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How To Setup A No Filter Shrimp Tank!

The popularity of building out shrimp tanks is skyrocketing right now with more and more people looking to make everything from 1 gallon shrimp tanks all the way up to huge double-digit shrimp aquariums.

With purple cherry shrimp and blue amano shrimp getting lots of attention on social media right now due to being so rare, we only expect more and more people to get into keeping shrimp tanks in the future too, especially with people looking to breed shrimp.

We have noticed more and more people reaching out with various questions about keeping a no filter shrimp tank and wanted to publish our own article going over the subject due to seeing so many people reaching out about keeping no filter shrimp tanks.

Our hope is that we will be able to help people set up suitable no filter shrimp tanks and although there are a number of ways you are able to do it depending on what you want, we feel that the Walstad Method is the best.

Due to different people having different needs, we will be covering a number of different ways that you are able to set up a no filter shrimp tank though. We have added our table of contents blow making it easy to skip to specific sections of the article as quickly as possible.

This should make it as easy as possible for our readers to find the perfect setup for them and ensure that we are able to help as many of our readers are able to find something that works for their needs for their own no filter shrimp tank.

Can Shrimp Live In A Tank Without A Filter?

“Neocaridina heteropoda var. Sakura” by Joel Carnat is licensed under CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Shrimp can live in a tank without a filter with there usually being two main methods of setting the tank up.

The Walstad Method is the most popular method that relies on heavily planting the tank with live plants to oxygenate the water and the aerator method adds an aftermarket aerator to the tank to oxygenate the tank.

Both methods can work and both have their advantages but most people do tend to prefer to use the Walstad Method as it is the best true no filter shrimp tank method.

You do have to be careful with the plants that you use as they do have to have a high oxygen yield for the tank to work as shrimp will require their water to have oxygen in it to survive but we will cover the best live plants in the section below.

The advantage of the aerator method is that you are able to use a wide range of different tanks that don’t come with a pump or filter built-in and then use a aquarium aerator to filter the water and supply oxygen.

This removed the need to stick to some of the more popular tanks and opens up the tanks that you are able to use for your shrimp tank while also allowing you to use a wide range of different aerators to set the tank up in a range of different ways.

Do Highly Planted Shrimp Aquariums Work Instead Of A Filter?

The Walstad Method is by far the most popular method of keeping a no filter shrimp tank as the highly planted tank system based on the Walstad Method is an easy way to switch out a filter and make your tank all natural.

There are a huge range of different ways that you are able to set the tank up with a range of different tanks and aquascapes too allowing you to stay very beginner-friendly or go up to a high-end aquascape setup.

As the majority of our readers are usually beginners, we would highly recommend that you stick to plants that are usually easier to care for in your no filter shrimp tank.

These include Amazon Swordplant, Echinodorus major, Pygmy Chain Sword, Echinodorus, Dwarf Sag, and Dwarf Baby Tears with you being able to mix and match plants for some excellent setups.

Although it is a little pricey, the developer of the Walstad Method published the No products found. that goes into much more detail on how you are able to use the Walstad Method for your no filter shrimp tank.

If you do want to use more intermediate or experienced live plants in your shrimp tank then it is well worth checking out as it offers some excellent value.

How To Setup A No Filter Shrimp Tank!

The most popular way to set up a no filter shrimp tank is to go with a heavily planted aquarium where the live plants in the tank will oxygenate the water for you and remove the requirement of a filter.

You don’t even have to let your live plants grow in fully before adding a small amount of shrimp to the tanks either allowing you to get started quickly.

We would highly recommend that you stick to the live plant suggestions in the section above if you are new to keeping a shrimp tank as they are the easiest live plants that are suitable for a no filter tank for shrimp.

You are able to come up with a huge range of different setups for your live plants with the restrictions only really being limited by your imagination. Many people do stick to very basic tank setups though due to they are so easy to look after while requiring minimal maintenance too.

If you do choose to go with the aquarium aerator method then you tend to have a much easier time though as there is no need to look after or plan out live plants in your aquarium.

Most people who would consider using an aerator will usually use a tank that comes with a built-in filter instead of adding an aftermarket aerator as the built-in filters are usually hidden better in the tank.


That brings our article going over no filter shrimp tanks to an end. Although they are more difficult than a tank with a built-in filter, they are still usually easier than the majority of people initially think. We would highly recommend that you try the Walstad Method if you are set on not using a filter in your shrimp tank as it has been proven to work time and time again for shrimp tanks.