Red Nosed Shrimp
Red Nosed Shrimp

Red Nosed Shrimp

By jbeining75. Part of: The Real Algae Eaters: A Series on Freshwater Algae Eating Shrimp

The next shrimp in The Real Algae Eaters series is the Red Nosed Shrimp. Other common names include Rhino Shrimp (named for the rhino shaped nose), Red Fronted Shrimp, Rudolph Shrimp, Rudolph Red Nosed Shrimp (named for its red nose), Red-Stripe Shrimp and Rocket Shrimp (for being a fast swimmer). It is assigned the scientific name of caridina gracilirostris.

The Red Nosed Shrimp is native to the coastal areas of India and Southeast Asia. They are common to brackish water but will readily adapt to most water conditions and even freshwater habitats. However, if breeding in nature and in an aquarium the larvae will need brackish water to develop. Shortly after birth the developed larvae can be slowly acclimated to freshwater where it can then thrive. This species is a distinctive species in the shrimp community. They are popular for their Rhino shaped nose and their distinctive red marking on their nose or rostrum. They are different from most common freshwater shrimp in that they actually are true swimmers not runners like most others.

In the aquarium the Red Nosed Shrimp will prefer a slightly brackish setup but if properly acclimated can thrive in a freshwater environment. Ideal pH range for the shrimp 6.5 to 7.5 but as with most marine animals/invertebrates they can quickly adapt to most environments. As with all invertebrates that are less hardy than most fish and are susceptible to ammonia and nitrite levels even at very low levels above 0. Due to this they should be kept in a stable tank that is well planted. If possible a pH over 8.0 should be avoided as this shrimp species prefers slightly lower pH’s that tend to range in the acidic portion of the scale. As for water hardness soft to hard is acceptable as they will adapt as long as it is stable. The ideal temperature for this shrimp ranges from 68-78 but as with most shrimp they are slightly colder water and shouldn’t be kept above 80 degrees. For life expectancy the red nosed shrimp generally lives slightly over a year setting it on the same life expectancy of the Malaysian Rainbows, slightly higher than ghost shrimp, and slightly lower than the Amano. Of these expectancies are at ideal tank perimeters. As with all shrimp in the aquarium setting they should not be kept with larger cichlids or aggressive or carnivorous fish of any type. If kept with these species they will be viewed as a food source and their experience in your aquarium will be short lived. The red nosed shrimp have a slightly different coloration between the males and females. The males are generally more colorful as is common through the aquatic community of species. The females are generally a more transparent coloration. However both will show the brilliant red markings on their nose. Different from most shrimp the red nosed is commonly found hovering in between plants and mid water. Most shrimp are leaf hangers. When the red nosed hover they can be found almost upside down with their nosed pointed towards the substrate. An interesting feature about the nose of the red nosed shrimp is that if during shipping or fleeing the nose is broke off, it will re-grow itself. Due to the shrimps small size and relatively mild behavior (a little more aggressive than most shrimp), they should be kept at around 1-2 per gallon and with shrimp of like size. The red nosed shrimp will eat various food sources and are natural filter feeders and algae eaters. They will consume hair algae and other common algae that are developed on the tanks décor and surfaces. They will also filter algae off of plant surfaces. If no algae or food sources are provided they have been known to eat small leaves off of plants as well.

In conclusion the red nosed shrimp are a little harder to keep and breed due to their brackish need for development. However they can quickly adapt to most freshwater settings that are provided. They are small and mildly docile and can be kept with other shrimp of like size and temperament. They are amazing looking shrimp and hover unlike most shrimp. Due to the many various differences between most shrimp they have become popular in the planted aquarium community.

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