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Do Cherry Shrimp Eat Bloodworms?

I’m sure not most of the shrimp enthusiast would think of keeping bloomworms on the diet list of their red spartans. It’ll be nothing surprising if they count it harmful or think their shrimp won’t like a bite of them. But do cherry shrimp really eat bloodworms?

Cherry shrimp eat bloodworms. As a source of protein, bloodworms can greatly influence their growth and reproductive health. However, it’s better to feed them bloodworms no more than once or twice a week.

Now the question is, if bloodworms are so good for the shrimp’s health, why can’t they be a primary food source? And are there any other benefits besides those I’ve mentioned above? Well, I can’t answer that if you don’t start scrolling now.

Key Takeaways

  • Bloodworms work as a good source of protein and are helpful in growth and reproduction.
  • It’s suggested to use bloodworms as treats, not as staple food.
  • Bloodworms are not ideal as the primary food source as they can deliver too much protein, are comparatively expensive, and are tough to digest.

Bloodworms: The Nutritional Benefits

Okay, I admit it! I used to think that feeding my cherry shrimp with some bloodworms was going to backfire. But after some research, that misconception of mine didn’t take much time to shatter. And surprisingly, they turned into a pile of nutritional benefits, such as –

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ProteinInfluencing overall growth and development.
Amino AcidImproving various physiological functions of cherry shrimp.
Vitamins and MineralsMaking shell development and molting better.

Why Bloodworms Are Great As Treat for cherry shrimps?

Looking at the benefits, a few shrimp enthusiasts might feel like using them in the primary diet. Sorry to say, but bloodworms are good as treats only. Don’t worry; even as a treat, they can bring amazing benefits to the table.


Bloodworms are amazingly useful in boosting the shrimp’s growth. All credit goes to their high protein content. Plus, they equally contribute to the arthropod’s reproduction and molting, especially if they’re young or female.

group of yellow red cherry shrimp feeding
Owner: Maryanne Young


The purpose of treats is not only to provide nutritional benefits but also to make the shrimp more active. It gets served perfectly with bloodworms as they make cherry shrimp scavenging for food. Plus, fresh bloodworms are moving food.

So, the shrimp need to activate their foraging instinct to get them.

Clean Up Leftovers

You never know how much hidden leftover food is lying in the tank. But when you’re dropping bloodworms there, they can eat up the leftover/detritus and keep the water quality right on point.

Should You Use Bloodworms As Primary Food for Cherry Shrimp?

This is not something I’d suggest in the first place. Bloodworms are great as a treat but not as primary food. Now the question is – why?

Well, of course, for the following reasons:

Too Much Protein

Indeed, bloodworms are high in protein and can be useful in ensuring the shrimp’s growth. But when you’re using them as a primary food source, overfeeding that kind of protein can stress out the shrimp.

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Plus, it can mess with the water quality. So, it’s better to let the shrimp get the nutrition from food like biofilm, algae, detritus, etc.

expert quote canned carrot slices are the second favorite vegetable for cherry shrimp, and feeding them more often may enhance their red coloration 10


I don’t think you’re planning to spend too much on any expensive diet while knowing there are cheaper and better alternatives. So, there’s no point in using bloodworms as primary food, as they can take a toll on your pocket.

Tough to Digest

Bloodworms come with chitin. It’s a complex sugar that can be tough for the shrimp to digest, especially when provided in large quantities. It’s even can kill the shrimp with constipation.

Decomposing Quickly

If your shrimp misses the bloodworms somehow, they will decompose quite quickly. This will not only release ammonia but also other harmful substances. And the result? The ammonia in your tank will spike and ultimately harm your shrimp.

Best Practices to Feed Bloodworms to Cherry Shrimp

Are you planning to try bloodworms for your cherry shrimp for the first time? Great! But make sure you’re following the best practices while using them. Yes, I’m talking about the following ones.


Always prioritize quality while picking bloodworms for your shrimp. It doesn’t matter if you’re getting the frozen or live ones. Grab them from a reputable source. After all, they’re often free of contaminants and perfectly safe for your shrimps.

Right Size

Make sure the size of the bloodworms is perfect for your cherry shrimp. Otherwise, not only will it be tough for them to eat the worms, but it will deteriorate the water quality by decomposing later.

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Frozen or Live

You’ll be getting them in both forms, and all are good for cherry shrimp. But I’d say go with the live bloodworms if possible, as that helps the shrimp more in stimulating their hunting behavior. Plus, live ones are comparatively more nutritious than the frozen ones.

Bloodworm Feeding Tips

Indeed, bloodworms are a food option for cherry shrimp, bringing in useful nutrients. But before you rush to the store and get some, keep these tips in mind.

  • Keep the feeding ratio to the minimum, as an excessive amount can mess with the water quality.
  • As bloodworms can sink to the bottom, put them in a spot where the shrimp can easily access them.
  • Frozen bloodworms might not be as nutritious as fresh ones. So, use them only when you’re in no spot to use fresh bloodworms.
  • Don’t drop frozen bloodworms directly in the tank. Thaw them in some water first. Make sure you’re using the tank’s water here.
  • Try to chop them so that the shrimp can eat them easily.
  • Keep a tab on the water quality to be sure the bloodworms are polluting the water.

Before We Go….

Yes, bloodworms are good enough to be used as treats only. But what about the actual diet? Figuring out the right food can be challenging not only for beginners but also for the pros.

Check out my blog, Cherry Shrimp Feeding & Diet, and I hope you won’t have to worry about that twice.

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Muntaseer Rahman

About Author

Hello, I’m Muntaseer Rahman, the owner of AcuarioPets.com. I’m passionate about aquarium pets like shrimps, snails, crabs, and crayfish. I’ve created this website to share my expertise and help you provide better care for these amazing pets.


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