Can betta fish live with Ghost shrimp?

In this article, we will understand the relationship between Betta fish and Ghost Shrimp. We will also learn more about their requirements and explain if they can be set up together in a community tank.

Can betta fish live with Ghost shrimp?

Yes, ghost shrimp and betta fish can live together. One of the most often asked topics by aquarists and amateurs alike is about ghost shrimp and betta. What they consume, if these two species can coexist peacefully, and what the optimal tank conditions are. Perhaps you may have heard that ghost shrimp make fantastic tank mates for betta fish or that ghost shrimp make horrible tank mates for betta fish; the topic of keeping shrimp and betta fish together is commonly discussed, with a range of possible outcomes. 

Betta fish

Betta splendens is a Southeast Asian native. These fish became renowned worldwide as a result of their battles with other males of the same species.


Betta fish inhabit standing water settings such as rice fields, floodplains, and canals across Asia, including Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam. This species has been selectively developed to exhibit a range of brilliant colors and patterns, as well as different tail shapes.

These traits add to the appeal of the Betta fish.


Betta splendens are a highly aggressive and territorial species of fish. Their violent behaviors may be monitored by exposing them to a mirror outside the tank and exposing them to their own image. Males battle furiously against one another until one of them surrenders and hides, or until one of them dies. As a result, it is not recommended to have two males in the same tank.

Following a traditional dance in which the two males swim together, open their operculums, and unfurl their tails, if none of them withdraws, they will attack their adversary by shredding their fins and inflicting serious wounds that generally weaken the fish and result in death from illness.

There have also been instances where a male realizes his opponent is far stronger and decides to surrender; in this scenario, the exhausted Betta would fade by instantly displaying the stress lines and fleeing the battle.

Females are likewise territorial, but they are less aggressive and have a harder time maintaining their hierarchy. However, in their case, such battles consist solely of bites and a beautiful dance akin to those performed by men prior to the decisive attack.

Females should never live in pairs due to their hierarchical nature.

Although male bettas are extremely territorial and aggressive toward other males of their species, they are relatively placid in community aquariums and may be kept among other peaceful fish. Females frequently coexist peacefully in community aquariums.

Tank specifications

A 20-liter tank is sufficient for breeding betta fish. The bottom must be smooth, devoid of adornment or stones, but with certain plants that have a dual purpose: first, to support the bubbles’ nest, and second, to provide cover for the female during the males’ onslaught.

The reason there should be no stones at the bottom is to allow the male to more readily locate the eggs in the bottom of the aquarium, which have a somewhat sandy hue; this will increase the male’s success significantly.

The water should not be deeper than 15 cm and have a pH of 6.8 to 7, with a hardness of up to 8 dH. It is critical that the aquarium is completely covered with a glass lid to maintain a consistent water and air temperature, and it is advised that it have a glass partition.

Additionally, it is strongly advised to utilize low-power filtration and aeration, as well as a somewhat calm surface, since the betta fish’ natural environment is typically rather peaceful.

Additionally, it is critical that the presence of nitrites is low (less than 15 ppm), or breeding will fail.

Ghost shrimp

The common name for Palaemonetes paludosus is ghost shrimp or glass shrimp. Ghost shrimp are a form of dwarf shrimp, yet they can grow very large and take up a lot of room in nano tanks; males reach around 1.5 inches (4 cm) in length, while females reach approximately 2 inches (5 cm). Although these shrimp are called for their practically translucent bodies, some may occasionally exhibit subdued yellow, gray, or brown tones.

During spawning seasons, females may even exhibit green eggs beneath their abdomens.


Ghost shrimp are indigenous to North America, more precisely to the southeastern United States. They have been observed in both freshwater and brackish water environments, and their population numbers change seasonally. These locations are often densely forested lakes and streams with sluggish water circulation, where they may conceal themselves and consume trash without being taken away by the current.

Due to their abundance in the wild, ghostly shrimp have developed into a major keystone species in a number of ecosystems; this implies that a number of predators rely on ghost shrimp to survive and subsequently feed other larger apex predators. Although ghost shrimp are capable of self-sufficiency for a few years, they are very likely to become food before reaching full development.


Ghost shrimp are a somewhat overlooked aquarium addition that may be just as thrilling as watching a fish move. They are more likely to emerge from their hiding places at night due to the decreased risk of being eaten, but if they are content with their habitat and the other fish in the tank, they will always be scavenging in the front. 

Because these shrimp are transparent, it’s very entertaining to watch them feed on biofilm and other falling trash, which you can then see pass through their bodies.

