March 23

Sarah Robertson

Can You Keep Betta With Shrimp?

Betta fish are aggressive tropical fish that are extremely territorial. They're recognized for their vibrant colors and spectacular long-flowing fins that come in varieties of shapes and sizes. Because of their aggressive personalities, bettas are known as Siamese fighting fish.

They are notorious for fiercely battling with other fish over territory and dominance. But can you keep Betta with shrimp? Yes, Bettas can be kept with shrimp. Shrimps are a very peaceful species and will not bother or intimidate the betta.

There are a few things you need to know about keeping Bettas and shrimp together before you make the decision to add shrimp to your Betta tank. In this article, we will discuss the compatibility of Bettas and shrimp, how to set up a tank for both species, and what you need to do to ensure a successful aquarium.

Can Bettas and Shrimp Share the Same Tank?

Bettas are a solitary fish that should not be kept with other species.  They have been observed to engage in territorial and dominance disputes. However, If you keep one betta fish alone for a long time, it will become bored and stressed.

There are some species that work well with betta and can share the same habitat with them without getting hurt. Shrimps are one such kind. Shrimp are peaceful creatures that can live in the same aquarium as bettas. They are natural predators for mosquito larvae.

They are also well known as scavengers and will eat up leftover food in the tank making your betta tank healthier and clean as well as improving the water quality. The only danger is that bettas may eat the shrimp, but this will depend on their mood and the size of the shrimp relative to their mouth, so some bettas can be kept in a community tank with shrimp as good tank mates.

Shrimp Species That Make Good Tankmates for Betta Fish

There are several kinds of shrimp species that make good tankmates for betta fish. If you want to keep multiple bettas with shrimps in the same aquarium, we recommend at least a 20-gallon tank.

There are many species of shrimp that can do well with betta, but amano shrimp, Ghost Shrimp, cherry Shrimp and Bumblebee Shrimp are the most popular ones. Each has their own unique color and personality, so choose the one you like best.

Amano Shrimp

1.Amano Shrimp

Amano shrimp are large in size and are normally kept in larger tanks. They're omnivores that will eat just about anything you feed them, including betta fish food. Amanos are not particular with their habitat, either. They can live in both freshwater and saltwater tanks of different pH levels.

Amanos are perfect tankmates for betta fish, because they are very peaceful. They won't bother your bettas with their large size and can live in the same tank without any problem. The common names for this freshwater crustacean include Yamato shrimp, Japanese shrimp, and algae shrimps.

Origin:

Amano shrimp are natives of Japan and Taiwan.

Size:

A full-grown Amano Shrimp size can be upwards of two inches in length but is usually closer to 1.5.

Lifespan:

They can live 2 to 3 years on average.

Water parameters for Amano shrimp:

65-85° F

GH: 

5-15

kH:

1-10

pH: 

6.5 – 8.0

Ghost Shrimp

2.Ghost Shrimp

Keeping ghost shrimp and bettas together is a fantastic way for a true hobbyist to get started in the world of aquarium keeping. Bettas are low-maintenance pets, so it's likely that they'll get along well with your ghost shrimp if you keep everyone adequately fed. Ghost Shrimp are very detectable because they have clear bodies and long white antennae.

Origin:

They are native to North America.

Size:

The ghost shrimp is a tiny species of shrimp that reaches a maximum length of 1.5-3 inches.

Lifespan:

They don't have a very long lifespan. They can live up to 1 year.

Water parameters for Ghost Shrimp:

65-85° F

GH: 

5-15

kH:

1-10

pH: 

6.5 – 8.0

Cherry Shrimp

3. Cherry Shrimp

This freshwater bottom feeder is easy to care for and does not grow more than 1 inch long. Despite their tiny size, they are active throughout the day but can escape through small spaces if your aquarium cover is not tight. So, be careful when adding decorations to your aquarium.

They need a place to hide and will usually use driftwood, rocks, or other decorations. They can be kept in a community tank with other species of fish. They are not picky eaters and will readily accept most foods, including flake food, frozen food, freeze-dried food, and algae wafers.

Origin:

Cherry Shrimp are found mainly in Japan but can also be found in Taiwan and the China.

Size:

The maximum length Cherry Shrimp can achieve is about 1.5 inches long. Female cherry shrimp are usually much larger than the males.

Lifespan:

They have a lifespan of around 2 years if properly cared for.

Water parameters for Cherry shrimp:

68-78° F

GH: 

4-15

kH:

4-8

pH: 

7.0 – 8.5

Bumblebee Shrimp

4. Bumblebee Shrimp 

The striped bumblebee shrimp, also called the Gnathophyllum americanum, is a species of shrimp that may be found in tropical lagoons, bays, and coral reefs. They have a blue sheen, similar to a brightly colored bumblebee.

They are docile and retiring, so they hide in caves or other concealments while growing and molting. They are shrimp, so they need a lot of calcium in the water for their shells. The bumblebee shrimp is non-aggressive and can be housed with bettas. Even though they are small, they are very active and can be quite entertaining.

Origin:

The Bumble Bee Shrimp, also known as the Striped Harlequin Shrimp, is found in a variety of habitats throughout the Indo-Pacific.

Size:

They are very small shrimp, reaching a maximum length of 1 inch long (including the tail.)

Lifespan:

They can live up to 2 years if properly cared for.

Water parameters for Bumblebee shrimp:

68-77° F

GH: 

4-15

kH:

4-8

pH: 

6.5-7.2

How to Keep betta with shrimp

The most important thing to consider is the betta's temperament and environment. Keep in mind that they need a fish tank with lots of hiding places and clean water so you will need a larger size tank at least 20 gallons for them both if they are going to be together.

