How to Breed Ghost Shrimp

Ghost shrimps are also known as glass shrimps, and these freshwater shrimps are very easy to maintain and breed. They are very small and very active type of translucent shrimps. Another thing that makes them very popular is their cheap price. Many people are buying them to keep them as pets, and there are also many people that breed them in order to use them as feeders for bigger fish. Ghost shrimps are also great scavengers and are perfect for cleaning your aquarium of algae and debris. Another positive characteristic of ghost shrimp is that they are very tolerant to different conditions. That is another reason why are they considered to be the best shrimp for beginners.


Ghost shrimps can thrive in almost any environment you put them in. They are among the rare species that can survive and reproduce even in very small aquariums and fish bowls. Most of the ghost shrimp species never go over one inch in length so they do not produce virtually no waste. That means you can use any type of filter for your aquarium for breeding and growing these shrimps. However, when you go looking for aquarium filters remember that baby ghost shrimps are small larvae that swim around and can be easily sucked in by filters. Avoid buying canister filters or hang-on-back filters because these could kill them, so your best option is to get a sponge filter.

When it comes to ghost shrimp breeding, good thing to know is that breeding is done very easily. The only things you need to have are enough male and female ghost shrimp. The most difficult part of the breeding process is keeping the larvae ghost shrimps alive after they are born. This is because they have extremely tiny mouths and can eat only microscopic sizes of food. That is why many of the larvae ghost shrimps die of starvation. You can increase the chances of baby shrimp survival if you remove the pregnant female shrimp from the aquarium as soon as you notice her eggs. Due to the fact that ghost shrimps are translucent you can easily spot which shrimps are carrying their eggs. Female ghost shrimps will carry many small green eggs inside their stomach that will hatch into larvae after few weeks of carrying. As soon as you put a pregnant female ghost shrimp inside the tank, you need to find a solution for your larvae to survive. However, keeping them alive is very tough thing to do because they are very difficult to feed and many of them die as soon as they get born.

Things to Do for Ghost Shrimps to Breed

  • As mentioned, ghost shrimps breed very easily. Just make sure you put enough males and females inside the tank. Usually female ghost shrimps are double the size than male shrimps, and a good thing to do for successful breeding is to put twice as many female ghost shrimps than males.
  • The water temperature inside the aquarium should be around 25-26 °C ideally. Higher water temperatures simulate wetter and warmer periods of the year. Keep in mind that higher water temperature will boost the breeding activity of shrimps as it raises their metabolism.
  • Remember to put thick cover of plants inside your tank, because that will give your ghost shrimps sense of calmness and safety in the process of breeding. Also, if you raise the water hardness you will elevate the amount of minerals and calcium in the water which are essential for maturation of shrimp eggs.
  • A couple of weeks after breeding you will notice that female ghost shrimp are carrying dozens of eggs below their tails. They will constantly keep fanning the eggs in order to keep them healthy and oxygenated. At this point you need to make sure that there is an air filter inside the tank, but keep in mind that ghost shrimp fry are very tiny and very fragile.
  • In case if you notice that the female ghost shrimp is pregnant but does not produce any baby shrimps, then you need to check a few things. First, check out the calcium levels in the water. Either too high or too low levels of calcium can prevent ghost shrimp from properly developing. Next thing to check out is the water temperature. Make sure it is always around 25 °C because that is ideal temperature for encouraging birth. Last thing to check is whether there are artificial covers and enough plants inside the aquarium, because they relax the ghost shrimp before giving birth.
  • After ghost shrimp fry get born they need to fend for themselves. A good idea would be to place them into a smaller tank immediately after they are born, because if you keep them together with adult ghost shrimps they can get eaten by them.