Tank specifications

Ghost shrimp are a popular addition to aquariums due to their low maintenance requirements. However, it is widely recognized that they require at least 5 gallons (19 L) of water to survive comfortably. They will like plants and driftwood that gather biofilm for them to feed on; ghost shrimp do not require a particular substrate and will thrive on gravel or sand.

Ghost shrimp thrive in tropical water temperatures, thus the tank should maintain a consistent temperature range of 72-82° F (22.2-27.8° C) and a pH of approximately 7.0.

Are Ghost Shrimp and Bettas Compatible?

Yes and no. To begin, ghost shrimp pose no harm to bettas. Bettas, on the other hand, may eat the ghost shrimp. The main danger here is that the shrimp may choke on the bettas. As you are probably aware, ghost shrimp are also known as feeder shrimp, and hence may be utilized for this purpose. They are also rather inexpensive, so you might want to consider using them for this reason.

Conversely, Bettas may not eat the ghost shrimp. If this is the case, you now have a less aggressive betta that may be kept with other species in your tank. If your bettas consume ghost shrimp, they will receive a delectable treat, and you may use them to supplement their diet.

We must mention that if bettas consume ghost shrimp, they are quite aggressive, and you must exercise caution while adding other species to the aquarium. In a nutshell, ghost shrimp may be used for this sort of test and as a food source.

How to Acclimate Your Betta to Ghost Shrimp?

There are a few steps you must take:

Provide hideouts

First, you must give a sufficient hiding place for your ghost shrimp. Adding trinkets, driftwood, and stones, as well as creating little caves, are all excellent methods. This enables the ghost shrimp to conceal itself and feel more safe. If they feel more safe, they are more likely to venture out into the open and investigate the tank.

The size of the tank Is critical

It is recommended that you have a minimum of a 10-gallon tank. While there are several examples of aquarists successfully housing both species in smaller tanks, the success rate is often significantly lower and the risk is much greater. This occurs because bettas are stressed out by living in a small tank, and as a result, they become more aggressive.

They are more likely to attack ghost shrimp when they are more aggressive. It is possible to have ghost shrimp and betta in the same tank, but it takes a lot of work.

According to some experts, you should acquire betta that have previously been exposed to ghost shrimp. This is the most effective approach to ensure it does not consume your ghost shrimp. Regrettably, locating one is extremely difficult, if not impossible, in the majority of situations. Maintain an eye out for tiny pet businesses that sell betta that have this advantage.

Prior to Bettas, add Ghost Shrimp

Always begin a tank with ghost shrimp. If you already have a betta in the tank, remove it and redecorate it before adding ghost shrimp. If you introduce the betta first, it will treat the entire tank as its domain, making the addition of other species impossible or extremely difficult.

Is It Possible for Betta to Eat Ghost Shrimp?

While ghost shrimp and betta fish may coexist in the same tank, there are certain risks associated, as previously stated. In a nutshell, yes, betta can consume ghost shrimp.

They may be a delectable treat for your fish. While ghost shrimp are consumed on a regular basis in nature, they do have a slight chance of escaping, particularly from bettas.

Unfortunately, they do not have this choice within a tank, and hence will be unable to escape.

Additionally, even if the betta consumes ghost shrimp, the fish will be unharmed.

Yes, betta may choke on them in certain circumstances, although this occurs incredibly seldom.

Some experts have started feeding their bettas ghost shrimp. This procedure works, and because ghost shrimp are inexpensive, it may be a perfect answer. Just keep in mind that betta fish require a complicated diet, and you must ensure they receive all the nutrients they require to be healthy and grow appropriately.

What Food Do Ghost Shrimp Consume?

Ghost shrimp are omnivores, which means they will consume practically everything on the floor. This category contains microbes, larvae, and, of course, algae. You may believe that feeding ghost shrimp is a difficult task.

In general, the ideal meals for ghost shrimp are:

  • Shrimp in brine
  • Algae\Insects
  • Pellet food for squid
  • Larvae of mosquito

Is Shrimp compatible with Betta?

Yes. The following are the three best dwarf shrimp species to maintain with your betta.

  • Phantom shrimp
  • Shrimp cherry
  • Shrimp amano

Maintaining ghost shrimp alongside betta fish

There are a few techniques to improve your odds of maintaining ghost shrimp successfully in a betta tank, including tank arrangement and nutrition. 

