Red Cherry Shrimp Care Guide: Diet, Lifespan, Size

Red Cherry Shrimp are great freshwater shrimp that add a bit of life to any aquarium. These shrimp are bright red and contrast well against the greenery of a planted tank. They are one of the most popular shrimp for freshwater aquariums. Cherry Shrimp are easy to care for, easy to feed, and easy to breed. Here’s everything you need to know about raising Red Cherry Shrimp.

Red Cherry Shrimp Video

Red Cherry Shrimp Pictures

NameRed Cherry shrimp
Scientific NameNeocaridina davidi
Tank Size20 gallons
Size~1 – 1,2 inches
Optimal Temperature~72°F – 78°F
Optimal PH7.0 – 7.8 (6.0 – 8.0)
Optimal GH6 – 8 (4 – 14)
Optimal KH2 – 4 (1 – 8)
Optimal TDS150 – 200 (80-400)
NitrateLess than 20 ppm
DietAlgae eater/omnivore
Lifespan1-2 years
ColorRed (color grading)
Red Cherry Shrimp Overview

Red Cherry Shrimp Size & Lifespan

Red Cherry Shrimp grow to about 1.6 inches in length. The average lifespan of a healthy and well-cared-for Cherry Shrimp is 1 to 2 years.


There is a graded system that defines a Cherry Shrimp’s color. It ranges from the brightest red to pale shades with red speckles. These are the different Cherry Shrimp types by color:

Types of Cherry Shrimp By Color

  • Cherry Shrimp: Regular cherry shrimp are the lowest grade of Neocaridina heteropoda They tend to be pale in color with red spots.
  • Sakura Cherry Shrimp: These are redder in color but still have clear spots on their body.
  • Fire Red Shrimp: These shrimp are completely red.
  • Painted Fire Red Shrimp: The most expensive and highest grade of Neocaridina heteropoda. They have a solid deep red color with no pale spots. They also have red limbs.

Tank Size

Thanks to their small size, Red Cherry Shrimp can live in a variety of fish tank sizes. Small tanks between 8-12 gallons are suitable for keeping a small colony. But, a 20-gallon tank will allow for more shrimp, more activity, and easier management.

Water Parameters

Caring for Cherry Shrimp is easy so long as you maintain ideal water conditions. These are tropical freshwater shrimp so keep the following in mind:

  • Water Temperature: 72 – 78 Degrees Fahrenheit is ideal.
  • Aquarium pH: 7.0 – 7.8 is acceptable.
  • Aquarium Lighting:  Normal fish tank lighting.

It’s essential to keep the water quality stable, so use a heater if you need to. Use testing kits to keep an eye on ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates levels. Never use medications or anything that contains copper as it is fatal to aquarium shrimp.

Diet & Feeding

Red Cherry Shrimp eat fish flakes, shrimp pellets, and algae wafers. They like lots of live aquarium plants, which also provide edible plant matter. They are also algae eaters and will feed on soft green or brown algae. Despite this, Cherry Shrimp can’t control algae as well as other shrimp like the Amano Shrimp. And, you should always take care of your aquarium to avoid algae overgrowth.

Compatible Tank Mates

Red Cherry Shrimp are peaceful and non-aggressive. Tank mates must also be non-aggressive. The safest route is to keep Red Cherry Shrimp in groups with Red Cherry Shrimp. Nonetheless, the can share a tank with the following peaceful fish and invertebrates:


Red Cherry Shrimp can also do well with snails such as:



Things To Consider


Do not overstock the aquarium and add lots of aquarium plants. Shrimps like to explore and live plants give them lots of areas to do so. They also like to hide between plants and other decorations in the tank. Use a sponge filter because shrimp like to scavenge for food trapped on the sponge. Also, add an air stone to help keep the water oxygenated and flowing.


Cherry Shrimp are one of the easiest shrimp species to breed. Shrimp can mate when they are around 4-6 months of age. To encourage breeding, raise the water temperature to 82° F. Once mating is successful, the female shrimp carry the eggs under their tails. The eggs take about 30 days to hatch.

Baby Shrimp depend on micro-organisms to feed on. So, it’s best to keep them in a matured-tank. Plants that have thick growth like Anacharis, Cabomba, and Water Sprite are perfect as they provide hiding places and food for baby Cherry Shrimp.