Bamboo shrimp

10 Great Bamboo Shrimp Tank Mates

Keeping a bamboo shrimp (wood shrimp or fan shrimp) in your aquarium can be an intriguing and visually appealing experience. These unique freshwater creatures are known for their elaborate feeding behavior and striking appearance. However, selecting the right Bamboo shrimp tank mates becomes crucial when creating a harmonious tank environment. In this article, we will explore the best tank mates for bamboo shrimp, ensuring a peaceful and thriving aquarium ecosystem.

Understanding Bamboo Shrimp

Before exploring the ideal tank mates for bamboo shrimp, it’s important to have a solid understanding of these fascinating creatures. Bamboo shrimp, scientifically known as Atyopsis moluccensis, are freshwater crustaceans native to Southeast Asia’s flowing rivers and streams. They have become increasingly popular in the aquarium hobby due to their unique appearance and intriguing behavior.

Appearance and Behavior

Bamboo shrimp possess a distinct and eye-catching appearance. They showcase vibrant colors ranging from pale shades of red to deep hues of brown. One of their most striking features is their large, fan-like appendages that extend into the water. These appendages, also known as their “fans,” are covered in delicate hair-like structures called setae.

Bamboo shrimp are relatively peaceful and docile creatures. They spend much time perched on rocks, driftwood, or any other solid surface in the aquarium where they can effectively filter-feed. Their sedentary nature and filter-feeding behavior make them intriguing additions to any aquatic setup.

Unique Feeding Habits

Their filter-feeding technique sets bamboo shrimp apart from many other aquarium shrimp species. They are excellent filter feeders, relying on their specialized fans to capture tiny particles from the water column. These particles can include organic matter, microscopic algae, and other detritus. The shrimp extend their fans into the water, creating a graceful and mesmerizing spectacle as they continuously filter-feed.

Bamboo shrimp require a constant flow of water to facilitate successful filter feeding. This ensures a steady supply of suspended food particles for them to capture and consume. Maintaining a well-oxygenated and adequately circulated aquarium is crucial for their feeding behavior and overall health.

Bamboo shrimp are known for their efficiency in filtering the water, helping to maintain excellent water quality in the aquarium. However, it’s important to note that their feeding habits also produce waste. Regular water changes and maintenance are necessary to keep the water parameters stable and provide a clean and healthy environment for these shrimp and their tank mates.

In addition to their unique feeding behavior, bamboo shrimp exhibit interesting social interactions. They are generally peaceful and non-aggressive towards other tank inhabitants. It’s common to see them perched alongside other shrimp or fish, peacefully sharing the same space.

Due to their specific feeding requirements and delicate nature, providing suitable tank mates becomes essential for the well-being of bamboo shrimp. By carefully selecting compatible tank mates, you can ensure a harmonious and thriving aquarium environment for these captivating creatures.

Now that we have a solid understanding of bamboo shrimp let’s delve into the importance of choosing the right tank mates and explore some factors to consider when selecting suitable companions for these fascinating crustaceans.

Importance of Choosing Tank Mates

Selecting suitable tank mates for your bamboo shrimp is paramount when creating a community tank. Choosing the right companions enhances the aesthetic appeal of the aquarium and ensures a peaceful and stress-free environment for all inhabitants. By considering the following factors, you can promote a harmonious ecosystem and create an ideal habitat for your bamboo shrimp:

  1. Size Compatibility: It is crucial to choose tank mates similar to your bamboo shrimp. Opting for significantly larger fish may intimidate or harm the shrimp, while smaller fish may be vulnerable to the shrimp’s filter-feeding appendages. Maintaining a balance in size among tank mates minimizes stress and potential conflicts, ensuring the well-being of all inhabitants.
  2. Water Parameters: Bamboo shrimp have specific water parameter requirements for temperature, pH level, and water hardness. When selecting tank mates, ensuring compatibility with these parameters is important. Keeping the water conditions within the preferred range of all species promotes optimal health and well-being. Research the specific needs of each potential tank mate and use water testing kits like Freshwater Aquarium Test Strips 5 in 1 to ensure they align with the requirements of your bamboo shrimp.
  3. Aggressiveness: Some fish species are known for their aggressive behavior, which can threaten the peaceful nature of bamboo shrimp. Aggressive or fin-nipping fish can cause stress, injury, or even death to the shrimp. Choosing peaceful and non-aggressive tank mates that exhibit compatible behavior is advisable. This will help maintain a tranquil and stress-free environment for your bamboo shrimp and other tank inhabitants.

You can create a balanced and thriving community tank by carefully considering these factors and selecting compatible tank mates. A well-designed tank with suitable companions ensures that each species can coexist harmoniously, minimizing resource competition and reducing the risk of aggression or territorial disputes.

Remember, the primary goal is to create a serene and natural environment that allows your bamboo shrimp to thrive while providing an engaging and visually appealing display for you to enjoy. Taking the time to research and choose the right tank mates demonstrates your commitment to the well-being of your aquatic companions.

In the next sections, we will explore the top 10 bamboo shrimp tank mates, discussing their compatibility and the benefits they bring to your aquarium ecosystem.

