How Many Ghost Shrimp Per Gallon?

Pregnant Ghost Shrimp

Ghost shrimps are exciting invertebrates, also known as glass shrimps. They are very small and can crazily reproduce with negligible waste. Keeping them in your tank is an amazing and beautiful addition to your aquarium community.

Ghost shrimps are scavengers that perform excellent jobs in cleaning the aquarium. However, knowing their number to keep in the tank is essential.

How Many Ghost Shrimp Per Gallon?

The most typical method fish keepers use for ghost shrimp is to keep 4 to 5 per gallon. However, the range could be anywhere from 3 and 10, depending on the other fish in the tank, the decorations, the plants, and the equipment.

To answer the question, ‘How many ghost shrimp per gallon?’ There are necessary factors to take note of. Let’s discuss these essential factors:

1. Number Of Residents In The Tank

Ghost shrimps have very little ecological imprint and biomass. However, the appropriate quantity of ghost shrimps can be impacted by the presence of other aquatic animals in the tank. You can start with around 4–6 shrimps in a community tank.

Ghost shrimps are small and have a maximum size of only 2 inches. They occupy a lot less space within the tank. However, because of their small size, most fish species find their delicious food.

Adding about ten shrimps to a tank with other fish is advisable because the fish will eat most of the shrimps. Also, add to the tank several live plants or decorations like tiny caves and castles where only the size of shrimps can fit.

2. Number Of Plants In The Tank

You can put ten ghost shrimps in a tank with many live plants. It shouldn’t be more than 20 to 25 if you want to add more. The number of shrimps per gallon depends on factors like the tank’s population, its purpose, etc., if plants are sparser.

While eating plants, ghost shrimp favour the rotting parts more. Your plants aren’t seriously threatened by their little mouths.

You can add floatable plants like Amazon frogbit and water lettuce if you host ghost shrimp. These plants are simple to maintain and great at removing ammonia from the water.

Although it might seem improbable, even the smallest actions can go a long way toward maintaining a tank’s cleanliness and the health of its water parameters.

3. State Of Filtration

Ghost shrimp are meticulous aquarium cleaners. Ironically yet, they require a tank that is always spotlessly clean. Ghost shrimp are quite sensitive to their surroundings and the water’s conditions. Your tank’s capacity to hold more shrimp automatically rises if you have a good filtering system.

Ghost shrimps generate a very small amount of bio-load. Additionally, they eat algae, decomposing matter, and occasionally even fish faeces. So ghost shrimp contribute to a tank’s cleanliness and health in several ways.

They are, nevertheless, quite vulnerable to unfavourable water conditions. For instance, ghost shrimp moult and shed their old exoskeletons every few weeks. They will also take a sizable amount of water from the tank to create a new shell. Therefore, the water must always be pure and healthy; ideally, it should have a slightly higher calcium and protein content.

In addition to assisting in moulting, effective filtration benefits ghost shrimp fertility, immunity, and infection prevention. You must ensure that using a filter with an intake screen is one crucial element. Ghost shrimps scale the filter to eat the biofilm and algae that have developed on the top. They, therefore, stand a good chance of being drawn in and stuck inside the filter.

4. Number Of Hiding Places

Although ghost shrimps appear unassuming, they are quite territorial animals. There will probably be some antagonism in the tank. Therefore, provide some areas for ghost shrimps to hide when threatened. When moulting, they also significantly favour hiding. Increase the number of hiding places for ghost shrimps and reduce the number of ghost shrimps.

 Decorations, plants, and driftwood will require much space in the tank. Try to consider that, as your shrimps need to have enough space to hide. 

What Is The Best Recommendation For A Ghost Shrimp Tank?

Ghost Shrimp Care Guide

Some blogs and forums recommend a 5-gallon tank for beginners who want to keep ghost shrimps. Care for small tanks may be easier, but they can be more temperamental than the big ones. A 10-gallon will be fine.

Given the temperate water conditions, it will be challenging for a beginner to raise a group of ghost shrimp in a tiny aquarium. Additionally, if a successful colony is established, the shrimp in the tank quickly increases. Therefore, even if the tank’s population grows, if you get a 10-gallon tank, you won’t need to replace it anytime soon.

They are peaceful creatures and make great additions to a community tank. If you are considering setting up a ghost shrimp tank, there are several things you need to know to ensure the best living conditions for your new pets.

1. Tank Size

Ghost shrimp are relatively small, growing up to two inches in length. However, they are active creatures and need plenty of space to swim around.

