PH Range: 6.5 – 8
Temperature Range:75 – 80 F (22 – 25 C)
Hardness Range: 8-12 dKH
Life Span: 1.5 -2.5 years
Habitat: Fully Aquatic
The origin of this shrimp is still under debate with claims to Taiwan and Germany among other locations. Because Cherry Shrimp are so popular, widely spread and were used to selectively breed the Fire Cherry Shrimp, it is quite possible this morph was developed simultaneously in different areas, both by the small hobbyist and the large farm. There are also two schools of thought on the ancestors of this selectively bred shrimp. Some believe that it was strictly from the Cherry Red while others think some crossbreeding from another species has been involved. This is another of the selectively breed morphs that has several grades to distinguish the colors and patterns available to hobbyists. There are the Sakura, Fire, Taiwan Fire and Painted Red Shrimp. With Sakura Red there is a marked difference between the male and female in coloration. Females are nearly completely red with the possibility of patches that are translucent near their underbelly. There may also be a saddle visible across the back. Occasionally carapace cracking is visible. Generally males look similar to cherry shrimp males; almost colorless. With the Fire Cherry Shrimp the legs and body are red and the shrimp will lack the presence of carapace cracking. Sometimes there is leg spotting but it is only slight and usually red in color. Their carapace may have slight translucence allowing the saddle to be visible under good light. Coloration is quite uniform with all parts of the shrimp that are visible being covered in red. Also, they have a higher rate of offspring that are of a similar grade (80-90%) than normal Fire Reds.
With the Painted morph you will see a darker red still and its present in both males and females. Rarely is a saddle visible with even the best of light. Males are similar in appearance to high grade Sakuras and can be similar to females.
As with all shrimp, the Fire Cherry Shrimp is extremely sensitive to nitrites, ammonia and metals in their water. You will need to perform regular water changes using water that is free of copper and other metals. These shrimp also like a tank that has hiding places as well as plenty of plants to climb and graze from. Unless they have some sort of props they will be very unhappy. Their nature is to climb and to be successful in keeping and breeding them, get something they can climb in the tank. Fire Cherry Shrimp adjust best with a tank that’s in the mid-seventies, thoroughly cycled and has a good filtration system. These shrimp love algae. That said they will also eat anything that falls into the tank. Most sinking pellets, algae wafers, or shrimp pellets work well. These are small shrimp that are great scavengers. In a well planted tank they can go several days or longer on algae growth and food in the tank keeping your aquarium clean. Because they are tiny, it is easy to feed them too much. Only feed small amounts and watch that they can eat it within a couple of hours. Fire Cherry Shrimp will interbreed with a number of other shrimp. You may want to keep them apart if you want to preserve the breeding efforts of the Fire Cherry Shrimp. Males are a little smaller than the females. You can also distinguish a female from a male by her saddle. This is an area in her back where undeveloped eggs are stored. Females can mate once they have molted. Leave the discarded shells in the tank as the shrimp will eat them for calcium and other minerals. The fertilized eggs carried by the female are termed “berries” by some. Once the fertilized eggs have fully matured, the hatchlings will emerge. This is a prolific type and with water parameters met can yield many babies. These shrimp are very docile and arehappy-go-lucky little shrimp. The Fire Cherry Shrimp lives well with Otocinclus, mini rasboras and some other tiny fish. They won’t eat their babies or each other. When you first get them, they may blanch a little but within 24 – 48 hours they will have their bright red color back again. They are active all day long, nibbling on algae and keeping your tank clean. Ledges and areas for climbing will leave you with a scene of beautiful shrimp grazing. Keep all copper products or copper-containing products away from these shrimp. They are very sensitive to the detrimental effects of this mineral. Though their care is similar to the Cherry Shrimp it’s important to remember they are more selectively bred, therefore more sensitive from their smaller gene pool.