Top 10 Bamboo Shrimp Tank Mates

Now let’s explore the top 10 bamboo shrimp tank mates carefully selected for their compatibility, peaceful nature, and ability to thrive alongside bamboo shrimp.

Cherry Shrimp

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Cherry Shrimp

Cherry shrimp, also known as Neocaridina davidi, are small and peaceful shrimp that make excellent tank mates for bamboo shrimp. They are compatible in terms of size and water parameter requirements. Cherry shrimp add vibrant colors to the aquarium and are known for their active and social behavior, creating an engaging display alongside bamboo shrimp.

Neon Tetras

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Neon Tetras

Neon tetras (Paracheirodon innesi) are popular freshwater fish that coexist well with bamboo shrimp. These small, schooling fish are peaceful and non-aggressive. Neon tetras exhibit beautiful iridescent blue and red colors, creating a visually striking contrast with the bamboo shrimp. They prefer similar water parameters and add lively movement to the aquarium.

Otocinclus Catfish

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Otocinclus

Otocinclus catfish, often called “otos,” are peaceful bottom-dwelling fish that are ideal companions for bamboo shrimp. These small catfish have a unique appearance with their flattened body and sucker-like mouth. Otocinclus catfish feed on algae, making them great tank mates as they help maintain a clean and well-balanced ecosystem. They peacefully coexist with bamboo shrimp and add a touch of activity to the bottom of the aquarium.

Bristlenose Pleco

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Pleco

Bristlenose plecos (Ancistrus sp.) are another popular choice as tank mates for bamboo shrimp. These small catfish have a unique appearance with their bristle-like appendages on their head, giving them their name. Bristlenose plecos are peaceful and efficient algae eaters, contributing to a clean aquarium environment. They are compatible with water parameter requirements and provide interesting interactions within the tank.

Harlequin Rasbora

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Harlequin Rasboras

Harlequin rasboras (Trigonostigma heteromorpha) are colorful and peaceful schooling fish that make excellent Bamboo shrimp tank mates. These vibrant fish display striking orange and black patterns, adding color to the aquarium. Harlequin rasboras are known for their peaceful behavior and create a lively atmosphere with their active swimming. They are compatible regarding water parameters and coexist harmoniously with bamboo shrimp.

Corydoras Catfish

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Cory Catfish

Corydoras catfish, or cory cats, are popular in community aquariums, including those with bamboo shrimp. These small catfish have a peaceful nature and thrive in groups. Corydoras catfish are known for their playful and social behavior. They scavenge the aquarium substrate for food, creating an interesting dynamic alongside bamboo shrimp. They are compatible with water parameter requirements and provide a delightful addition to the tank.

Ember Tetras

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Ember Tetra

Ember tetras (Hyphessobrycon amandae) are tiny, peaceful fish well-suited as bamboo shrimp tank mates. These colorful fish showcase a vibrant orange-red coloration, creating a stunning visual contrast. Ember tetras are peaceful and non-aggressive, making them ideal companions for bamboo shrimp. They prefer similar water parameters and add movement and liveliness to the middle and upper levels of the aquarium.

Kuhli Loaches

Bamboo shrimp tank matess - Kuhli Loaches

Kuhli loaches (Pangio kuhlii) are slender and peaceful fish known for their unique appearance and behavior. These eel-like loaches have a peaceful temperament and spend most of their time burrowing and exploring the aquarium substrate. Kuhli loaches are great Bamboo shrimp tank mates regarding water parameter requirements. They add an intriguing and active element to the lower regions of the aquarium, coexisting harmoniously with bamboo shrimp.

Endler’s Livebearers

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Endlers

Endler’s livebearers (Poecilia wingei) are small, peaceful fish closely related to guppies. They exhibit stunning colors and patterns, ranging from vibrant blues and greens to striking reds and yellows. Endler’s livebearers are active swimmers and add a dynamic and lively presence to the aquarium. They are compatible as Bamboo shrimp tank mates regarding water parameters and provide an engaging display.

Celestial Pearl Danio

Bamboo shrimp tank mates - Celestial Pearl Danios

Celestial pearl danios (Danio margaritatus) are small, peaceful fish and make great Bamboo shrimp tank mates. Also known as galaxy rasboras or celestial pearl danios, these fish showcase a mesmerizing pattern of iridescent blue, red, and white colors. Celestial pearl danios prefer similar water parameters to bamboo shrimp and coexist peacefully, adding beauty and movement to the aquarium.

Each of these carefully selected tank mates complements bamboo shrimp by providing compatibility in size and water parameter requirements. They contribute to the aesthetic appeal of the aquarium and create a harmonious ecosystem where all inhabitants can thrive. Remember always to research the specific care requirements of each species to ensure a successful and balanced community tank.

The next section will discuss best practices for introducing tank mates to your bamboo shrimp aquarium, ensuring a smooth transition and minimizing stress for all inhabitants.

