Anyone breed ghost shrimp?
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Old 05-22-2011, 03:30 PM   #1
A.M. Aquatics
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Anyone breed ghost shrimp?


Yesterday, I discovered that a pond out in the country has some very amazing inhabitants, such as longear sunfish, banded sunfish, topminnows, and shiners. We swiped the dipnet near some aquatic grasses and started to catch ghost shrimp! I never knew they lived here until now. Many of them were even berried. I always thought of ghost shrimp as non-exciting, short lived shrimp, bnut after seeing them after so many years, I'm tempted to try them again, maybe in an outdoor tub. Not only do I want to keep them again, but I think it would be a neat summer project to breed them. I know these are low order shrimp (found out they don't need salt water), and I do have acess to powdered spirulina, small plastic aquariums, etc. Has anyone successfully bred these shrimps and raised them? What is your method, and could you give me some advice on breeding?
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Old 05-22-2011, 05:23 PM   #2
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Hmmm. I know that there are many species of ghost shrimp, or at least, clear shrimp which are sold as ghost shrimp. Furthermore, I know that there is at least one species of "ghost shrimp" which requires salt/brackish water for the larvae to survive. Do you live near the ocean? This is pretty cool, because if not, you may have a species that will breed in fresh... Were they totally clear, or were they brownish?
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Old 05-22-2011, 05:43 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geniusdudekiran View Post
Hmmm. I know that there are many species of ghost shrimp, or at least, clear shrimp which are sold as ghost shrimp. Furthermore, I know that there is at least one species of "ghost shrimp" which requires salt/brackish water for the larvae to survive. Do you live near the ocean? This is pretty cool, because if not, you may have a species that will breed in fresh... Were they totally clear, or were they brownish?
The pond where we found them was way out in the country, no where near the bay or the gulf. It was right next to a freshwater river. I know these were freshwater because there was a good population in the pond, and the pond did not even connect to the river, which was again, also freshwater. Many of them were berried, or had saddles. They looked like this, but a little more clear:

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Old 05-22-2011, 05:47 PM   #4
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Actually, I found an almost exact match pic. Looks more like this:

http://greentigrate.com/wp-content/u...mp-300x199.jpg
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Old 05-22-2011, 06:21 PM   #5
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Hmmm. That's very interesting. You could try to breed them as they definitely breed in fw... There's not much interest in ghost shrimp here on the forums, but I have to admit that they are cool in a different way... Good luck. It would be cool if you make a biotope with plants and shrimp, maybe even substrate and rocks, from this pond. Whatever you do, please keep me posted!
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Old 05-22-2011, 06:30 PM   #6
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yeah, and since they're native, I had an idea of keeping them in an outdoor rubbermaid tub with native aquatic plants and probably that same kind of gunk substrate from the pond. If I do come through with this, I'll keep trak of everything and keep you all updated.
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Old 05-22-2011, 07:07 PM   #7
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i was under the impression that ghost shrimps are one of those that require salt water at the larval stages
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Old 05-22-2011, 09:54 PM   #8
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i was under the impression that ghost shrimps are one of those that require salt water at the larval stages
They do have a larval stage, but a large misconception about them is that they need salt water to develop just because of their larval stage. They can be bred in freshwater, but raising the larva is said a little more difficult, mainly de to the fact that not mny people provide suitable food.
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Old 05-23-2011, 01:58 AM   #9
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i see so unlike amano shrimps that need that salt water these were thought to need salt cuz they have a larval stage in which people were having trouble getting past that stage?
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Old 05-23-2011, 02:18 AM   #10
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I did in the past. They are harder than RCS and CRS species because of the low order breeding. Very rewarding to get them breeding though. I did it with LOTS of plant cover in the tank (almost all moss) and it was a mature tank so I didn't feed anything.

Pretty simple to breed, but just not as prolific as the others. The baby shrimp look really cool too.

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Old 05-23-2011, 02:31 AM   #11
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It's easy to breed them in a barebottom tank with just a sponge filter, the fry are planktonic, so breeding them outdoors in a rubbermaid would certainly work great. There's also many phyto products you can use to feed them indoors in an aquarium (or you can culture some green water in 2 liters).

