The guppy is a staple fish of tanks all around the world. Their bright colours and wide availability, combined with their hardy nature, making them an excellent choice for beginner and advanced fishkeepers alike. They are community, peaceful fish that fit in anywhere.
The cherry shrimp is native to Taiwan and goes well in community fish tanks as it is also an aquatic creature with a peaceful nature. Fish keepers of all skill levels love it for its bright red colour.
Not all fishes are created equal! Some fish are known as peaceful, others semi-aggressive, and others are plain old aggressive in nature. It is important that you place fish together in a tank based upon their temperaments.
The temperament of the fish will determine how they behave toward other tank mates. A peaceful or community fish won’t bother or harm other tank mates, while aggressive and semi-aggressive fish have to be carefully placed, so they do not nip, attack, or stress other tank members.
The guppy is a gentle and friendly community fish. They get along with almost all other fish. They are hardy fish that makes good starter pets for beginner fish keepers. Male guppies are known to get aggressive with other males on some occasions.
Cherry Shrimp Temperament
The cherry shrimp is peaceful and friendly, so you can be sure they will not stress other tank members. They enjoy grazing on tank items like substrate, moss, or plants. They are active all hours of the day, and you will find them moving about constantly.
(Check out why ghost shrimp also make great tank mates for guppies.)
Habitats and Tank Requirements
Even though guppies and cherry shrimp are friendly community fish, their requirements are still unique to their species.
Being a good fish keeper means helping to recreate their natural habitat as best you can by creating a temperate environment that has plants, logs, hiding places, and substrate similar to where they came from in the wild.
Aside from making it look and feel great, you will want to make sure the pH, water quality, and chemistry are appropriate.
Guppies in the wild are found in the tropical blue waters of the Caribbean, especially Trinidad and Tobago. They are also found in Guyana, Brazil, and Venezuela, making them the South American fish. The guppy is a fan of brackish water, which is a mix of fresh and saltwater.
The guppy you find for sale in the pet store is known for being colourful and bright, while a guppy you find in the wild is a bit dull in colour as a means of staying safe against predators.
Guppy Tank Requirements
Guppies are hard-water fish, and they thrive in temperatures ranging from 78F to 82F. One of the most extraordinary things about guppies is that they are known to reproduce often and quickly, and ideal temperatures for reproduction are 72F to 79F.
Some salt in the aquarium water is okay as it will help reduce stress, and also keep his mineral levels up. Keeping pH levels between 5 and 9 is a must, but guppies do best in pH tank levels of 6.8 and 7.5. Good pH levels help the guppy absorb calcium, magnesium, and potassium more efficiently.
(Find out more about a guppies ideal pH level.)
Guppies do best in a long tank, which grants your guppy more space to swim around. The tank should be well- lit and feature lots of plants near the back and sides of the tank. It will provide them with plenty of hiding places and resting spots. The guppy should be kept with other peaceful fish, as they are peaceful fish themselves.
Cherry Shrimp Habitat
In their native Taiwan, the cherry shrimp lives in ponds and streams. Their substrates in the wild are rocky, and these bodies of water are densely populated with plants for them to enjoy.
Your goal as a fish keeper will be to emulate these conditions.
Cherry Shrimp Tank Requirements
To help your cherry shrimp feel right at home, prepare a plant-dense aquarium filled with lots of moss, hiding places, and plants.
Driftwood is also a great idea as the algae that grows on it makes a good meal for the shrimp. Moss is used for grooming and hiding. Java moss works best. Giving them the right hiding places will help their color really pop as they will feel at peace and comfortable.
You will need to keep their tank temp anywhere between 65F to 85F, and measure pH, so it is always at a level of 6.5 to 8.0. Be sure the tank is cycled correctly before adding them. Ammonia spikes have a severe impact on these shrimps, so be sure you are testing the water regularly to ensure it is safe for them.
Cherry shrimps require a filtered tank of at least 5 gallons. You should only add about two cherry shrimp per gallon of water. These shrimps also reproduce quickly, so it’s best to get a larger tank if possible.
Knowing the right methods and foods to give your fish will go a long way in keeping them healthy. In this section, we will discuss how to feed so your fish are satisfied and grow without being overfed.
In the wild, guppies eat worms, insect larvae, and shellfish. Mosquito larvae are also beloved by the guppy. For this reason, the guppy is often introduced to lakes and ponds in countries where Malaria is found as a means of reducing the mosquito population.
Meanwhile, in the tank, a quality flake food from your local fish shop is a great staple food that will get them all the nutrients needed and is easy for them to consume. Pellets are not a good idea as it is hard for them to eat. Other foods that provide enrichment and enjoyment for your guppy include freeze-dried foods and veggies.
Some right freeze-dried foods for your guppy include daphnia, bloodworms or brine shrimp. If you plan on breeding the guppy, these foods will offer them an enriching diet that will help them avoid eating their offspring. It is best to stick with freeze-dried food because live foods carry the risk of bringing disease to your tank.
(Find out how to selectively breed guppies.)
Vegetables like peas, lettuce, and cucumber are also great for your guppy. They give the guppy some variety in their diet and, of course, valuable nutrients.
Avoid overfeeding; feeding too much can lead to blocked intestines, which can make them feel stressed out as well as causing constipation, swim bladder disease, and even dropsy. Feeding twice a day is good enough and in tiny amounts. Make sure the tank temperature is on point, as proper temp ensures good digestion/metabolism.
Be sure to remove any uneaten food after mealtime is over. Watch for them to stop eating and then remove any leftovers.
(If you’re curious about what to feed your guppies then here are the best foods for guppies as well as a guide on what you should be feeding them.)
Cherry Shrimp Diet
In the wild, cherry shrimps are nature’s little cleanup crew. They eat anything and everything they can find. As omnivores, these creatures eat both plants and meat, specifically algae and organisms.
It makes it pretty easy to feed these shrimps. Always have on hand a quality pellet food designed just for shrimp; this is your staple and will get them their base nutrition. These shrimps also shed their exoskeleton, but you can leave that where it is; the shrimp will eat this to regain minerals.
You can provide enrichment and extra nutrients for your cherry shrimp by giving them veggies. Boil and blanch the vegetables first. You can give them Zucchini, cucumber, carrots, and lettuce. These guys are tiny, so don’t feed too much. Giving too much food could affect the chemistry of the tank. The tinier the serving, the better.
Thanks to their love of algae, these guys make great cleaners for the tank alongside your plecos or other algae eaters. Think of them as your pleco’s little assistants. They won’t eat as much as the pleco, but they will help.
Lastly, remove all uneaten food- pellets, veggies, etc. from the tank two hours after being fed. It will keep the tank neat and clean.
How to Make It Work?
In sum, we know that cherry shrimp and guppies make good tank mates. Here’s what to do to house them together.
- Keep pH levels 6.8 to 8.0.
- Keep water temps anywhere from 78F to 82F.
- Keep them in a filtered tank, but make sure the filter is not going to suck up the shrimp.
- Keep water hard, both species like hard water.
- Keep a pellet food available for the shrimp and flake food for the guppy- provide both species with veggies to enjoy.
- Opt for a long tank, as large as you can fit, to comfortably house both your cherry shrimp and guppies.
The guppy and the cherry shrimp are two incredible peaceful tank mates that are low maintenance and a joy to keep. Their bright colors and hardy natures make them great for beginners and advanced keepers alike.
Carefully monitor the tank parameters to ensure the well-being of your aquatic creatures, and you are sure to enjoy them for years to come.