Best Practices for Introducing Bamboo Shrimp Tank Mates

When introducing new Bamboo shrimp tank mates to an aquarium, it’s important to follow certain best practices to minimize stress and ensure a successful integration. By taking the following steps, you can help facilitate a smooth transition and promote harmonious coexistence among the inhabitants:

  1. Acclimate Gradually: Before introducing new tank mates, it is crucial to acclimate them to the water parameters of your bamboo shrimp aquarium. This can be done by slowly adding small amounts of water from the aquarium to the bag or container holding the new arrivals. Gradually adjusting them to the temperature and water chemistry of the tank reduces the shock and stress they may experience during the transition.
  2. Provide Hiding Places: Offering sufficient hiding places and vegetation in the aquarium is essential for creating a sense of security for all inhabitants, including the bamboo shrimp and the new tank mates. Rocks, caves, driftwood, and live plants provide hiding spots where the shrimp and fish can retreat when needed. This helps reduce potential conflicts and allows each species to establish their territories.
  3. Monitor Behavior Closely: During the initial introduction phase, it’s important to closely observe the behavior of the bamboo shrimp and the new tank mates. Watch for any signs of aggression, stress, or harassment. If any issues arise, such as nipping, chasing, or aggressive behavior, separating the incompatible tank mates may be necessary. Monitoring the tank closely helps ensure the well-being of all inhabitants.

By following these best practices, you can increase the likelihood of a smooth and successful integration of new tank mates into your bamboo shrimp aquarium. Remember, patience is key during this process, as it may take time for all inhabitants to adjust and establish their places within the tank.

Avoiding Problematic Tank Mates

While choosing Bamboo shrimp tank mates, it’s crucial to be aware of fish species that may pose challenges or create an incompatible environment. By avoiding certain fish known for aggression, fin-nipping tendencies, or predatory behavior towards smaller shrimp, you can ensure a peaceful and stress-free environment for your bamboo shrimp. Here are three types of fish to avoid:

  1. Aggressive Cichlids: Certain cichlid species, such as African or South American cichlids, are known for their territorial behavior and aggressive nature. These fish may harass or attack the bamboo shrimp, causing stress and potential harm. It is best to avoid keeping aggressive cichlids in the same tank as bamboo shrimp to maintain a harmonious environment.
  2. Fin-nipping Tetras: Some tetra species, like Serpae Tetras or Black Skirt Tetras, tend to nip at the fins of slower-moving tank mates. This behavior can cause stress and injury to the delicate appendages of bamboo shrimp. It is advisable to avoid fin-nipping tetras with bamboo shrimp to prevent potential harm and maintain the shrimp’s well-being.
  3. Predatory Fish: Predatory fish, such as larger cichlids, aggressive barbs, or some predatory catfish species, may consider smaller shrimp-like bamboo shrimp, as prey. These fish have a natural instinct to hunt and consume smaller organisms, which can significantly threaten the shrimp. It is essential to avoid introducing predatory fish into the same tank as bamboo shrimp to ensure their safety.

By avoiding fish species known for aggression, fin-nipping tendencies, or predatory behavior, you can create a tranquil and compatible community tank for your bamboo shrimp. Remember to research the temperament and compatibility of any potential Bamboo shrimp tank mates before adding them to your aquarium to ensure a harmonious coexistence.


Creating a bamboo shrimp tank with suitable tank mates enhances your aquarium’s overall experience and visual appeal. By understanding the unique feeding behavior of bamboo shrimp and considering factors like size compatibility, water parameters, and aggressiveness, you can select tank mates that will thrive alongside them. Remember to introduce new tank mates gradually, provide hiding places, and monitor behavior closely to ensure a smooth integration process.

Following these guidelines and providing a well-balanced and compatible community, you can create a captivating aquarium ecosystem where your bamboo shrimp and tank mates coexist harmoniously. Enjoy the beauty and tranquility of your bamboo shrimp tank as it becomes a captivating centerpiece in your home or office.


Can bamboo shrimp live with other shrimp species?

Bamboo shrimp can generally coexist with other peaceful shrimp species such as cherry, Amano, or ghost shrimp. However, monitoring their interactions and ensuring an adequate food supply for all shrimp is crucial.

Can bamboo shrimp live with fish that require different water parameters?

While it’s ideal to select Bamboo shrimp tank mates with similar water parameter requirements, bamboo shrimp can adapt to a moderate range of conditions. It’s essential to maintain stable and suitable water conditions for the well-being of all inhabitants.

Do bamboo shrimp reproduce in captivity?

Bamboo shrimp reproduction in captivity is rare and challenging. They have complex larval stages that require specific conditions to survive and develop. As a result, successful reproduction is typically observed in specialized breeding setups.

How can I ensure my bamboo shrimp receive enough food in a community tank?

Bamboo shrimp are filter feeders and rely on a constant water flow containing tiny food particles. Ensuring an adequate supply of microscopic algae, organic matter, and commercially available shrimp food will help meet their dietary needs.

Are bamboo shrimp suitable for beginner aquarium keepers?

Bamboo shrimp require specific care and attention to thrive. While they can be kept by beginners, it’s crucial to research their requirements and provide suitable tank conditions, including water flow and food supply.


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