Tough little shrimp.
Fiery in Color and Personality
The red fire shrimp, known scientifically as Lysmata debelius, is characterized by its blazing red color highlighted by bright white limbs and antennae. Beautiful additions to tanks, these fish also tend to be quite aggressive towards each other and other species that enter their territory.
In the Wild
Native to the reef waters of the Indo-Pacific, these shrimp typically crawl over the surface of the ocean’s floor. During much of the day, they will hide to avoid predators, but when they make an appearance, they are known to have a very busy job of cleaning marine fish with external parasites. This is important in the wild as many fish have no other way to get rid of these types of parasites.
Because they are hermaphrodites, fire shrimp have no distinguishable differences between males and females. These colorful shrimp can grow up to 2 inches and live for one to two years.
In the Tank
Like many other species of saltwater shrimp, the red fire shrimp is a cleaner shrimp, meaning they will clean the tank. Because of their aggressive nature, these shrimp will typically need to have at least 30 gallons to themselves. If more shrimp are desired in the same tank, it’s necessary to have a much larger tank, so they can have their own territories.
When given enough space, they will do well with other species of shrimp and fish that won’t prey on them. In addition, they are known to pick at coral polyps, so in a reef aquarium, hardy types of coral are necessary.
In tanks, red fire shrimp will clean up after other fish and eat the algae on decorations and coral. Since they are shy creatures, they will also need plenty of caves and crevices to hide in when they’re not picking up after their tank mates.
Vibrant Additions to Tanks
Having a fire shrimp in your tank can have many benefits. They will clean up after other fish and help maintain good water quality. So, even if you accidentally feed your other fish too much, your fire shrimp will help you out. Despite being known for their bossy behavior, fire shrimp can add a pop of color to your reef tank and help keep it clean.
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Red Fire Shrimp Photo by Jim Gifford
Found on Flickr.com
License: Some Rights Reserved
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