Today we will introduce you to one of the most popular shrimp used for aquascaping – the Amano shrimp – it is one of the most famous shrimp in the aquarium. Scientifically it is called Caridina multidentata, the outdated spelling is Caridina japonica. The shrimp, which originates from southern Japan, got its name from the famous aquascape pioneer Takashi Amano. It is found in the rivers of Japan which flow into the Pacific Ocean. These rivers offer dense vegetation and light to strong currents.

Of course we will not only look at the appearance of the shrimp, but you will also learn everything about keeping, socializing and breeding. What’s especially nice about the up to 5 cm large Amano shrimp is that it can live to be eight years old with good care. But not only the high life expectancy is a joy, but also the fact that the shrimp are real algae specialists and eat them up continuously. There is probably no shrimp that destroys more algae in an aquarium. The small invertebrates are extremely active, very curious, peaceful towards their fellow occupants and also quickly become trusting.

Amanogarnele fact sheet

Age: up to 8 years with good care and suitable food
Size: Female ca. 5 cm – male ca. 4 cm
Social behaviour: very peaceful, suitable for a community aquarium
Food: Omnivor omnivore – prefers algae
Breeding: very difficult and only possible in salt water (larvae)
Temperature: 16-28° C
Water: soft-hard
pH value: 6-8
Water hardness: 5-18° dGh, 2-8° dKh
Pelvic size: small – from 60 litres
Posture: simple, also for beginners
Posture: Group, Society
Ground: Sand or fine gravel
Planting: lush
Superfamily: Atyoidea
Family: Freshwater shrimps (Atyidae)
Look: transparent body with line and dot patterns

Amano shrimp appearance, age and size

basuka / Pixabay

The Amano shrimp gets comparatively old. With very good living conditions, such as the right environment, the right food and the right water values, the freshwater shrimp can live up to 8 years. However, this is already a very high age, normally it becomes 6-7 years old. The almost transparent body with the patterns in the form of dots and lines is very beautiful to look at. Depending on the amount of humic acid in the water, the appearance of the Amano shrimp can also change. The body can appear reddish to brown.

When it comes to body size, the females become significantly larger than the males, with up to 5.5 cm. They usually grow to 4.5 to 5 cm in size. But not only the body length is different, the females also have a much more massive body with large belly pockets in the back.

Amanoshrimp skinning

The Amano shrimp shed its skin. As you can read in the section “Food”, you should pay attention to a healthy diet, so that the moulting only takes place when the skin is really ready for it.

Amanogarnele posture

The Amano shrimp is the first choice when it comes to combating algae, especially thread algae. Whereby one should always make sure that the cause of the algae formation should also be fought, otherwise it will be difficult to get the problem under control with shrimps alone. In order for the Caridina multidentata to have a long life, you should not only pay attention to the correct diet, but also to the water values. The recommendations for the appropriate water value can vary depending on the literature. We use the following water values in our pool (within the tolerance of the profile):

  • pH value: 6.3-7.4
  • Temperature: 22-25° C
]If you choose a higher temperature, the metabolism of the amanos is stimulated and they will not reach such a high age. The most important factor for a vital shrimp, however, is the food intake, which you can read more about in the section "Food".

The peaceful inhabitant

The extremely sociable aquarium inhabitants do not like to be alone and can be kept not only in company with other peaceful aquarium inhabitants like fish, but especially in a group of other Amano shrimp. It is a good idea to put 6-10 animals in the tank. If there is enough space and food available, you can of course add more. Some books write that keeping shrimp is possible from an aquarium size of 40 cm, we recommend a minimum of 60 cm. Special attention should be paid to the fact that the tank is already running for a while and offers a good grown planting. The planting can, no should even be, quite lush. It is also nice that the Amano shrimp does not attack the plants.

In addition to good planting, the Amano shrimp should be offered plenty of hiding places. Roots, wood and leaves are particularly suitable for this. As soil you can offer sand or very fine gravel in the aquarium. If you choose a gravel that is too coarse, you will have the problem that food and debris will be deposited in cracks and cavities where the Amanos can't reach. Since the Amano shrimp originally comes from a river, there should also be a current. This does not have to be very strong. When the tank is ready, you can observe how the Amanos enter the current and get stuck there to take in food. Otherwise the beautiful shrimp is quite undemanding as far as the setup is concerned.

Amano shrimp plants

The abundant planting can best be done with the following plants:

  • Javamoos
  • Water pollution
  • Hornwort
]These rather fast-growing plants collect plenty of food and are the ideal place to hide.

Amano Shrimp Food

Especially the nutrition is wrongly operated by many aquarium owners. Although the Amano shrimp are omnivores and also eat the normal fish food, they remain healthy, vital and satisfied only if you give them vegetable food or a flake food with a high plant content. Besides the algae they eat fish food (fine flake food), granules and tablets. If you want to do something good for your shrimp and enjoy them for a long time, you can also give them special shrimp food. Frozen food is also suitable as a welcome change. In nature, Amano shrimp feed on growth, plankton and partly on plant remains and carrion.

As always, the best food is achieved by copying nature. Those who consume too much protein will notice a much higher and earlier death rate. A healthy diet also helps with skinning. If the food is appropriate for the species, the shrimp will only skin itself when the skin is ready for it. Dry leaves should also be given: Leaves from oak and beech, for example, are eaten right down to the carcass. Vegetables that have been previously boiled with boiling water are also very healthy. Cucumber is particularly popular. But don't forget, as is always the case with vegetables, to take it out of the pool after 24 hours.

Amanogarnele socialization

The Amano shrimp is very peaceful and there are no real fights among the shrimp. The Amano shrimp can actually deal with any roommate who is also peaceful. Therefore, small to medium sized fish are particularly suitable. You should avoid predators. Dwarf shrimp are particularly good company.

Amano shrimp eat fish

Even though Google searches for "Amano shrimp eat fish" and some report about it in forums, we cannot confirm this. If the fish are not already lying on the bottom and are about to die or dead, then the Amano shrimp will certainly not eat them. Also other shrimp need not be afraid of the Amanos. The only case in which an Amano shrimp might go to another shrimp is if there is an extreme lack of protein in the food or body (for example after moulting) and the other shrimp is severely weakened. However, this is not a normal case.

Amano shrimp breeding

Breeding the Amano shrimp is not a nice hobby because of the high degree of difficulty and the enormous effort. The larvae need brackish water or seawater for development. The larvae go through several stages until the shrimp is ready. Reproduction is not possible in fresh water.

Amano shrimp eggs and reproduction

Amano shrimps produce about 2000 eggs every four to six weeks. Once the eggs have been fertilized, they migrate into the abdominal pockets of the pregnant female. Now the process takes about 6 weeks and the female will release the eggs. In the best case 2000 larvae hatch (in fresh water - here they would only survive up to three days). The larvae are very small (one millimeter) and milky transparent. Now the larvae have to get into salt water or brackish water (salt content 1.6-3.5%). Higher breeding success is supposedly achieved in pure seawater. When the newcomers are allowed back into fresh water does not depend on age but on size. As soon as the young shrimp are 5-6 mm in size, they no longer need salt water. For breeding, you should use an air-operated sponge filter so that the animals do not disappear in the filter.

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