Amano Shrimp (Caridina multidentata) Overview

amano shrimp

Learn more about the Amano Shrimp (Caridina multidentata) from this complete overview

The Amano shrimp are freshwater shrimp of the genus Caridina, a fact that can also be deduced from the scientific Latin name of this shrimp species – Caridina multidentata. This genus has produced a large number of species. However, one should not make the mistake of considering the so-called Yamatonuma shrimp and the Japanese freshwater shrimp as additional species. These names are only synonyms with which the Amano shrimp are also named. The Amano shrimp are popular aquarium inhabitants in Germany, which are also extremely useful due to their hunger for algae. Nevertheless, the Amano shrimp differ in many ways from other shrimp species such as the White Pearl shrimp or the bee shrimp.

The overview below gives you all the information you need to successfully keep Amano shrimp in the aquarium.

Amano Shrimp Quick Facts

Common NameAmano Shrimp
Scientific NameCaridina multidentata
Care LevelEasy
ColorTransparent body with a slight white opacity
Lifespan2-3 Years
Suggested Tank Size20 gallons
Water Temperature Requirements70° – 78°F
pH Requirements6.5 – 7.5
Temperament & CompatibilityPeaceful

Appearance and characteristics of the Amano shrimp

Caridina multidentata , better known as Amano shrimp or Amano for short, belong to the primitive reproductive type.

The eggs are relatively small and the larvae can only develop in sea water.

The “real” Amano shrimp can be recognized by the longer rostrum (nose) compared to the ” fake ” ones.

Fully grown Amano shrimp are easy to recognize due to their size, the distinctive dot-line pattern, and the small eggs on the swimming legs of pregnant females and sometimes bluish body colors.

In addition to the relevant specialist literature, a good microscope and basic knowledge of shrimp anatomy are required for an exact identification of the species.

How such a determination can look like can be seen using the example of a back shrimp.

Not all Amano shrimp are equally intensely colored.

These differences can be observed most clearly immediately before and after molting.

The color varies depending on the nutritional status, age, general well-being, etc.

Where does the name Amano shrimp come from?

The animals are called Amano shrimp because Takashi Amano uses them frequently in his natural aquariums.

Do Amano shrimp have gender differences?

In males, the lower row of points consists of clearly separated and relatively clear points.

In females, the lower row of points consists of points that merge into one another and are not clearly recognizable. In addition, the females are considerably larger than the males.

Amano Shrimp Mating (1 Female with 2 Males)

Behaviors of the Amano shrimp

Amano shrimp are sociable animals, they graze the ground, plant leaves, etc. together.

Compared to other types of shrimp, they are less fearful. They even run easily over the hands etc. of the carer.

The male animals swim wildly through the pool as soon as the female spreads her pheromones and thus shows that she is ready to receive.

Keeping the Amano shrimp

You should always keep several animals of this type. At least 5 animals are recommended.

The Amano shrimp can be socialized with all peaceful fish, catfish etc.

Before socializing, water values, temperature, etc. must be considered.

Suitable and numerous hiding places have to be offered to them so that they can withdraw if fish become too intrusive, for example.

Are there larger animals in the aquarium, e.g. B. angelfish, Amano shrimp like to hide under plants, roots, stones or other decorative objects, so that they are almost impossible to find.

Sometimes they stay in tubes of the appropriate size that are open at both ends. They hardly go into caves.

Food for Amano shrimp

In a well-planted aquarium, in which not every dead leaf is removed immediately and in which fish are fed, Amano shrimp usually do not need to be specially fed. The Amanos get their share of the feed. Amanos are omnivores. Anything that comes before them will be eaten.

Amano shrimp eat algae. Algae should not be viewed as a nuisance in an aquarium with Amano shrimp. Algae actually belong to the biotope that aquarium owners strive for. An aquarium is not an operating theater or a clean room. But they don’t eat every type of algae. Apparently they have different tastes from animal to animal. Sometimes a certain type of alga is eaten and sometimes not, depending on the taste. If not available, you should always offer them algae. These are available in tablet form, etc.

