Amano shrimp are an awesome wee addition to many freshwater aquariums. These little guys make a great clean-up crew by scouring the tank eating away at algae and helping keep the ecosystem in balance.
The largest of the hobby dwarf shrimp Amano shrimp are popular additions to many hobby aquariums and for good reason!
In this article, we will cover some of the most common questions regarding Amano shrimps size and growth rate and provide a comprehensive guide to ensuring your new Amano additions have all that they need to grow, develop and thrive in your aquarium!
How Big Do Amano Shrimp Get?
Amano shrimp are the largest dwarf shrimps in the aquarium hobby world. Amano shrimp reach a maximum size of up to 2 inches in length when it reaches full maturity, sometimes even slightly more!
When in pet stores the average size of an Amano shrimp is around just 1 inch. This is fine as most shrimp for sale in pet shops are still young and have some time ahead of them to mature and grow.
If you provide them with an excellent environment and set-up in your tanks at home then their growth may be more successful than it would be in a pet store tank.
Small Amano does not mean they are unhealthy it just means they have more growing to do!
How Fast Do Amano Shrimp Grow?
Amano shrimp take around 3-5 months to finish growing. At which point they will be fully mature and will not grow any larger or longer. In a healthy and optimal environment, Amano shrimp may grow a lot faster than in an unsuitable environment and reach maturity closer to 3 months rather than 5 months.
Once they reach maturity Amano shrimp usually live for 2-3 years, but in an extremely perfect environment, they have been rumored to live up to 5 years!
The point that Amano shrimp are most likely to do is when they are first brought and moved from one tank to another and this is usually due to the stress of dramatic change on their tiny bodies.
How Can You Improve The Size And Speed Of Your Amano Shrimps Growth?
There is a multitude of ways to improve the well-being of your Amano shrimps and set them up for speedy and sizable growth so they develop into healthy and active adults and active members of your tank setup.
Buy Healthy Individuals
Amano shrimp is a small and delicate species that can very easily be injured and have damaged exoskeletons with mishandling.
An Amanos is made up of multiple moving sections of the exoskeleton, the point at which they join are especially vulnerable. Their legs, eyes, and antennae are also in vulnerable positions and easily broken.
The collection methods of wild Amano shrimp, the transportation to pet shops, and the pet shop husbandry can oftentimes be questionable and many shrimp can get damaged in the process.
When you purchase your Amano shrimp make sure you inspect each individual that they are fully formed and functional. A shrimp with injuries or missing limbs may be at a disadvantage in your tank, have reduced mobility, source less food, socialize less, and ultimately not grow as quickly or as large.
Acclimation To The Tank
Amano shrimp are notoriously hard to breed in aquariums so when you purchase your shrimps, 97% of them are wild-caught.
In their wild environments they are perfectly adapted for the ideal water quality so are at the highest risk of dying from stress when transported between tanks with different conditions.
If your tank is vastly different from the tank they are coming from they can very easily die from shock or undergo stress that will affect their long-term development.
When you first buy your shrimp you should take note of the water parameters of the store’s aquarium where the shrimp are being kept and try to match your tank as close to these parameters as you can.
Slowly drip your tank water into the water the Amano come home into over a few hours so that they can slowly adapt to the new water from their old water.
Filter and Condition Tank Water
Regular tap water can contain chlorine and chloramine from the human treatment process. The latter doesn’t evaporate from the water once the water has been left and settled and in high concentrations can cause death to Amano shrimp.
To remove chloramine from the water you should use aquarium conditioners to prepare any tap water for use in an aquarium and remove these harmful minerals to ensure your Amano’s grow well.
Tank Size and Population Density
How large your tank is will depend on how many Amano shrimp you intend to keep in it. You should have at least 5 liters of water per shrimp so the more shrimp you have the larger the tank should be so you don’t overstock the tank.
Too many Amani shrimp in a small tank will mean there is not enough food available for all the shrimp to get adequate amounts and they may not grow and develop very well.
- Amano shrimp should only be kept in freshwater aquariums
- Optimal temperature is 73-82 °F (23-27 °C)
- The best pH is from 5.8 – 7.0
- Amano Shrimp are highly active and need an aquarium with lots of plants, hides and places to explore and climb
- Amano should not be housed with aggressive fish species as they can eat or injure Amano or keep them from food sources
- Keep shrimp the same size together as larger shrimp will dominate the smaller ones and hog all the food sources, meaning smaller shrimp wont develop as well
If your tank meets these parameters it will help your Amano to grow and thrive!
Always Have Food Available
Amano shrimp basically spend all day every day swimming around looking for food. They like to investigate every stone and plant searching for algae to eat.
You should also provide them with extra food in addition to the waste they will naturally find in the tank such as cucumber or zucchini, shrimp flakes, and live insects. Any excess food that isn’t eaten should be removed from the tank so its decomposition doesn’t cause the ammonia to spike in the water.
Your Amano shrimp will regulate molt their exoskeleton as they grow. The exoskeleton consists of lots of great vitamins and minerals so you should leave the molt in the tank for a few days and let the shrimp consume the molt to get all the nutritional goodness from it!
These keratin and calcium is awesome to help shrimp grow well.
Is There A Size Difference Between Males And Females
Yes, there is a size difference between male and female Amano shrimp. Females are often larger than the males.
There are also a few other ways to sex Amano shrimps aside from size difference:
- Tail shape – Females have broader tails
- Exoskeleton pattern – female have long dots and males have spaced out dots
- Saddle – females have a “saddle” underneath their abdomen that resembles a small flap. This is where is stores her eggs.
- Abdomen shape – females will have a rounder abdomen designed for carrying eggs
As you now know Amano shrimp tend to grow up to 2″ in size with the females being larger. And proper acclimation, tank conditions, and looking for healthy individuals are the best ways to help your amanos grow as big as they can be.