A good rule of thumb is to provide at least one gallon of water per shrimp. This means a 10-gallon tank would suit up to 10 ghost shrimp.

2. Water Quality

Ghost shrimp are sensitive to changes in water conditions and require clean, well-oxygenated water to thrive. Make sure to cycle your tank before adding shrimp to ensure that beneficial bacteria have established and are converting harmful toxins into less harmful substances.

A filter will help to maintain water quality, and regular water changes will also help to keep the water clean.

3. Substrate

Ghost shrimp like to burrow in the substrate, so a fine-grain substrate such as sand or gravel is recommended. Avoid coarse substrates, as they can damage the shrimp’s delicate exoskeleton.

4. Decorations

Ghost shrimp like to hide, providing plenty of hiding spots in the tank. You can create hiding places using live or artificial plants, driftwood, and rocks. Avoid sharp decorations that could harm the shrimp.

5. Lighting

Ghost shrimp are not particularly sensitive to lighting but require a regular day-night cycle. Aim for 8-10 hours of light per day, followed by 8-10 hours of darkness.

6. Tank Mates

Ghost shrimp are peaceful creatures and can coexist with many other fish species and invertebrates. However, avoid keeping them with large, aggressive fish that could eat or harm the shrimp. Also, be cautious when keeping them with other shrimp species, as they may interbreed.

7. Feeding

Ghost shrimp are omnivorous and eat various foods, including algae, plant matter, and small organisms such as brine shrimp and bloodworms. They are scavengers and will also eat any leftover food in the tank. Feed them a small amount of food twice daily, being careful not to overfeed.

How To Control The Ghost Shrimps Population In The Tank

When it comes to breeding rates, ghost shrimps may compete with guppies. Utilizing them as live food, selling them, removing pregnant ghost shrimp from the tank, or introducing an invasive species are all strategies for reducing their population.

They can reproduce wildly in a tank that is secure and healthy. So, if your tank is exploding exactly as you intended, it’s good news. If not, let’s consider the fixes.

1. Shift Them To A Bigger Tank

You can transfer your ghost shrimps to a bigger tank if you want a thriving colony. For a start, 10 gallons will be okay but try to invest in a bigger tank as your shrimps multiply. 

Ghost shrimps are territorial creatures; therefore, a shortage of space may lead to uninvited violence. The water in the tank will get contaminated quickly, and you know the effects.

2. Separate pregnant shrimp

A practical population management method is removing pregnant ghost shrimps from the aquarium. You can move it to a different aquarium or feed it to other fish as a snack. Ghost shrimps are transparent; thus, it is simple to tell if they are pregnant.

The swollen stomach is visible, and dozens of small eggs inside the body may be seen when held up to the light.

3. Sell Them

Some people buy ghost shrimps to start a colony, and others buy them as feeders. You can make cool money by selling out your ghost shrimps, but make sure to have plans to care when shipping live shrimps properly. And you can decide to market them on e-commerce sites.

4. Sell Your Ghost Shrimps To Local Pet Stores

Due to their employment as feeder shrimps and algae cleaners, ghost shrimps are virtually always one of the most popular animals in pet stores.

As a result, you can get in touch with your neighborhood pet shop and inquire about selling them some of your ghost shrimp. Usually, the response is “yes” inside the body.

5. Give Them As A Gift

Due to their employment as feeder shrimps and algae cleaners, ghost shrimps are virtually always one of the most popular animals in pet stores.

As a result, you can get in touch with your neighborhood pet shop and inquire about selling them some of your ghost shrimp. Usually, the response is “yes” inside the body.

What Can Happen If You Keep Too Many Ghost Shrimps In A Tank?

Keeping too many numbers of ghost shrimps in a tank can/will result in the following common problem:

  • Excess ammonia is unhealthy for ghost shrimps. When you keep more than the recommended number of ghost shrimps in a tank, ammonia will be built up more than expected. This can be toxic, and it will result in the death of shrimp.
  • Ghost shrimps appreciate hiding places. More ghost shrimps in a tank will result in less space. Therefore, ghost shrimps become territorial and start attacking themselves will, result to 


Ghost shrimps are interesting pets to care for easily. However, their needs are quite sensitive and specific, probably because of the hiding places or filtration system.

Note that several factors determine the number of ghost shrimps per gallon. However, for the safety of your ghost shrimps, the correct number is per shrimp per gallon.

Written by Justin Michaels