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Most dwarf shrimp aren't really good algae eaters contray to popular belief. Amano/Algae shrimp are, but red cherries will eat small bit but won't clean a tank. As for their effect on a bioload, it would be next to nothing.
 

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Dwarf shrimp won't clear heavy algae, but they do a decent job. If you have heavy algae, you need to look into your lighting to find the source of the problem.

I currently have 80+ cherry shrimp in my 17 gallon tank, along with around 20 small fish. The shrimp, and the three nerite snails do a great job of clearing my tank of algae. But my tank is pretty balanced in terms of lighting.

Depending on your filtration, you can definitely keep 20-30 plus shrimp in there without any problems. I would start with at least 10 shrimp, so they can populate easier, and can be spotted in the tank. If you have 2-3, you will never see them in a planted tank.

Shrimp tanks here at the fish street keep hundreds of shrimp in tanks smaller than 10 gallons, with only a big sponge filter running, no plants. The shrimp seem perfectly happy and colorful.

Here is my tank
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I can imagine you being right about only 2-3 being hard to spot in a well planted tank. I could get a few more but I don't want to get them reproducing left and right overrunning my tank with tons of shrimp babies. Maybe 5 or 6 to start with? I don't need them to be the main attraction in my tank.
 

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You could just buy males of females and you won't have the problem of them overrunning your tank.
 

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If you buy them on here you could probably get a seller to sort them for you by sex, though you might end up paying a bit more for the hassle. Adult females are a bit bigger than males, better colored, and usually have a saddle or eggs. I don't believe that they store sperm, but I could be wrong, so you should be fine getting saddled shrimp. That would let you know for certain that they are female without much risk. Males and unsaddled/unberried females can be confused fairly easily, as can males and juvenile females.

Are there fish in the tank already? If so, they'll probably eat the baby shrimp and keep the numbers down for you.

You've basically chosen the most prolific breeder of the shrimp that we keep and are trying to figure out how to keep it from breeding (RCS are the guppies of the shrimp world.) Another, much simpler option would be buying shrimp that are hardy but which people have great trouble breeding intentionally. Especially if you're looking for an algae eater, I'd get some amano shrimp. They aren't going to clean your tank up for you but they do graze on the stuff to a much greater extent than other aquarium shrimp. They also can't reproduce successfully in fresh water alone, as they require a brackish phase at some point in their development. One of the site sponsors, msjinkzd, sells them for a very reasonable price, $2 each. If that doesn't work, there are other shrimp that require brackish that might work better for you as well.
 

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I can imagine you being right about only 2-3 being hard to spot in a well planted tank. I could get a few more but I don't want to get them reproducing left and right overrunning my tank with tons of shrimp babies. Maybe 5 or 6 to start with? I don't need them to be the main attraction in my tank.
In my experience, I need quite a bit of cherries in my tank (17 gallon) for decent algae cleaning. Even with 100+ in my 17 gallon heavily planted tank, you do not see them too much, unless I put food out for them at the front of the tank.

If your population explodes, you won't have trouble selling them to your fish store or at the for sale forum.

Cherries adds a lot of color, and make the tank a lot more interesting. I find myself observing the shrimp alot more than the fish. :)
 
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