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The Shrimp Farm, Aquariums  Dealers, Bloomington, IL



Breeding Amano Shrimp(Caridina Multidentata)

Amano Shrimp Breeding

Amano shrimp are one of the hardest shrimp to breed in the aquarium hobby. Many have longed to think it is impossible, but there are the who have been able to do so. There are 4 things to focus on while trying to breed Amano shrimp, inducing breeding, breeding/carrying of eggs, raising the young, and acclimation to freshwater. Two of these variables are easy to perform, while the other 2 will be a little difficult.

Assimilating Amano shrimp to breed requires a sexed pair of shrimp, stable water parameters, and a food source. Female Amano shrimp will be larger, averaging around 1.5"-2", and have brown, dashed lines along its body. Males will be a little smaller, averaging around 1"-1.5", and have dots along its body. Females can have a bright or dull green "saddle" which is where the eggs are developing in her ovaries. It is difficult to sex Amano shrimp at a young age. At roughly 3 to 4 months, it becomes more prominent.

Female Amano shrimp carrying eggs.
Berried Adult Female. Close up of the eggs, the black dots are the eyes of the babies.

Amano Shrimp For Sale


• Pair of sexed Amano shrimp
• Shrimp food
• Sea Salt Mix(Instant Ocean Sea Salt Mix is recommended; NOT table salt, pickling salt, aquarium salt, etc.)
• A light capable of growing saltwater algae
• A container to hold the saltwater and larvae
• 2 air pumps with accessories(airline tubing, check valve, control valve, air stone, etc.)
• A 1-gallon container for dechlorinated freshwater
• RODI or RO water
• Hydrometer or Refractometer
• Flashlight
• Pipette or eye dropper
• A syringe with a decently sized opening

Before Breeding:

Set up your saltwater jar, one of the air pumps with its accessories, and mix the saltwater mix. Try to aim for 30-35 PPT saltwater(1.022-1.026 Specific Gravity). Once you got the mix at that salinity, you can add the airstone and have it pump out a gentle stream of air. Position the light above the container and allow it to mature. Bugs may fly into it and die, creating Ammonia, which is a nutrient required by Algae to grow. The water will evaporate and the salinity will go up. Top-off the evaporation with RODI or RO water to maintain the salinity. After a while, the jar will be filled with diatoms and other sorts of algae.

Breeding Parameters:

Water parameters should be kept stable within the acceptable ranges. The pH should be between 6.5-8.0. The temperature should be consistent between 70°F-80°F. GH should be 5-15, while KH 1-10.

When breeding, food should be readily available. Algae in the tank can be an adequate food source. If there is not enough food, you can supplement with blanched vegetables and prepared fish foods.

How Amanos Breed:

Once Amano shrimp are sexually mature(4-5 months), the above-mentioned requirements are met, they'll breed. Breeding follows after a female molts. She will attempt to hide and release pheromones into the water column. Males will sense the pheromones and will find her and mate. Afterward, the female will carry the fertilized eggs in her pleopods/swimmerets till the eggs hatch. This is considered the easy part of breeding Amanos. They will readily breed if the female is ready.

Once they breed, the eggs will remain in her pleopods/swimmerets for 3-5 weeks developing. In the third week, you should prepare the 1-gallon container and fill it with your source of water. Set up the air pump and the accessories so there is a good amount of flow. If the female were to release all of the eggs before hatching, the flow from the air stone would keep the eggs well oxygenated and fungus-free. Allow the temperature to become room temp then transfer your berried female. Watch closely, as the eggs may hatch soon or take another 2 weeks.

Raising the Larvae:

This is going to be the difficult part, so be warned.

After the eggs hatch, the larvae have roughly 1 week to survive in freshwater. Turn off all surrounding light and shine a flashlight at one spot on the container. Since they are attracted to light, they are drawn to swim towards it. This makes it much easier to round them all up. Put them into a temporary container, like a betta cup. You may have to repeat this step multiple times, as not all of the eggs will hatch at the same rate. Once you have rounded up as many as you feel like, transfer them into the saltwater jar. Acclimation is not required. Watch closely as the larvae will float around and eat algae. They will do this till they metamorphize, which will take 2 to 3 months.

It is easy to tell once they have metamorphized. They will swim forward rapidly, mimicking what they would do in the wild, swimming from the ocean, upstream into brackish, then into freshwater for the rest of their lives.

Feeding the Larvae:

The larvae should feed on the algae grown on the container walls. Naturally grown diatoms and other algae are the best food sources for them.   Supplemental feedings are not necessary, as this can easily foul the water and kill all of the larvae. If you were to feed them, Spirulina powder is an acceptable food, just a small pinch.

Capturing and Acclimating the Larvae:

Warning: a little difficult

Catching them can be a little tricky, as they are quite fast. Attach a small piece of airline tubing, approximately 2"-3", to the syringe and stick it into the container. When the larvae stop swimming, quickly go near it and start pulling on the plunger. This may take several attempts, as they will try to evade the airline. Once you have it, squirt the larvae out of the tube and/or syringe into a cup. Make sure there is enough saltwater to cover the shrimp. Acclimating will take approximately 24-36 hours. You will take a long piece of airline tubing and attach an air stone to one end and a control valve to the other. Airstone end goes into the tank, it prevents any baby shrimp or preexisting shrimp from being sucked up. The control valve end goes into the cup. Start the siphon by sucking on it very slightly. Once you got the water flowing, slow it down to roughly 1 drop per second. It is recommended to check the cup every few hours, to ensure it does not overflow. After acclimating for 24-36 hours, slowly pour the cup into the tank. The diluted saltwater should not affect the water parameters drastically.

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