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[AGA-Member] FYI on Amano Shrimp

As I mentioned in my first post to this list earlier this evening, I'm
setting up a new planted tank, the first for many years.  I'd read that
Amano shrimp are wonderful for eating algae, so I added a few of them a few
days ago (I know that's early - only a week in - but I'm hoping they'll be
okay; there are 8 in a 38 gallon tank).  The tank is just getting going, so
I've been monitoring pH, nitrite, and ammonia levels regularly and have been
doing some partial water changes to keep the ammonia levels in check.


I've been reading up as much as I can on this species (including AGA member
list archives), and I'd like to share the following website links for those
of you who might like to have them handy:


The Caridina japonica Site



Freshwater Shrimp in the Aquarium: Description And General Information For
the Interested Hobbyist

by Joe Anderson



Everything About Caridina japonica



Amano Shrimp

by Janna Kate



The last two sites are in German:


Caridina japonica, die "Amanogarnele" Yamato-numa-ebi



Zucht der "Algengarnele" Caridina japonica




Here and there I saw mention of Amano shrimp sometimes munching on plants.
In my few days of experience with them, I can confirm this.  Our Amano
shrimp have taken quite a liking to our Italian Vallisneria (Vallisneria
spiralis), and have been munching holes through the leaves in spots,
especially towards the leaf ends.  Our tank currently has six V. spiralis
(most about 20 inches or so tall), one Echinodorus "ozelot", and a very
large handful of Riccia fluitans.  The vallisneria are the only plants
getting eaten (the others get cleaned, but they don't seem to be getting
noticeably consumed).


To keep the shrimp from destroying the vallisneria, I've been feeding them
slices of blanched cucumber (peeled - I didn't want them to ingest any of
that wax that's on the skin) and blanched baby pattypan squash (they don't
care for the yellow kind, but the green variety has been well-received).
I've been removing the vegetables within a day so that they don't foul the
water.  I don't plan to keep feeding the shrimp extra food, but since they
just moved to this tank I want them to get the best start they can.


BTW, these shrimp are not fazed by humans - I had one of them that didn't
want to get off the cucumber I was bringing to the surface to throw out; he
hung on to the cucumber until I had it almost to the surface!  They really
are intriguing characters, and they come running and swimming towards me if
they think I'm bringing or stirring up food for them.  I expected them to be
shy, but these aren't.  They appear well-fed and healthy, and they're really


Tomorrow I have a large plant order arriving, so I'll be increasing the
smorgasbord for the shrimp.  I expect that once there are more plants from
which they can clean the algae, they'll leave the vallisneria alone.  And if
not, then I'm sure there are other plants which won't taste as good which
will take their place (and I'll move the vallisneria out to a backup tank).


So if you have Amano shrimp you want to distract from tasty plants, blanched
vegetables are a useful option :-)


With regards to all,






Kirsten Klinghammer

Rescue, California, USA


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