Female Amazon glass shrimp.

Amazon glass shrimp male.

 

Amazon glass shrimp male(left) and female(right) together.

 

Amazon glass shrimp eating orange food, which is visible inside its body.

 

The huge eggs of this species can be clearly seen in this shot.

 

Common Name:

Amazon glass shrimp

Scientific Name:

Palaemonetes sp., most likely Palaemonetes ivonicus

Size:

around 3.5-4.0 cm

Temperature:

tropical species, best kept at 72F-84F

Water Parameters:

wide range, not important

Food:

fish food (flake, pellets etc), hair and string algae, "anything edible"

Origin:

Amazon basin (South America)

Larval Development Type:

Abbreviated: Larval planktonic stage only lasts a day or so (or maybe even just a few hours) before larvae metamorphose into post-larvae (miniature shrimp).  The larvae of this shrimp do *not* swim freely in the water, but sit on the ground or other items in the aquarium instead.  The larvae do *not* need brackish water for this process and the young develop into adult shrimp in complete freshwater.

The Amazon glass shrimp is a very exciting shrimp from the Amazon basin in South America. It is a cousin of our native freshwater glass shrimp, but its look behavior, diet and mode of reproduction are very different. The amazon glass shrimp is a much more gracile shrimp than the american freshwater glass shrimp (AFGS).  It's not as hectic as the AFGS, but instead prefers to slowly forage for edibles in the tank. It's claws are also much smaller. 

The shrimp are extremely peaceful and I have not observed a single aggressive act to this date. I am keeping a few dwarf shrimp together with them in the same tank and the AFGS have never attacked the dwarf shrimp. In fact, during feeding time both species sit side by side and feed on commercial food. I have not kept this species with newly hatched dwarf shrimp (yet), but I will update this page with new compatibility data once such data becomes available.

Their reproduction makes this shrimp very interesting, as it has an extremely unusual mode of reproduction for Palaemonetes.  Instead of releasing free-swimming larvae into the water like it's native cousin, the AFGS has very few eggs (10-20) and produces highly developed larvae.  The larvae take an average of 40-42 days to hatch at about 77F-78F. After hatching they sit on the ground, plants and decoration and metamorphose into postlarvae (= fully functional mini-shrimp) within a day or maybe even within a few hours (have not thoroughly observed it yet). The larvae do not need any special food as it seems that they do not eat anything at all during their extremely short larval stage.

This is one of the very few shrimp from the Americas that completes its entire life cycle in freshwater.  It is a great addition to the shrimp hobby. This shrimp is currently extremely rare in the hobby. It can never be found in stores and it's only rarely imported. First priority with such rare species should be to establish breeding populations as soon as possible.  After several breeding populations of this rare shrimp have been established in the hobby, the Amazon glass shrimp should become more widely available to the average shrimp enthusiast.

 

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