Peppermint Shrimp - Lysmata wurdemanni/rathbunae
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Peppermint Shrimp (Lysmata wurdemanni and Lysmata rathbunae) are active parasite cleaners as well as scavengers of meaty foods. They are nearly transparent with red or pink vein-like patterns on their body. These shrimp are well-known and popular for controlling the nuisance anemone known as Aiptasia. These shrimp will typically hunt out and eat these anemones and can help in keeping their populations under control.
Although Lysmata wurdemanni is the most common Peppermint Shrimp found in the Caribbean, Lysmata rathbunae is an almost-identical species that is sometimes collected and sold as or with L. wurdemanni. Both have essentially the same requirements and behavior and can be kept together in groups.
"Cleaner" shrimp get their name from their habit of picking external parasites, dead scales and other irritants off of the surface of other fish. Some fish will actively seek out a cleaner shrimp to clean them while others can become irritates or stressed by the shrimp's "good intentions". Cleaner shrimp will also accept other foods like flakes, pellets, algae, and frozen meaty foods as well as whatever they scavenge from their tank (or tankmates).
Shrimp molt their hard outer skeleton to grow and it is not unusual to find an empty molt in an aquarium with shrimp. Shrimp also can molt under environmental stress such as water changes, rapid changes in conditions or during shipping. Always acclimate shrimp slowly to avoid sudden changes in their environment.
Crustaceans like shrimp need well-balanced minerals in their environment to form their shells, particularly iodine and calcium and low nitrate levels. Regular water changes with a quality salt mix are generally enough to replenish any minerals lost to normal environmental sources in the aquarium but supplements can be added to heavily stocked aquariums.
|Common Name||Peppermint Shrimp|
|Scientific Name||Lysmata wurdemanni/rathbunae|
|Invert Safe||Yes, with caution|
|Max Size (in inches)||3|
|Min Tank Size (in gallons)||20|
|Specific Gravity Range||1.022-1.026|
Ratings & Reviews
Good looking and healthy
Purchased two for a 10G nano invert tank. I recently inherited some live rock/coral frags from a friend, and unfortunately the Aiptasia that came with it. The two shrimp eliminated all 25+ anemone in 48 hours. Now they hang out in secluded areas, but come out to chase the foods I place in the tank for them. Great price and just what I was hoping for.