Baby Cherry Shrimp Care 101: Food, Size & Growth Rate is supported by our readers. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a commission.

Known by the name of Neocaridina davidi in the scientific world, baby cherry shrimps are tiny and delicate aquarium species. 

The name “cherry” can give you the impression of these creatures being strictly red in color, but that is certainly not the case. They are found in various shades, such as orange, yellow, green, blue, etc., but the red variant is hands-down the most popular pick among aquarists. 

Let’s get to know this amazing species in detail!

What Does A Baby Cherry Shrimp Look Like?

Baby Cherry Shrimp Grow fast
Baby Cherry Shrimp Grow Fast

Baby cherry shrimps are quite small and look like white worms at first glance since they are always swimming around at lightning speed. But on a closer look, you’ll be able to see they are colorless miniature variants of full-grown red cherry shrimps. 

Furthermore, they have distinguishable black spots and like to hang out on the glass. They have a fast-paced growth, and once they reach their full size, their color changes and becomes noticeably red. 

How Big Are Baby Cherry Shrimp?

These colorless, almost clear shrimps are as tiny as rice grains and are two to four millimeters in length. Some might even be five millimeters long, but such instances are rare. 

The average size is only 2.3 millimeters, and it’s safe to say that these shrimplets are really tiny and difficult to spot and identify. You’ll have to look closely to recognize them; the iconic black spots serve as good identifiers. 

What Do Baby Cherry Shrimp Eat?

Biofilm and algae are the primary food source for baby cherry shrimp, so you need to have them in a reasonable amount in your fish tank. That’s a fairly low-effort task since both these materials grow independently and don’t need any additional contribution. 

So, next time you clean your tank glass of algae, just leave one side unscratched (two if you have multiple shrimps), and that’s it. Your shrimps will feed on their own. 

However, we recommend noting the type of algae growing in your aquarium because these creatures are picky on that front. They won’t eat thread, hard spot, or hair algae. 

Baby Cherry Shrimp Care

Cherry shrimps are fragile beings, and babies are even more delicate to look after. You’ll have to take a little extra care while dealing with them. 

Water Parameters

These red creatures thrive only in a specific range of water conditions and can get stressed if they aren’t set right. The ideal parameters are:

  • Temperature – 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit
  • pH – 6.5 to 7.5
  • KH – one to four ppm
  • GH – six to eight ppm
  • TDS – 150 to 250 ppm 

Plants And Hiding Places

A few good plant species when it comes to setting hiding places in a shrimp tank include Indian Almond Leaves and Cholla Wood. The latter has a perforated surface with lots of holes on it, which allow the babies to hide and eat algae at the same time. 

Similarly, Indian Almond Leaves also provide a lot of surface area for the algae to grow. Moreover, they secrete a leach material that is quite beneficial for baby cherry shrimps. 

Sponge Filters

There is always a possibility of your shrimps being sucked back in the filter and dying. In order to prevent that, you must install sponge filters in your tank. They are better than the hang-on ones as you wouldn’t need any additional modifications on the inlet pipe. The water will get cleaned without harming the baby shrimps. 

Maintain Good Water Quality

As we already mentioned, water parameters play an instrumental role in determining the life quality of your shrimps. Adults can still withstand unfavorable conditions to an extent, but babies cannot. Maintain a healthy temperature and routinely clean the tank if you want your little friends to see the dawn of adulthood and stick around for long. 

Why Do My Baby Cherry Shrimp Keep Dying?

If your baby cherry shrimps have been dying lately, it might be because of the following reasons:

  • Too many or too hostile tank mates (barbs, serpea, mollies, etc.)
  • Unsuitable water parameters, such as skewed water temperature or acidic pH
  • Calcium deficiency in water
  • Abrupt and unfavorable changes in the surroundings

Observe your fish tank for the above-mentioned features, try to identify the culprit, and make the necessary changes. 


Will Cherry Shrimp Eat Their Babies?

Cherry shrimp eggs are attached to the females during the early development stage, so they don’t eat them. But when the eggs get detached, it is pretty common to see these devils gobble down their own babies. That is just their survival instinct in play. They also tend to abandon their eggs after detecting danger from predators. 

How Fast Do Baby Cherry Shrimp Grow?

Cherry shrimps have a small life cycle and live for only one to two years. They attain the juvenile stage in 60 days and grow into full-size adults 15 days later. They are initially colorless and slowly turn red as they reach adulthood.

How Long Do Baby Cherry Shrimp Take To Molt?

Baby cherry shrimps generally molt every one to two weeks, but it majorly depends on how fast they are growing. The growth rate decreases eventually, and the molting drops down to only once in three weeks or a month. It is essential to maintain a healthy environment during the molting period and prevent sudden changes at every cost. 

How Many Babies Do Cherry Shrimp Have At A Time?

This species produces a moderate brood in the breeding period. The female cherry shrimps can carry 20 to 30 eggs, which roughly take two to three weeks to hatch. Their eggs are generally yellow or green in color, depending on the shade of the saddle. 


Baby Cherry shrimps are omnivore species that are a delight to have in your aquarium if you aren’t looking for a long-term companion. 

They are small species that need a little extra attention, but apart from that, they can be a good addition to your fish tank. That’s about it for our article. We’ll see you next time!

Was this article helpful?
Jeff Colt

Jeff Colt

Hello, I'm Jeff- an aquarium enthusiast with over 25 years of experience caring for a wide array of tropical fish, including koi, goldfish bettas, cichlids and more! For me: Aquariums are like jello - there's always room for more!

1 thought on “Baby Cherry Shrimp Care 101: Food, Size & Growth Rate”

Leave a Comment