Are Ghost Shrimp Aggressive? The Correct Answer Can Surprise You!

The bottom dwellers easily charm any aquarist thanks to their ghostly appearance. They look like tiny, lovely Caspers with transparent, sleek bodies.

Though shy and unassuming, these cleaners are also known for being hostile. With that in mind, you might wonder, “Are ghost shrimp aggressive?

Are Ghost Shrimp Aggressive?     

ghost shrimp on moss

Ghost shrimps are not an aggressive shrimp species

Although ghost shrimps are not an aggressive shrimp species, they can be aggressive if food becomes scarce or the habitat conditions are not met.

Ghost shrimps are behind fish in the food cycle, so they are rarely aggressive toward fish. But if these shrimps come across something significantly smaller than the shrimp, the shrimp will likely bully and even eat this fish.

While browsing the aquatic forums, I saw many aquarists reporting their shrimp ghost shrimps devouring fish like guppy and tetra. But it happens rarely.

These shrimps typically only go for fish if it is severely ill or already dead. This species favors scavenging on the dead individual.

What do Ghost Shrimps Eat?

ghost shrimp with eggs

Ghost Shrimps are bottom dwellers

It is okay to feed your ghost shrimps with fish flakes, algae wafers, plants, daphnia, blood worms, larvae, and insects.

Shrimps are typically high in fat and oil, so they feature an excellent threshold for digesting fatty food.

In addition, a high-protein diet is essential in their early life stages. A calcium-rich diet is also a must-have for their shell growth and molting.

Ensure you add enough calcium to your ghost shrimps, as casualties during molting are commonplace.

Many aquarists use eggshells to fortify calcium, but it seems to make the tank water quite cloudy.

You can try using cuttlebones that dissolve slowly and do not mess up with the pH level or your tank.

Many people don’t focus on feeding their ghost shrimps as they believe that the tank’s waste can suffice their diet.

Like other species, starving can cause aggression in your ghost shrimps.

What Are the Best Water Conditions for Ghost Shrimps?

Hardness Hard
pH Level From 6 to 8
Nitrate Level 20ppm
Water Temperature From 65 to 85°F (From 18 to 29°C)
Water Flow Rate Slow

You can add tannins as they give antibacterial properties to these shrimp ghosts. It is a good thing as they are more vulnerable when molting.

In addition, these shrimps are not good at being tolerant of copper. Hence, if you use tap water, run it for a couple of minutes first. Thanks to that, the water will have fewer corrosion properties.

We recommend using aquariums that allow you to eliminate copper and any other heavy contaminants.

What Are the Best Tank Setups for Ghost Shrimps?

Tank Size (Ideal) Ten gallons
Minimum Tank Size Five gallons
Filter Type Sponge filter with nitrate and nitrite absorbing pads
Tank Shape Long and shallow
Aeration Many air stones on low settings.

For fish, it is unnecessary to worry about nitrates as they are less toxic than ammonia. Regarding ghost shrimps and other shrimps, you must perform water tests weekly to ensure the nitrate levels in your aquarium are below 20 ppm.

Also, avoid adding any live plants and decorations with rough protrusions or edges. Instead, it is alright to choose driftwood and rounded rocks.

We use some aquatic plants, such as peacock moss and java moss, to form tiny caves for our ghost shrimps. These creatures prefer to hide in the aquarium.


Who Are the Best Ghost Shrimp Tank Mates?

Tank Mates To Avoid Ideal Tank Mates
Cichlids Dwarf suckers
Any fish that are aggressive, such as Mollies,  Barbs, Betta, Serpea Tetra. Other shrimp species
Angelfish Small Tetras
Discus Small rasboras
Fish with a large mouth to gulp the shrimp in one single instance Snails

Tips to save your ghost shrimps from getting killed:

  • Keeping them in a separate tank is best.
  • Avoid keeping them with aggressive fish.
  • Make sure you have enough hiding places in your tank.
  • Keep them with small and friendly tank mates.

Are Ghost Shrimp Aggressive Towards Cherry Shrimp?

Yes. Ghost shrimps usually grow bigger and can be hostile toward cherry shrimps. Ghost shrimps typically target smaller shrimp shrimps.

If they have eaten a cherry shrimp, its belly will get pink or red.

Do Ghost Shrimps Kill Other Species?

These shrimps can attack other species but never kill them.

Do Ghost Shrimps Kill Each Other?

These shrimps never kill each other, but there are several cases where they attack each other. However, this rarely happens.

Why Ghost Shrimps Attack Each Other

Although ghost shrimps attack each other is rare, it can happen for the following reasons:

  • These shrimps sometimes get territorial if your aquarium is too small or crowded, making them attack each other.
  • If the environment is unsuitable, these shrimps might get sick and start to feel uncomfortable. It can sometimes make them aggressive and attack each other.
  • Ghost shrimps sometimes attack each other while eating to fight for food but will not fight to the death. So ensure to provide enough food for them to minimize this situation.
  • Stress could be one of the reasons for attacking each other in ghost shrimps.

Generally, ghost shrimps aren’t aggressive. They do not attack or fight each other if everything is suitable for them.

Whisker Shrimp and Ghost Shrimp: What’s the Difference?

The main difference between whisker shrimp and ghost shrimp is the size.

The latter can reach 1.5 inches, while the former can grow up to 2 inches. These shrimp have transparent bodies, but whisker shrimps feature noticeably longer claws.

In terms of personality, ghost shrimps are docile creatures unless they are pressed, while whisker shrimps feature a natural predatory instinct.

Wrapping It Up

Are ghost shrimp aggressive? No, these shrimps are naturally unassuming and docile creatures and prefer to lurk around at your tank’s bottom. They are not aggressive unless they are forced.

Thus, you have reached the end of the article. Hopefully, the useful information provided in the article will help you answer your concerns.

Thank you for your interest in the article!