Does Guppy Eat Shrimp? Finding Harmony in a Multi-Species Aquarium

Keeping guppies and shrimp together in an aquarium can make for a vibrant underwater community. However, their coexistence requires an understanding of their distinct behaviors and needs to ensure mutual harmony. A common concern that arises is – do guppies eat shrimp?

The answer isn’t straightforward. While guppies are primarily peaceful community fish, their omnivorous appetite means shrimp may occasionally show up on the menu. However with the right tank setup and care, shrimp and guppy predation can be minimized.

Guppies – Omnivorous Appetites Underplay Their Gentle Nature

Guppies are a favorite freshwater fish amongst aquarium hobbyists, loved for their lively colors, peaceful temperament and ease of care. Despite their small size, guppies have characteristically big appetites for such little fish

As omnivores, guppies consume both plant and animal matter. Their diet in an aquarium environment ideally includes

  • High-quality omnivore flake food or pellets to provide balanced daily nutrition. This contains plant and animal ingredients to meet their needs as omnivores.

  • Supplemental feedings of live, frozen or freeze-dried foods such as brine shrimp, blood worms or daphnia. This provides added protein important for their growth and coloration.

  • Vegetable matter like blanched spinach or cucumber to bulk up their diet. The fiber aids their digestion.

While tiny creatures like shrimp may sometimes end up as prey for protein-hungry guppies, their harmless nature generally prevails. With a varied, nutrient-rich diet provided, guppies are unlikely to actively hunt shrimp as food.

Shrimp – Peaceful Scavengers That Appreciate Cover

Dwarf shrimp like Cherry Reds are hugely popular for home aquariums because of their bright colors, energetic antics and minimal care needs. These shrimp coexist well with small, peaceful fish like guppies.

However, their vulnerability during molting periods and much smaller size compared to guppies necessitates some precautions in a shared tank. Their key needs include:

  • Hiding spots: Shrimp feel safest with ample plants and decor. This allows them to duck out of sight from potential predators.

  • Calcium-rich foods: Their diet should include calcium-boosting foods like blanched veggies to support molting.

  • Scavenging: Shrimp thrive when they can nibble on algae or biofilms coating surfaces. Providing rocks, wood and leaves facilitates this natural behavior.

  • Stable water conditions: Shrimp are sensitive to fluctuations in water parameters like pH and hardness. Consistency is key.

Minimizing Guppy and Shrimp Predation

While some shrimp loss is inevitable with guppies, a well-planned aquarium setup and feeding routine can limit potential predation. Here are some tips:

Choose Tank Mates Wisely

  • Select young juvenile guppies, rather than adults. They are less likely to see small shrimp as food.

  • Avoid longer-finned or aggressive guppy varieties. Short-tailed varieties are slower and calmer.

  • Introduce the shrimp first and let them establish. Adding guppies later reduces territorial issues.

Offer Shelter Through Tank Design

  • Include lots of hiding spots with plants like Java moss and Anubias. Dense thickets provide escape cover.

  • Create line of sight breaks with hardscape materials – piles of rock or wood work well.

  • Ensure the tank is not overcrowded. Adequate swimming space reduces aggression and stress.

Feed Both Species Correctly

  • Provide the guppies with balanced daily feeds with protein and vegetable matter. This reduces foraging hunger.

  • Supplement the shrimp’s diet with calcium-rich veggies to support molting. Well-fed shrimp are more active.

  • Administer foods in different tank areas. This avoids competition over food sources.

  • Introduce afterlights-out feeds for shrimp while guppies sleep. This ensures less shy shrimp eat.

Supporting Healthy Coexistence

While some baby shrimp loss is expected, following good husbandry practices can limit issues and support harmony between guppies and shrimp.

  • Perform regular partial water changes to prevent accumulation of toxins from waste. Use dechlorinator to remove chlorine.

  • Test and adjust water parameters weekly or bi-weekly. Maintain the temperature between 70°F and 80°F.

  • Provide a gently circulating filter rated for a larger tank than you have. This keeps water clean.

  • Use aquatic plant fertilizers to encourage plant growth. More plants equal more shrimp shelter.

  • Check frequently for signs of aggression or stress in either species. Isolate bullied individuals if needed.

  • Quarantine and treat new shrimp and fish before adding them to an established community tank. This prevents disease transmission.

Achieving Balance Between Guppies and Shrimp

While shrimp losses can occur when keeping guppies and shrimp together, they can definitely form a thriving mixed community with attentive care.

Providing ample plant cover and hideaways allows shrimp to follow their natural instincts to seek shelter if feeling vulnerable. Meanwhile, feeding guppies a varied, nutrient-rich diet curbs any urges to forage on shrimp as food. Maintaining excellent water quality and tank conditions further fosters harmony between the species.

With time, observation and fine-tuned husbandry, guppies and shrimp can live harmoniously together, adding both color and interest to a home freshwater aquarium.

does guppy eat shrimp

Can Red Cherry Shrimp Live With Guppies? OR WILL THE GUPPIES EAT ALL THE RED CHERRY SHRIMP????


What fish won’t eat shrimp?

The Otocinclus Catfish is the only fish we know of that is not likely to eat shrimp fry. While most fish will prey on dwarf shrimp fry, a heavily planted aquarium can be very helpful in offsetting this predation.

Will fish eat shrimp in aquarium?

Tank Mates to Avoid Also, small fish that are mainly meat eaters like to go after shrimp, so be wary of adding betta fish, dwarf cichlids, dwarf gouramis, and pea puffers. Plus, you may want to steer clear of nano fish that have a reputation for being fast and hungry, such as zebra danios and silver tip tetras.

Do guppies eat shrimp?

Feeding your guppies and shrimp the correct diet is essential to their overall health, coloration, and peaceful coexistence. Both guppies and shrimp have different dietary needs depending on their species, size, and life stage. Guppies are omnivorous fish, which means they can eat a variety of foods like veggie matter, protein or fish flakes.

Are diabetics allowed to eat shrimps?

Shrimp is appropriate for pre-diabetics and diabetics in most cases because of its minimal effect on blood sugar. Shrimp is a versatile, high protein, low carbohydrate food. It contains moderate amounts of vitamin B12, selenium, and is low in saturated fat. The concentration of cholesterol in shrimp may present an issue for some individuals with type 2 diabetes or those with already unhealthy lipid profiles. However, this is most likely only an issue if consumed in excess and in the context of an already unhealthy dietary pattern. Shrimp, when caught sustainably and consumed moderately are a healthy choice for humans and the environment. The 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggest aiming for two 4-ounce servings of seafood per week and many health experts suggest up to 12 ounces per week. Look for shrimp certified by an independent agency such as Wild American Shrimp or the Marine Stewardship Council(MSC), which certifies that wild fisheries are well-managed and sustainable. Or look for the Best Aquaculture Practices label, which is for farmed shrimp.

Can guppies eat live food?

Live foods are very nutritious and live foods are very close to what guppies eat in the wild. Here’s the list of live foods you can feed your guppies: These live foods can be purchased at your local fish store or online at Amazon. You can also make live food at home very cheaply. You can, for example, start a brine shrimp hatchery at home.

Should you keep shrimp and guppies together?

Another benefit of keeping shrimp and guppies together is that they create a natural balance in the tank, as they both occupy different parts of the aquarium. The guppies will often stay near or at the surface while shrimp are bottom feeders.

Leave a Comment