You need to slowly introduce your betta and shrimp to each other. Put the shrimp in first and wait for a day or two before adding the betta. If everything goes well, you can then complete your set up with live plants and small rocks to provide more hiding places for both fish.

Bettas are aggressive fish so keep an eye out for any fighting signs. If you see a betta chasing a shrimp too much, move the shrimp to another tank or else it may eventually die from stress or injury.

All in all, if properly taken care of and given the right kind of environment, both bettas and shrimps can coexist together in one tank with the right set up.

Will Bettas Eat Shrimp if Housed Together?

The good news is that, in most situations, bettas and shrimp can coexist peacefully if there is plenty of space. It's always worthwhile to keep in mind, though, that their temperaments are different.

It is critical to ensure that the tank is appropriate for both bettas and shrimp, as well as that they are fed on time. Bettas are known for their fighting spirit and can get aggressive with other fish, especially if there is not enough space in the betta aquarium.

In general, bettas are not aggressive towards aquatic invertebrates. Bettas may attack fish that resemble them, but not invertebrates such as shrimps as long as there is no threat. Many people successfully keep shrimp and bettas together in the same tank without any issue.

However, it is always a good idea for the fish owner to observe their betta's actions and behavior.  If you notice that your betta is acting aggressive, the shrimp could become the next target. Also, the owner must ensure that baby shrimps are not placed in the tank with the betta since they may be eaten by aggressive betta.

How Do I Stop My Betta From Eating Shrimp

How Do I Stop My Betta From Eating Shrimp?

This is a common problem among many betta owners. Bettas are known as aggressive aquarium fish and can be quite territorial at times. But most of the times they work well with shrimps. However, there are certain exceptions to this.

If you want to try and prevent your betta from eating shrimp, then the best way to avoid this is to pick a betta that is born in the same fish tank or that you have raised with other shrimps. Always remember to add a lot of plants and hiding places in the betta aquarium.

The tank must be big enough for your betta to swim around freely. This will allow the betta to feel comfortable enough in its territory and it will not be likely to attack other animals. Make sure to feed your betta properly and on time. This will ensure that the betta's metabolism is going smoothly without any problems. 

How to Set Up Your Tank for Both Species

If you want to keep shrimps and bettas together, it's important to note that there are some particular setups which can be favorable. These are the following:

Aquariums with plenty of hiding spots are great for bettas since they enjoy their privacy. This is where the shrimps will feel safe as well. On one hand, shrimps also need a lot of places to hide in case there's an emergency situation or threat.

If you want a community-type tank, you should opt for a planted tank with smooth rocks. A betta in a well-planted tank can be moderately aggressive at times since they feel secure and less bothered by other fish. Also make sure that the plants are not poisonous to shrimp.

Ideal Tank Conditions for Both Species

When it comes to tank conditions, both species do best when there are enough hiding places for them to feel safe. For bettas, the ideal fish tank condition is somewhere between 70-78° F with a pH level of at least 7.0 or higher. Bettas prefer their water clean and well oxygenated so make sure to maintain clean and clear water at all times.

When it comes to shrimps, the ideal water temperature is 70-78° F and a pH level of 7.5 or higher with an alkalinity between 5-12dKH and a magnesium level of 1250 ppm or less. Shrimps' shells need calcium in the water to stay healthy.

If the calcium level in the water is too low, then you need to provide it by using a calcium additive. So, to keep them both together, provide a tank with plenty of hiding spots, clean water with enough calcium for the shrimp, and a pH level of 7.5 or higher.

Minimum Tank Size for Betta and Shrimp

It's important to note that bettas and shrimps both grow quite large. A 10-gallon tank is the smallest recommended size for a betta, which means you can only house one betta in this tank. You need at least 20 gallons to successfully keep bettas and shrimps together.

What Do Shrimps Eat?

Bettas are carnivores and they prefer a diet of live or frozen brine shrimp, bloodworms, mosquito larvae, tubifex worms or other meaty foods. The usual betta pellets will not suffice. You need to feed them a great variety of other foods such as worms and insects for them to be healthy.

Shrimp, on the other hand, can be fed both live and prepared food. They love algae wafers but they will eat most prepared shrimp or fish food. Some people like to give their shrimps nori (dried seaweed) as well.

Shrimps also need a lot of calcium for their shells so feeding them with cuttlebone is a good idea. Foods like spinach and kale contain a lot of calcium so you can add them to your bettas' diet as well.

Summing Up

Bettas are usually fine with any peaceful fish and can share the aquarium with shrimp. There are some exceptions to this rule. If you want to keep both of them together then make sure that the betta is not aggressive towards shrimp. A lot of people have had successful results when it comes to housing shrimps and bettas together.

They are both compatible, however it is important to note that you must set up your tank in favor of the betta. This means that you need to make sure they have plenty of hiding spaces, lots of plants and their water needs to be clean for them to feel comfortable. You should also make sure that the bettas are fed on time as they can become aggressive if they do not eat within a reasonable amount of time.

Before deciding whether or not to keep two fish together, the pet owner should also examine both fish's behavior. Shrimps are generally peaceful so they won't create any problems. By taking these factors into consideration, you should be able to achieve a healthy tank with both bettas and shrimp.

Sarah Robertson


I am a passionate blogger who also happens to be a fish keeping enthusiast. Writing about my hobby is something that I absolutely love to do, and it's no secret that my chosen topic is always centered around fish keeping.

Sarah Robertson

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