Often they even prefer food that is offered. The more normal food they get, the less algae they eat. And they don’t shy away from stealing food from other roommates in the aquarium.

Amanos do not eat plants. They only eat the leaves of the plants when they are already dying. But they also pluck in places where no algae can be seen with the naked eyes. Presumably they eat microscopic algae coverings or microorganisms.

Amano shrimp can be seen quite well to see whether there is any need to feed.

Because the animals are quite transparent, the intestines can be seen well.

The intestine is the dark line just below the back that runs almost to the tail fan.

If the intestine is completely full, there is no need to feed.

If there are gap

Suitable feed for Amanos:

  • Shrimp food, e.g. B. in tablet form and as small pearls
  • Seaweed
  • Algae tablets
  • plankton
  • Cucumber, possibly lightly scalded so that they sink
  • salad
  • Crush the paprika with a fork
  • Flake food
  • Granulated feed
  • Spirulina tablets
  • Algae Wafers from Hikari
  • Black mosquito larvae occasionally
  • Red mosquito larvae occasionally
  • Tetra minitabs s in the brown intestinal canal, it must be fed.

Tablet feed has the advantage that it sinks to the bottom and can be easily eaten by the Amanos there.

Frozen food for shrimp can be made from chopped vegetables, very little fish meat and agar agar. Agar Agar is a gelling agent based on algae. The food can be frozen well in ice cube molds and, with the right amount of agar agar, retains its firmness even under water.

So that all the shrimp get some of the food, it can be distributed in the aquarium. Spirulina tablets can also be distributed if a fine and sharp knife is at hand.

Optimal water values ​​for Caridina multidentata

They are quite undemanding in terms of water conditions.

Suitable water values for Amanos:

  • Temperature: 16-27 ° C
  • pH value: 6.0 – 8.0
  • Total hardness: up to 20 ° dgH
  • Carbon hardness: up to 16 ° dH

Nitrate and nitrite should be kept in mind, but ammonia plays an even bigger role! Nitrogen in the water is poison for Amanos. You then get a kind of stiff joints, like a knight in rusty armor. Unfortunately, that’s not as funny as it sounds, it’s deadly. When the animals turn milky white, there is no more chance.

Amano shrimp are sensitive to heavy metals, especially copper. Therefore, caution is advised when administering medication in the community pool.
Fertilizer wool or lead rings from plants should be removed.

Amano shrimp, like all shrimp, seem to depend on a certain minimum amount of iodine in the water, otherwise there will be difficulties with molting. But Germany is a designated iodine deficiency area. In the case of molting problems, adding iodine can be useful.

Introducing and transferring Amano shrimp

According to some information, Caridina multidentata can tolerate high nitrite and nitrate levels. Takashi Amano uses them to prevent algae in the first few days in newly set up aquariums, such as B. in the book “Your hobby natural aquariums” by Takashi Amano from the Bede publishing house is described.

Because algae plagues rarely occur during the running-in phase of an aquarium, it is possible to wait until the aquarium has been run in before the Amano shrimp are inserted.

Amano shrimp, like fish, should be turned slowly. For example, you can run water from the aquarium through a throttled air hose to the shrimp. When about 3/4 of the water is aquarium water, most of the water in the shrimp is poured off so that no foreign water gets into the aquarium. Then the shrimp are used.

Introducing Amano shrimp

Can Amano shrimp escape from the aquarium?

It is often reported that Amanos climb out of the aquarium.

They also climb up smooth objects. They will probably only flee while they are new to the aquarium. As a rule, once they have settled in, they no longer crawl out of the aquarium.

You are of course on the safe side with a sealed aquarium. For example, fly screens, strawberry protection grids or the like can be stretched over the aquarium for the transitional period.

