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How To Setup The Perfect Shrimp Jar Micro Tank!

More and more people are starting to add shrimp to their aquarium tanks with many people starting to keep dedicated shrimp tanks due to so many influencers in the aquarium keeping space showing how cheap and easy they are while looking amazing.

This has resulted in a large number of people reaching out in recent months asking various questions about how they are able to integrate shrimp keeping into their operation.

Due to a number of popular YouTubers within the fish keeping hobby starting to keep shrimp jars, we have seen a number of people reaching out with various questions about keeping shrimp in a jar recently.

Due to this, we decided that we wanted to publish our own guide on how to set up the perfect shrimp jar to help your shrimp thrive!

Can You Keep Shrimp In A Jar?

You can keep shrimp in a jar with minimal issues and a large number of people within the fish keeping hobby do this.

The main thing that you have to remember is that the size of the jar you use will be very important for your shrimp jar setup.

Although you can technically keep shrimp in smaller jars, we would recommend you use a 1 gallon jar as the absolute minimum but a 2 gallon jar is usually going to be better for most shrimp.

Are Shrimp Jars Beginner Friendly?

We have seen many people on social media say that shrimp jars are beginner friendly and this is true to some extent but the lack of a filter in a jar can cause problems for most people.

The vast majority of shrimp jars that are successful and help the shrimp thrive will use the Walstad method to maintain water parameters and feed the shrimp.

We have this article going over how to build a walstad shrimp bowl that is essentially the exact same method but you just switch the bowl for a jar and then you have a shrimp jar.

These self sustaining shrimp eco systems using the Walstad method can theoretically last for years without you having to do anything but it can be tricky to set the perfect eco system up if you are a beginner.

If you are brand new to keeping shrimp jars then we would highly recommend that you do your best to play around with the Walstad method but also check the jars water parameters every week or two and make any required adjustments as needed.

What Size Jar Do I Need For A Shrimp Jar?

There are a wide range of different jars that can be used for a shrimp jar with most being able to offer a great environment for your shrimp to thrive in if they are set up correctly.

As we touched on earlier, we feel that the 1 gallon jar is the absolute minimum that you should use, especially if you are a beginner.

We have a dedicated guide going over how to setup a 1 gallon shrimp tank and you basically follow the same instructions but you use a shrimp jar instead of a shrimp tank.

Ideally though, you really should be trying to go with a 2 gallon jar if possible, especially if you are looking to build out your very first shrimp jar.

As we covered in our article on how to setup a 2 gallon shrimp tank, the additional gallon of water in the jar really helps to slow down problems with water parameters making it more forgiving on people new to keeping shrimp jars who are building up their initial skills.

How Many Shrimp Can You Put In A Jar?

This is a question that we see asked a lot and the answer really depends on the size of the shrimp jar that you are using.

The specific type of shrimp that you are keeping will also come into play so keep that in mind too.

Many people stick to 10 shrimp per gallon of water in their shrimp jar but this is usually if you have experience in keeping shrimp.

If you are a total beginner then we would actually recommend that you try to stick to around 5 shrimp per gallon to reduce the bio load on your tank.

Just keep in mind that unless you are able to keep an all male or all female shrimp tank, they will breed and you will have lots of baby shrimp in no time.

What Type of Shrimp Can I Keep In A Shrimp Jar?

The five standard shrimp can work very well in a shrimp jar meaning that most people keep cherry shrimp, neon yellow shrimp, blue dream shrimp, ghost shrimp or amano shrimp in their shrimp jars but other types of shrimp can work well too.

We would usually recommend that you stick to just one type of shrimp to prevent issues with cross breeding or shrimp eating each other in your shrimp jar too.

The majority of people will usually go with a neocaridina shrimp type so cherry shrimp, neon yellow shrimp or blue dream shrimp.

Not only do they offer the beautiful bright colors that usually draw people to the shrimp keeping hobby but they are also cheaper and easier to keep than other types of shrimp.

Some people will keep caridina shrimp types in a shrimp jar though so ghost shrimp or amano shrimp but this is usually if the shrimp jar is being used to breed shrimp to later transfer into your main display aquarium to replace shrimp that your fish eat.

Do I Need To Add Plants To A Shrimp Jar?

We would highly recommend that you try to add suitable plants to your shrimp jar with there usually being a number of different plants that you are able to use for various jar sizes.

Not only do the plants help with water parameters but they also help replenish the oxygen in the jar while removing the CO2.

In addition to that, the detritus provided by the plants make a great shrimp food and most shrimp will also eat the algae that grow on the plants.

Here are some of our favorite plants for a shrimp tank but if you are strictly keeping your shrimp in a jar then you will have to check the expected lengths of the plants:-

We have a guide going over how to setup a no filter shrimp tank that is a variant of the standard Walstad method that you may find helpful as its filter system is based around plants.

How Do I Feed Shrimp In A Shrimp Jar?

As we touched on above, the majority of people keeping a shrimp jar will try to take advantage of various live plants and add them to the jar to be the primary source of food for the shrimp.

If you wish, you are able to supplement this with a wide range of shrimp suitable foods.

Due to it being popularised on social media so much, many people give their shrimp vegetables but this is not essential in most shrimp jar setups.

Popular vegetables for shrimp include but are not limited to:-

  • Cucumber
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Zucchini
  • Sweet Potato
  • Carrot
  • Broccoli

Many people also take advantage of leaf litter from their gardens or buy actual leaves such as Indian almond leaves for their shrimp to eat.

Can I Add Fish To A Shrimp Jar?

We would not recommend that you add fish to a shrimp jar as they are just too small.

Your shrimp jar is likely to only be a gallon or two in size so its just not big enough for most fish and they will also compete with your shrimp for food.

We know that there are photographs of social media of people keeping fish in shrimp jars but we really don’t recommend it as the fish will be unhappy while also having an increased chance of it eating your shrimp too.