Configuration of the tank

It is generally suggested to have a minimum of a ten gallon (37.9 L) tank before introducing any other type of livestock to your betta fish. This will assist in increasing the physical space between your fish and shrimp, reducing the risk of their colliding during the day. If you have an extremely aggressive or ravenous betta fish, even the tiniest movement will pique their curiosity regardless of distance.

Ghost shrimp, as is, adore their hiding spots. Ghost shrimp will remain more concealed in densely planted aquariums with several hiding spots. Not only will plants contrast beautifully with your betta’s colors, but ghost shrimp may take refuge in regions that bettas cannot readily reach.


While this is not a proven strategy, ensuring that your betta fish receives a high-quality diet and a variety of items on a regular basis may help dissuade it from biting your ghost shrimp.

Bettas should be fed in tiny amounts three times a day.

While betta fish pellets are frequently available at neighborhood aquarium stores, bettas should have a varied diet that does not overlap excessively. A variety of live, frozen, and freeze-dried feeds, including brine shrimp, bloodworms, insect larvae, fish flakes, and pellets should be included. 

Live meals will pique your betta’s interest and may provide the necessary amount of enrichment to satiate your betta’s predatory impulses. If your betta is preoccupied with something else, your ghost shrimp may remain uneaten! Additionally, other high-quality feeds can help keep your betta satisfied for longer periods of time and less interested in attempting to eat other items in the tank.

However, it is necessary to keep in mind that bettas are prone to obesity. Due to the greater weight of their finnage, bettas with longer fins may have difficulty swimming off excess food, therefore it is critical to keep food quantities under check. Additionally, bettas are prone to constipation, which may generally be alleviated with time, salt, and/or other natural therapies.


Finding suitable tank mates for betta fish is a difficult undertaking that can never be guaranteed. Ghost shrimp and betta fish can coexist if the tank layout is optimized and the diet is consistent and of excellent quality. At the end of the day, selecting tank mates that work is mostly determined by the betta fish’s disposition; even if ghost shrimp have been housed with the betta for an extended period of time, this does not guarantee that the betta will never attempt to eat them over the tank’s lifetime.

How many ghost shrimp can a betta keep?

While ghost shrimp are tiny, it is critical to remember that they create a bioload that your tank must be capable of processing. Simultaneously, you’ll want a large bunch to ensure their safety in numbers; also, if your betta consumes one, you won’t be left with any ghost shrimp.

As a general rule, one ghost shrimp can be kept in every gallon (3.8 L) of water. However, this figure is highly dependent on the quantity of filtration in the system, as well as the number of plants growing. A reasonable starting point is 4-5 for a nanosystem.

Are betta fish capable of eating young shrimp?

Yes, if your ghost shrimp multiply, the offspring will be eaten by your betta fish. Unfortunately, this is unavoidable unless female shrimp are removed from the tank prior to spawning and housed in a separate breeding tank.

Baby shrimps are the ideal appetizer for bettas since they are easier to consume than adults.

However, if you’re fortunate, one or two may reach adulthood.


In this article, we understood the relationship between Betta fish and Ghost shrimp. We also discussed their requirements and explained if they can be set up together in a community tank.

If you have any thoughts or doubts, feel free to drop us a comment below!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Can betta fish live with Ghost shrimp?

How many ghost shrimp can a betta keep?

To remain happy and healthy, ghost shrimp require the company of other ghost shrimp.

Two to four ghost shrimp are an excellent number in a betta aquarium. Adult ghost shrimp reproduce rapidly, and you want to avoid a population explosion, which may easily occur if your tank is overstocked with shrimp.

Are ghost shrimps aggressive?

They may attempt to squeeze, but unless they are fairly large, it will cause little pain. Shrimp are scavengers, and as such, they scrutinize everything new that enters the water in search of food. They will attempt to feed on your dead skin, which just cleanses your skin.

Are ghost shrimp capable of cleaning aquariums?

However, ghost shrimp can make life a little bit simpler in an aquarium. These shrimp are excellent scavengers, clearing out any uneaten food and reducing algae levels. Their cleaning expertise will ensure that the tank remains spotless.

How come ghost shrimp are so inexpensive?

Ghost shrimps are significantly less expensive than Amano shrimps due to their ease of raising and maintenance. When handled improperly, ghost shrimps may live for just a few months. According to studies, the majority of ghost shrimps have a survival rate of 40%.

Can ghost shrimp survive on their own?

Yes, ghost shrimp can survive on their own. Ghost shrimp do not require group living and may survive on their own. Simply ensure that it has a enough supply of water to swim in.


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