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Re: [APD] Re: Off topic -- Killer Ghost Shrimp -- What to Do?
There are several species sold as ghost shrimp in the US. They are
genus Palaemonetes and usually species paludosus or sometimes kadakensis
which are found inland in the US and can tolerate fresh or slightly
brackish water. The other species are mid to high brackish water, but
are sometimes sold for freshwater tanks. All are opportunistic
predators. The life span is 1 to 1.5 years. It is also possible that
some kind of long arm shrimp (genus Macrobrachium) was sold as a ghost
shrimp. The Macrobrachium are much more predatory than Palaemonetes.
If I had not seen it with my own eyes, I would not
have believed it. In my 65 gallon I have many
Japonica shrimp, two baby Red Cherry shrimp and three
Ghost shrimp (2 are 3/4", one is 1 1/2").
While cleaning my tank this afternoon, I saw the large
Ghost shrimp fly through the water, grab a male guppy,
and pin him down to the substrate and start picking at
him. I saw him eating one a couple of weeks ago, but
assumed that it had died of natural causes and he was
cleaning up the leftovers.
Since I have an extra 10 gallon sitting around I
promptly filled it halfway, threw in some cuttings and
removed all three Ghost shrimp. I have no equipment
for this extra tank except a powerhead with filter
module which I'm going set up now. I covered the top
with saran wrap since I don't have a lid. They will
get indirect natural daylight. I am wondering:
1) Will they be ok without a heater?
2) Do they need filtration if it's just 3 of them?
3) If the tank is only 1/2 full can I leave it
uncovered or will they still get out?
4) Why didn't they try to eat the Red Cherry Shrimp,
not soft enough?
I've never heard anything like this about Ghost shrimp
before. Any ideas on what to do with these 3 banditos
would be appreciated. I would like them to live out
their lives here and would like a way to keep them
happy with minimal investment. I'm not taking them
back to the store as they are feeder shrimp I think
and I couldn't bare to do that. Plant cuttings, food
and water changes are no problem. What else?
For meat in their diet you can give them white worms, chopped fish,
frozen mysis shrimp, frozen cyclops, and enriched live Artemia nauplii.
For veggies you can give them kale and collard greens which has lots
of vitamin A. They also like Tetra Marin pellets and Wardley's Shrimp
Pellets. There is anecdotal evidence that adding iodine to the water
helps them with their molting. Just a drop of the iodine supplement
used to dose salt water tanks with each water change is enough. They
can get enough iodine from their food, if it is the the right balance; I
just find it easer to add a drop of iodine and not worry about it. The
Palaemonetes ghost shrimp are all from a temperate climate so they don't
require a heater; if your room temp is above 60F they will be fine.
Members of other genus may like it to be above 70F. With only 3 in a 5
gallons of water and live plants you don't even need filtration. They
can jump a bit, but with the tank only half full I doubt they can get
out. It may be that the Red Cherry Shrimp can dart away and avoid the
ghost shrimp, but the guppy didn't try to avoid it until it was too late.
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