing to watch.

The best commercial foods

  • Flakes
  • Pellets
  • Algae Wafers

You can put a small dish inside the tank and put food on it.

They usually eat algae, plant detritus, and any food leftover from a fish’s meal. So you don’t need to worry about their feeding cycle.

How often should you feed ?

If you have a Ghost Shrimp-only tank, feeding once a day is sufficient.

If you have more fish with Ghost Shrimp, feeding once in two days is enough because they can eat leftovers from other fish

Important Tip – You can use Ghost Shrimp as a scavenger fish.

How To Breed?

Ghost shrimp breeding is some kind of challenge that owners are suffering. But Setting suitable tank setup With required parameters this breeding process is not too hard.

The tank must contain both male and female ghost shrimps. As I mentioned above, females are much larger than males. So you can easily separate females from males.

Increase the temperature in the aquarium to around 80°F. Raising the heat can help simulate warmer months (and therefore wetter months) of the year.

Water changes can also help to encourage breeding behavior.

Higher temperatures increase metabolism, and it will help breeding activity in the shrimp.

And the other fact is filled your tank with patches of thick plant cover. This may cause Ghost Shrimp’s piece of mind and safety needed for breeding.

After one to two weeks, females will be noticeable with rows of hundreds of eggs beneath their tails.

So, What do you think about Ghost Shrimp?


  • You can buy them at a low price (around 1$- 3$).
  • They have a short life span.
  • Cannot combine with predator fish.
  • Excellent scavenger fish.
  • Can use as a feeder fish. (please don’t do it for these little guys.)


We firmly believe that now you have a comprehensive idea regarding Ghost Shrimp by going through the above guide. Stay tuned with us for more fish stories in the future!

If you have any problem with these guys, you can comment here and also you can share your knowledge about them.
Feel Free to contact me via email.

Photo credit: psyte on Visualhunt / CC BY-ND
Photo credit: psyte on / CC BY-ND


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