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Is Cherry Shrimp Safe For Live Feeding?

Cherry shrimp are mostly known for being the perfect pet for aquariums – beautiful and calm. But the size of these arthropods makes the fish enthusiasts wonder if they can be good enough and safe for live feeding.

Cherry shrimp are generally safe to be used as food in live feeding. These shrimp are primarily prey for fish and occasionally for other aquatic pets. However, it’s important to know if these shrimp provide nutritional benefits to the fish before using them for live feeding.

Now the question is – how much of the compatible cherry shrimp are as fish food? And how much of these shrimp are perfect for feeding? Well, let’s find that out.

Key Takeaways

  • Cherry shrimp are safe for live feeding and contain useful nutrients.
  • They’re ideal for live feeding due to their size and compatibility.
  • The feeding ratio depends on the fish’s size and behavior.

Nutritional Value Of Cherry Shrimp

As one of the suitable options for live feeding, cherry shrimp also comes with specific nutrients. Undoubtedly, all those nutrients can significantly influence the growth of your fish. Looking at the list below will make you agree for sure.

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NutritionAmount (Per 100 grams)
Vitamin E2.3mg
Vitamin B123.5μg
Vitamin B60.1mg
Vitamin B32.5mg

The nutritional content of shrimp may vary depending on factors such as their diet and habitat; thus, this chart may not be exact.

Cherry shrimp are generally considered safe as live food for fish and invertebrates. As one source notes, cherry shrimp do not contain high levels of thiaminase like some other fish, making them a nutritious snack without health risks.

Nutritional Profile of Different Live Feeder Options

I have created a basic table structure for comparing the nutritional values of different live feeder options like Cherry Shrimp, Brine Shrimp, Daphnia, Mysis Shrimp, and Bloodworm. The table is designed to show their protein, fat, and nutrient contents.

Feeder TypeProtein (%)Fat (%)Other Nutrients
Cherry Shrimp201.5Sodium 300mg, Vitamin E 2.3mg, Cholesterol 195g, Vitamin B12 3.5μg, Selenium 35μg, Vitamin B6 0.1mg, Vitamin B3 2.5mg, Copper 0.1mg, Phosphorus 250mg, Choline 150mg
Brine Shrimp37-7112-30Carbohydrate 11%-23%, Ash 4%-21%
Daphnia40-60 (dry weight)
Mysis Shrimp6.5 (min)1.2 (min)Omega-3, Omega-6 35%, DHA 13.5%, EPA 13.5%, ARA 3.2%, Crude Fiber (max) 1.4%, Moisture (max) 93.0%
Bloodworm55.7 (dry weight)9.7Water 87.9%, N-free extractive substances 26.4%, Ash 8.2%, Arginine 2.12%, Histidine 1.02%, Isoleucine 1.98%, Leucine 2.49%, Valine 1.99%, Lysine 2.48%, Phenylalanine 2.76%, Methionine 2.19%, Threonine 2.01%, Tryptophan 1.39%

Please note that for some feeders, the protein and fat percentages are based on dry weight. The nutrient content can vary significantly based on the feeder’s diet and environment.

Why Is Using Cherry Shrimp For Live Feeding Okay?

Okay, now you know there’s nothing wrong with using cherry shrimp for live feeding. But why is something so exceptional okay as a part of the fish diet? Well, for the following reasons.

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1. Compatibility And Size

To be suitable as prey, being small in size is a must, and that’s what cherry shrimp are. The smaller size doesn’t only make it easier for fish to catch them. It also reduces the chance of harming the predator fish while consuming them. Yes, I’m talking about hazards like choking or any other digestive issues.

2. Nutritional Value

Let’s call it the best part of cherry shrimp live feeding.

Not only are these shrimp rich in protein, but they also offer a well-rounded nutritional profile.

So, whether you’re asking about omnivorous or carnivorous predators, cherry shrimp are an excellent food source for all of them. Plus, these shrimp provide better nutrients than processed or commercial food.

