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Freshwater   Invertebrates

Crystal Shrimp CRS/CBS
(Caridina cantonensis Crystal)

Crystal Shrimp CRS/CBS


Scientific name
Caridina cantonensis var. Crystal
(formerly Caridina cf.cantonensis Bee)

Common name
Crystal Red Shrimp (CRS)
Crystal Black Shrimp (CBS)
Black bee


what are his countries of origin?

Origin: Southern China
Biotope: Asian


what are the physical differences between males and females?

The female is usually larger, with a larger abdomen. Its antennules are smaller than those of the male.





what is the minimum volume for this species?

25 L / 5 imp gal / 7 US gal


what are the water parameters for the maintenance of this shrimp?

T°: 20 to 23°C or 68 to 73°F
pH: 6.2 to 6.5
GH: 5°dGH - KH: 0





what is the maximum size of this shrimp?

1 to 3 cm (0.4 to 1.2")


what is the average Longevity of this shrimp?

2 years

Living zone

in which area of the aquarium does this shrimp live?



sociability of the species



How to feed the Crystal shrimp?


How to feed the Crystal shrimp?

Shrimp are alguivorous and scavengers. They are quite autonomous and will already find a stock of food in a well-run aquarium: seaweed!

In order not to overfeed, alternate different types of food. So you can give Spirulina base lozenges (once a week maximum), vegetable slices (zucchini, cucumber, carrot), mussels, shrimp or squid. Any food that will not be eaten quickly will be removed to avoid polluting the water.

You can also offer them tree leaves such as chestnut, chestnut, hazel, oak ... To avoid diseases, put them 30 seconds in the microwave and then leave them in water so that they sink, then introduce them into the shrimp aquarium. Or dried nettle leaves, which they particularly appreciate. These leaves can stay longer in the aquarium because they do not generate pollution.

Finally, a golden rule will save you a lot of problems: feed little, but often! In fact, a too generous distribution can be dangerous because it will pollute the water and raise the nitrates NO3, which can prove mortal for the shrimps.


What kind of behavior does the Crystal shrimp have?


What kind of behavior does the Crystal shrimp have?

Caradina Cantonensis shrimp are peaceful and never aggressive. They possess a gregarious instinct that should be satisfied by the presence of at least 10 individuals.

They spend most of their time looking for food. Despite appearances, they can be very fast, even dazzling! Sometimes you will see them «walking» in open water.


Who can live with the Crystal shrimp?


Who can live with the Crystal shrimp?the Crystal shrimp?

The family of invertebrates of which this shrimp is a part are the natural prey of fish. You need therefore to be very cautious about the associations to consider. For example, big fish are to be avoided. For smaller fish, only young shrimp will suffer from predation, adult shrimp will be too large to eat.

Note that you can still associate with Ancistrus, Corydoras or Otocinclus without any loss (attention to the compatibility of the parameters of your aquarium). You can also maintain them with other shrimp species provided that there is no risk of hybridization (see «Good to know»).


How to breed the Crystal shrimp?


How to breed the Crystal shrimp?

Rather easy since it does not require passage in brackish water. If there are fish, build many hiding places and you should have a large number of small survivors. It should be noted, however, that this species is less prolific than Neocaridina shrimp and that each breeding will give birth to no more than 30 younglings.

The key is to respect the maintenance parameters, and in particular the temperature which should be around 22/23°C or 71/73°F.

There is not much to do to trigger breeding, except that the aquarium is good for shrimp and there are enough (at least 20).

Eggs are kept under the belly of the female for 20/25 days. It is said that she is grained. You can see her airing her eggs regularly. At hatching, the young shrimps are miniature replicas of adults and are autonomous.

Its aquarium

Which aquarium for the Crystal shrimp?

Its aquarium

Which aquarium for the Crystal shrimp?

un aquarium idéal

The volume is not very important, it is especially the surface on the ground which it is necessary to privilege. In fact, shrimps spend most of their time searching the ground for food, so they need space! Choose a rectangular bowl wider than it is tall, with a good length.

One of the most important elements for successful maintenance of these shrimp is the SOIL. A «technical floor» (or «active floor») must be used. These soils have the particularity of lowering the KH to 0 or 2, reducing GH, acidifying the pH. Concretely, install 1 cm of Pouzzolane (small granulometry) at the bottom of the aquarium. It is the porous support necessary for the installation of bacteria. Cover with 3 cm of active soil (Malaya Aqua Soil from ADA, Florabase, Amazonia or Oliver Knott for example). It is useless and harmful to clean this soil too often.

To avoid quickly depleting this soil, you will need to use a mineralized osmosis water. You will mineralize with Salt Preis Discus until you obtain the desired hardness. It is desirable to obtain a conductivity value of 300 μS. For this, count about 1.37g of salt for 5 liters of osmosis water. You increase the GH without touching the value of KH. A 100% use of osmosis water is also possible.

Filtration side, remember to protect the suction strainer so that it does not suck your young shrimp.

Shrimps need natural vegetation, and prefer mosses such as Riccia, Fissidens fontanus or Java moss. Choose plants without great lighting requirements because shrimps prefer screened aquariums (you can sift the lighting with floating plants). To complete the decoration to your taste, add roots and rocks (not limestone). Indeed, to feel safe, the Caradina Cantonensis need a lot of hiding places.

In its natural environment, shrimp soil is littered with tree leaves (chestnut, chestnut, hazel, oak...). You can breed this beautiful effect by lining the bottom of the aquarium with a good layer of leaf. In addition to the aesthetic aspect, these leaves will acidify the water and stabilize the pH.

You can space water changes in comparison to a fish tank. Indeed, shrimp are much less polluting (provided not to overfeed the animals, which will dirty the water as well as fish). Excessive water changes could destabilize water parameters and cause losses to your shrimp. Check the nitrite (NO2) and nitrate (NO3) values weekly. If the values are too high, make a change of 10 to 20% of the water and then repeat the control. In general, plan a water change of 10% each week.

Cover your aquarium to limit the evaporation of water. To complete the water level due to evaporation, it is very important to use PURE (salt-free) osmosis water to avoid changing the water parameters.

Good To know

Find all additional information!

Good To know

Find all additional information!

  • Crystal Black (CBS):
    crystal black shrimp

  • Crystal red (CRS):
    crystal red shrimp

  • Snow White (Golden):
    snow white shrimp

Crystal Black and Crystal Red can breed together. You will get predominantly black shrimp because the red gene is recessive.

This shrimp is much harder to maintain than its neighbor Neocaridina (family which includes the Red Cherry). The water parameters must be very stable. It is therefore recommended to have a minimum of experience in order to start maintenance of this species.

In addition, they are very sensitive to heavy metals such as copper for example. It will therefore be necessary to rinse the plants before introducing them into the shrimp aquarium. In addition, the use of fertilizers and medicines is to be avoided. In case of extreme necessity, refer to the instructions, in the precautions for use.

Source: Crevettes aquarium 42 - http://mathieuc.unblog.fr

Depending on the distribution of the white and colored areas, this gives a certain number of recognizable patterns. This distribution and colour density are measured by grades (ranging from A to SSS):

colour illustration of caridina
little colour illustration of caridina

Yours photos!

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By Encyclo-Caro

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By Encyclo-Caro

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By Encyclo-Caro


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