What Type of Fish Eat Shrimp?

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Small and protein-packed, shrimp are a staple in the diets of many sea creatures. They have a lot of predators in the water and on the land. If you decide to purchase shrimp for your aquarium or tank, note that there are only a few fish that won't eat them. Shrimp can live in fresh water or salt water but cannot go between both.

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Shrimp are a staple in the diets of many sea creatures.
Image Credit: Narongrit Sritana/iStock/GettyImages

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These shellfish are low in calories but are packed with nutrients. Sea creatures, animals, and people who consume shrimp will get iodine, iron, vitamin B12, protein, magnesium, and zinc, though they have a higher level of cholesterol. Shrimp are not just food. You can keep shrimp as pets on their own and put them in a tank with herbivore fish that do not pose a threat, or you can create a shrimp aquarium just for these invertebrates.

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Different shrimp species

Among the various shrimp genus are more than 2,000 shrimp species, though only a small amount are accessible. Some common breeds include the emperor shrimp, pinto shrimp, Amano shrimp, cleaning shrimp, red cherry shrimp, tiger shrimp, and pistol shrimp. Shrimp of every color but purple can be found and are often added to freshwater aquariums.

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Some fish live in salt water, while others can only reside in fresh water. If either of those breeds are placed in the wrong type of water, they won't survive. Saltwater fish need salinity higher than 35 gm/kg. Shrimp are omnivores and are not picky when it comes to their diet. They eat virtually anything they find, from a variety of plants and small fish to decaying matter and even dead shrimp.

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Fish who eat shrimp

If you're considering adding shrimp to your fish tank, the types of aquarium fish with whom they cannot live are goldfish, discus, cichlids, gourami, angelfish, and betta fish. While some fish can live with shrimp peacefully under the right conditions, these breeds are known to eat shrimp and should be kept away from them. Any large fish are likely to eat shrimp and so are omnivorous fish, so both of these types should be avoided.

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While most fish have a plentiful plethora of predators after them, the mantis shrimp is better at defending himself. There are 450 species of mantis shrimp in a large variety of colors and sizes. These shellfish are predatory invertebrates who can defend themselves and attack other sea creatures using their smasher and spearer claws to fight and kill.

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Fish who coexist with shrimp

Smaller fish can be potential tank mates with shrimp. They even sometimes form symbiotic relationships. Seek out algivores, who won't have any interest in eating your shrimp. Zebra otos and dwarf rasboras are good choices due to their size and diet. For shrimp to live with fish in general, the ecosystem of the tank needs to be balanced.

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New shrimp owners may want to start out with a separate tank for their shrimp. The right setup is crucial to keeping your shrimp happy and healthy. Invest in an aquarium, heater, thermometer, and filtration system. A test kit is important for making sure the water levels are right for your shrimp to thrive, and you can choose the type of substrate that fits your needs.

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