3. Easy Breeding

You’ll find only a few shrimp that are easy to breed, like cherry shrimp. So, if you’re asking for a steady supply of live food for your fish in the aquarium, breeding these shrimp is a great idea. Plus, breeding them is nothing expensive as well.

4. Stimulating Natural Behavior

Whatever predatory species you’ve got in your aquarium can lose its hunting and foraging behavior over time. But when you feed them cherry shrimp live, they can regain their old charm. Not only will this kind of practice retrieve their natural behavior, but it will also promote mental stimulation.

5. Enhancing Coloration

Some aquarium enthusiasts believe that feeding cherry shrimp to predatory fish can contribute to enhancing their natural coloration.

They say cherry shrimp’s pigments improve varied and vibrant color patterns in certain predators.

a berried blue cherry shrimp with eggs
Owner: Natalie Skinner

How Much Cherry Shrimp Is Enough For Live Feeding?

There’s no specific amount of cherry shrimp for live feeding I can suggest to you without knowing what kind of fish you’ve got in your aquarium.  But I indeed can say that if you follow these guidelines, feeding them the right amount should be easier for you.

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1. Considering The Size Of The Fish

If you’ve smaller fish in your tank, you better go for a few cherry shrimp for a single feeding. But when your tank is full of larger fish, a greater quantity shouldn’t be a problem.

2. Monitoring The Fish’s Behavior

Keep a close eye on your fish’s behavior. If you see that they’re gobbling the shrimp, increase the proportion of live feeding. It might happen when their nutritional needs are not appropriately met.

By the way, quicker consumption indicates that they already like it. But make sure that you’re not overfeeding them. It can lead to water quality issues in the aquarium.

3. Frequency Of Feeding

Know the dietary needs of your fish and adjust the frequency of live feeding accordingly. Depending on the species, the requirement for live feeding, including the frequency, can be higher or lower. It’ll be better if you can balance the diet with various foods.

Yes, I’m talking about the balance between live and commercial food.

Red Cherry Shrimp vs Other Live Feeder Fish

Here is a table comparing the care requirements of Red Cherry Shrimp to some potential live feeder fish to help determine if Cherry Shrimp are suitable as live food:

Care RequirementRed Cherry ShrimpPotential Live Feeder Fish
Tank Size5+ gallonsDepends on species but generally 10+ gallons
Temperature68-77°FMost fish do well at 72-82°F
pH6.5-8.06.5-8.0 generally
HardnessSoft to moderately hard (5-15 dGH)Varies by species but many do well in 5-15 dGH
FilterNot required but recommendedRequired
HeaterNot absolutely needed but helps stabilityRecommended for most tropical species
Hiding SpotsShrimp appreciate plants and driftwoodFish need hides and breaks in line of sight
DietOmnivorous scavengers eating algae, biofilm, fish foodCarnivorous/omnivorous depending on species
HardinessMore fragile than most fish, sensitive to parametersGenerally hardier than shrimp

common alternatives to Red Cherry Shrimp for live feeding

Here are some common alternatives to Red Cherry Shrimp that can be considered as live food for fish:

Brine Shrimp

  • Very small size suitable for fry and juveniles. Easy to hatch fresh batches. High protein content.
  • Must be hatched fresh daily. Short shelf life hatched.


  • Known as “fish’s caviar”. Nutritious microfauna eaten by many fish. Can be cultured at home.
  • Requires culture setup and maintenance. May be difficult for beginners.


  • Rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals. Many fish readily accept as food. Commercially available live or frozen.
  • Lower nutritional value than artemia or daphnia. May pollute water if overfed.

Mysis Shrimp

  • Larger size suitable for adult fish. Highly nutritious. Fish easily recognize as food.
  • Commercially produced so not as sustainable as home cultures. More expensive than other live foods.

Before We Go…

It seems there’s no problem with feeding cherry shrimp to your fish. But what about you? I mean, can you, a human, eat cherry shrimp? And even if you do, should there be any problem? Well, in my blog – Can Humans Eat Cherry Shrimps? I’ve given all the answers. All you need to do is just click and get them.

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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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