Amano shrimp escaping from a tank (Video)

Amano shrimp escaping from a tank

Propagating Amano shrimp

Adult Amano shrimp live in fresh water. The larvae need salt water to develop. In nature, the shrimp release the eggs in fresh water. The larvae hatch immediately and are transported towards the sea by the current. The larvae grow up in the sea and go through various stages. When they reach the shrimp stage, after a while they migrate upstream.

How to easily breed Amano Shrimp (Video)

How To Breed Amano Shrimp Easily

Pairing Amano shrimp

Amano shrimp mate every four to six weeks.

Mating usually occurs shortly after a female molts. Females ready to mate add attractants to the water.

The males sometimes swim back and forth for hours without a break and pursue females ready to mate.

A male always sneaks up on the slightly larger and stronger female from behind. This easily repels the male and turns a little so that the male cannot grab it from behind.

But after several attempts it succeeds. The male grabs the female from behind and holds her tight. Strong movements of the male’s webbed feet can be seen. It takes a few seconds, then the male lets go. A few days after mating, the female ready to mate visibly bears eggs.

Pregnant females

The eggs stick between the webbed feet, under the abdomen and are clearly recognizable as eggs.

The shrimp constantly moves the egg packets to add fresh water.

The female often bends and apparently works the eggs with her legs.

In the course of their development, the color of the eggs changes from dark gray or dark green to light gray or almost transparent.

There are reports that the eggs remained dark.

Other reports write of initially pink eggs that get darker and darker.

Depending on the temperature, the females bear for four weeks. However, the larvae are sometimes released after two weeks. Sometimes the females give up all of their eggs within a few hours.

Sometimes egg delivery takes a week. Egg release can possibly be stimulated by changing the water with cool water.

The larvae are extremely tiny, swim upside down and look like small parachutes. The larvae swim towards the light. The larvae can easily be mistaken for hoppers, but they are mostly on the panes.

Larval stages in Amano shrimp

Amano larvae go through nine different larval stages within four to six weeks before they finally become juvenile shrimp.

The larval stages can only be observed and differentiated with a microscope.

The first Zoea stage (1st to 10th day)

The larvae are about 1.55 mm long. The characteristic features of this larval stage are the sessile eyes, the lack of walking and swimming legs (only the beginning of the first walking leg can be seen) and the unsegmented antennae.

The second stage (4th to 13th day)

The larvae are about 1.76 mm in length. The eyes are stalked and mobile, the first pair of striding legs is recognizable as a forked appendage, the attachment of the second striding leg is recognizable.

The larvae of the first and second instar do not eat! The larvae live on the energy supply from the egg. In breeding, these two stages are probably also tricky because feeding is often started too early. This results in the water being contaminated with nutrients and bacteria.

Third stage (6th to 14th day)

The larvae are about 1.78 mm in length. Antenna base consists of three segments, 2nd striding leg forked, attachment of 3rd recognizable, tail fan separated from 6th abdominal segment.

Fourth stage (10th to 18th day)

The larvae are about 2.1 mm in length. 3rd stride leg forked, approach of 4th recognizable.

Fifth stage (12th to 22nd day)

The larvae are about 2.21 mm in length. 4th stride leg forked, approach of 5th recognizable.

Sixth stage (14th to 29th day)

The larvae are about 2.76 mm in length. 5. Forked stride leg, beginnings of swimming legs visible.

Seventh stage (15th to 31st day)

Are about 2.95 mm in length. Swim legs forked.

Eighth stage (16th to 33rd day)

Are about 3.9 mm in length. Swimming legs wider.

Ninth stage (22nd to 35th day)

Are about 5.01mm in length. Scissors of the first two striding legs are recognizable, swimming legs are almost finished.

First juvenile stage (24th to 28th day):

About 4.83 mm in length. Reduced exopods of the striding legs, training of the brush on the scissors. Appearance similar to the adult shrimp, adapted to the benthic way of life.

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