Have you been thinking about adding some ghost shrimp to your aquarium? They make great tank cleaners, and they’re fun to watch. They’re cheap too — what more could you want?
But, do ghost shrimp eat each other? Is it safe to house more than a single ghost shrimp in your tank?
Keep reading to find out if it’s safe to keep several ghost shrimp together.
Do Ghost Shrimp Eat Each Other?
Ghost shrimp are scavengers, not hunters. They will not eat a fellow adult ghost shrimp unless it has died.
Ghost shrimp are not generally hunters. Sometimes, if they’re hungry enough, they may go after a live critter. Still, they will usually go after small fish, snails, or smaller shrimp. It’s quite rare for them to try and kill each other.
What Do Ghost Shrimp Eat?
Although there are sometimes exceptions, ghost shrimp are generally peaceful.
Rather than hunting, they will stick to the bottom of the tank, searching for food. They will eat just about anything they can find around the tank. Algae, plant matter, leftover food…it’s all fair game.
It’s not common for ghost shrimp to go after living animals, but it’s possible.
See also: Can Shrimp Live With Goldfish?
When Might A Ghost Shrimp Eat Another Ghost Shrimp?
Ghost shrimp are typically scavengers, not hunters. Sometimes, they will go after tankmates, usually if there isn’t enough food in the tank. If this happens, they’ll usually go after the fish before one of their own.
The only time a ghost shrimp is likely to eat another adult ghost shrimp is if it’s dead.
Ghost shrimp are scavengers and will happily eat tankmates who have died. It’s not uncommon to see your ghost shrimp snacking on your newly dead fish before you can remove it from the tank.
Dead ghost shrimp are no different. If a ghost shrimp dies in your aquarium, the other ghost shrimp will likely snack on it until you remove the body.
Adult Ghost Shrimp Will Eat Baby Ghost Shrimp
Although adults won’t usually kill other adults, ghost shrimp will kill babies.
It’s very common for ghost shrimp to go after other shrimp that are smaller than them. This is why it’s not recommended to house ghost shrimp with species like cherry shrimp.
If you’re hoping to breed your ghost shrimp, you’ll want to make sure there are lots of hiding spaces. Not only will the baby shrimp have to hide from the fish in your tank, but they’ll have to hide from adult ghost shrimp too.
Male Ghost Shrimp Will Fight Over Food
Male ghost shrimp will also fight each other when it’s feeding time. They’re very territorial and will attack each other to keep the food for themselves.
Despite this, it’s very unlikely that one shrimp will kill the other. In fact, it’s very unlikely that they’ll actually harm each other at all.
For one thing, the females don’t tolerate fighting. Female ghost shrimp are much larger than their male counterparts. When they notice the males fighting with each other, they will break up the fight.
Why Is My Ghost Shrimp Killing Everything? I Thought They Weren’t Aggressive?
If your ghost shrimp is overly aggressive, it’s probably not a true ghost shrimp. There are times when ghost shrimp are aggressive, but it’s not very common.
Ghost shrimp are small, transparent shrimp. They don’t have many distinguishing features. So, they often get mixed up with other species of shrimp.
The store may have easily sold you a “ghost shrimp” that wasn’t a ghost shrimp at all.
For example, whisker shrimp look very much like ghost shrimp. It’s not uncommon for someone to buy a “ghost shrimp” that’s really a whisker shrimp. Unfortunately, whisker shrimp are quite aggressive. So, they will likely attack the animals in your aquarium.
Thinking of adding your ghost shrimp with betta fish? See our article here
Ghost shrimp are generally peaceful animals, so it’s not common for them to fight each other. It’s even less common for them to kill each other.
The only time you’re likely to see a ghost shrimp eat another ghost shrimp is if it’s dead. They are opportunistic, so if a fellow ghost shrimp has died, they will see it as their next meal.