I bred a few batches for gourami food, but found a local source for very cheap, and I changed the ghost shrimp tank into a cherry shrimp tank.

Are you going to breed them for food?
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Old 05-24-2011, 07:11 PM   #12
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I currently have two batches of baby ghost shrimp. The first just appeared in my sump tank, already past the larval stage. I put a light above the sump tank, and added some water sprite and java fern. At first I wasn't feeding them anything extra, but as they started to grow a couple died. I realized they had gotten big enough to require extra food. Once I started feeding them some crushed flake food I haven't had any other deaths that I'm aware of.

The second batch came from I berried female I removed from the tank. I had prepared a goldfish bowl with sand, rocks, java fern & water sprite for the first batch; but I couldn't catch the little buggers so I decided to leave them in place. Just after getting the fish bowl prepared I was pruning the plants and a pregnant female came up to investigate. I caught her and put her in the goldfish bowl. I fed her crushed flake food and algae flakes. Two weeks later she released her eggs and I had 15-20 larvae floating in the fish bowl. Since the fish bowl had been setting near a window for two weeks there were lots of really tiny critters swimming around, so I figured there was plenty of plankton for the larvae to eat. They have just changed from the free floating larval stage to miniature adults. Unfortunately they can now hide so well that I have no idea how many survived the transition. It appears as if they molt after about 4-5 days, but I can't be sure. I'll just have to wait and watch to see how many survived.

I've had them breed in my 50 gallon community tank on several occasions, and at least twice the breeding seemed to be triggered by the addition of a water sprite to the tank. I guess that gives them places to hide at all levels of the tank.

Based on my limited experience the hardest part is getting the little ones to survive the first week, and then not get eaten as they grow. You might try fencing off a small area with some fine netting and filling it with lots of plants. That might give the baby shrimp a good hiding place. The larvae are going to be easy prey in an outdoor pond, but I'm not sure what to do about that.

Keep us posted on how it goes, I like watching the larvae float around and trying to grab food.

Last edited by smannell; 05-24-2011 at 07:13 PM.. Reason: corrected typos
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Old 05-24-2011, 11:03 PM   #13
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I find it somewhat shameful that we don't tend to keep many native species here in the US, and have just recently (in the past month) begun a project to try to make ghost shrimp more interesting specimens.

They already express a bit of color (mostly a white bar across the back, red stripes on antennae, and black dots around the head,) and I've been picking out the most darkly colored shrimp I can find from the hundreds in feeder tanks and keeping them together. My intent is to get them breeding and start selecting for darker shrimp. (You can really tick off a fish store employee by asking them to catch a particular feeder shrimp that costs $0.20, I usually ask them to get a particular one and that I'll take any extras they happen to catch on the way.)

I've currently got shrimp that look like they're filled with weak tea, but if you look at wild versions of many of the shrimp we keep, they started as similar critters. Given time, who knows what will turn up? Odds are good that my patience will run out before I have something truly cool, but you never know.
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Old 07-14-2011, 12:10 AM   #14
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Any updates on your ghost shrimp breeding jason?

I too want to breed the ghosts for color, which would be really cool. I have a couple that have some very dark, nearly black, coloration going through their bodies, with quite distinct red stripes on the antennae and elbows of the front legs, and also red dots on the tail fin with white dots surrounding them. They are very cool looking. I just need to get a tank set up for them so that I can start with the breeding.
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Old 07-14-2011, 03:31 AM   #15
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Not really. I've managed to get them to breed but it's slow going. The juveniles' color is far paler than the adults, which are already fairly pale. I'm trying to get a whole bunch of them before I cull the first time. I'm keeping them in a species tank that is planted and not kept too terribly neat so that there is a lot of algae/microscopic food for the larvae. That said, I've had at least half a dozen berried females and only have perhaps half a dozen juvenile shrimp at this point. I don't pretend to be the ghost shrimp whisperer though, so hopefully that rate will improve substantially over time.
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