Cherry Shrimp is one of the top-ranked invertebrate species to most aquarium hobbyists and pro owners. And why shouldn’t they? These shrimps have a vibrant red color and are incredibly gentle that makes them an immediate attraction to any fish tank or aquarium.

However, cherry shrimps need good care, part of which depends on the aquarium set up. Therefore, when people set up the cherry shrimp aquarium, they often ask a question, “Do cherry shrimp need a filter?”

To put it simply- cherry shrimps are in the need of a filter in the aquarium, likewise any fish species.

Sounds surprising and awkward, right?

Well, the cherry shrimp tank won’t require a filter if you can maintain the tank interior healthy and continue a suitable biological filtration.

Sadly, maintaining biological filtration is challenging. Hence, most shrimp owners prefer using a filtration system for the tank.

And today, we are going to effectively discuss, when you need a filer for cherry shrimp and when not. Also, we will see the functions of a filter and suggest to improve the filtration system. Furthermore, we will also discuss some critical aspects of the cherry shrimp aquarium since the filtration is linked with it.

What Is a Filter?

A filter is an integral part of the cherry shrimp and any other fish aquarium. It effectively removes soluble and physical waste and residue from the aquarium and eases out the maintenance procedure. Since aquarium and tanks are small, they are incapable of performing the natural and environmental happenings inside the container for an aqua ecology.

Hence, filters help the small aqua ecology grow and develop within the aquarium.

Are Filters Essential for Cherry Shrimp?


Do CHerry Shrimp Need A FilterNow, let’s get to the main point- do red cherry shrimp really need a filter?

The answer is- they don’t need and also do need (yes, both) regular filters. Mostly, filters that help biological aspects are necessary for cherry shrimps.

The implications are that, unless your shrimp aquarium is heavily planted cherry shrimp won’t survive without a filter. And even if they live somehow without a filter, they will less likely to grow with full potential.

Therefore, despite peoples’ misconception of cherry shrimps not needing a filter, you must throw the idea into dustbin. For proper bio-filtration a quality filter in the cherry shrimp tank is a must.

Science Direct refers to biofiltration to a process of accumulating necessary microorganisms within the aqua system using at least one organism. It cycles the water to ensure its safe for your loving cherry.

The process includes-

  • Breaking down waste into ammonia
  • Ammonia then converts into nitrites
  • Nitrites finally turn into soluble nitrates that air can take away.

So, if you somehow can manage the conversion of waste into nitrates within the tank for cherry shrimp, you won’t require any additional filter.

Nonetheless, without proper biological filtration, the aquarium is heavily limited in numbers of various species.

Thus, for cherry shrimp safety and increasing fish and shrimp species within the same tank, you need to get assistance from the biological filtration.

Benefits of Using Filters in Aquarium:

Shrimp and fish owners use a filter to remove harmful components from the aquarium to safeguard the pets. These harmful elements may include-

  • Organic decay
  • Uneaten food items
  • Fish excrement
  • Harmful chemical
  • Floating items

Too much presence of these elements will potentially harm the cherry shrimps. Hence, using a filter will bring you the following benefits-

  • Biological filtration removes debris such as ammonia and nitrites from the aquarium to keep the water clean and safe.
  • Proper filtration creates surface agitation that increases the amount of oxygen within the tank or aquarium.
  • It also boosts the growth of useful bacteria for shrimps and fishes.

You might be wondering at this point that why we are talking about biological filtration only, and it’s valid. However, we remind you that the chemical filtration system is to be used with a fish-doctors suggestion or when it is necessary.

Also, you should know that small vases or containers (many homeowners use these) won’t be able to accommodate a proper filtration. For this, you should change the water regularly to help the biological filtration.

Types of Filtration System for Shrimp Aquarium:

So, to this point, here what we have found for the necessity of filtration –

A filtration system within the aquarium helps to keep the aquarium water clean and healthy. It also increases the oxygen level within the aquarium.

Now that we know why the filtration system is essential for cherry shrimp and other species within the tank, you may be interested to see the type of filtration process. Am I right?

So, here’s the answer-

  1. Biological filtration
  2. Chemical filtration
  3. Mechanical filtration

Since we have already described the biological filtration system, we won’t both you with the same thing once again. Henceforth, let’s look at the other two types of the filtration process.

  • Chemical filtration: It refers to a process of actively removing dissolved water wastage from the aquarium. It uses chemical additives from where it gets the name. Mostly, people will use activated charcoal for the procedure.
  • Mechanical filtration: As the name indicates, the process includes machinery or mechanical gears to remove water wastage effectively. You need to replace the filter once every two to three weeks to get the highest benefit.

Choosing Filter for Cherry Shrimp Aquarium

There are simply limitless alternatives when it comes to choosing the best filters for your cherry shrimp aquarium. These are-

Sponge filter:

The reason to put sponge filters into the first position is its affordability and safety assurance for red cherry shrimp. Sponge filters through mechanical filtration procedure remove water debris from the aquarium. The name comes since the water cleaning process uses sponge for it.

Another advantage of the filter is that it requires the least maintenance. You will only need to rinse and squeeze the sponge to filter the aquarium water.

Canister filter:

Canister filters are preferable for large fish tanks and red cherry shrimp aquarium. Shrimp hobbyists and owners love canister filters for its immense filtering capacity and the unique aesthetics it offers.

It is a combo of a pump, lid, and a large bucket. You can put the filtering component in the bucket. Eventually, the filter filled bucket will continue filtration until it sunk to level zero. But the tradeoff is that the maintenance of canister filters is often complicated and time-consuming.

Also, the combination of multiple parts means, if one component is damaged or broken, you may need to replace the whole system. It can be costly. Additionally, it is an expensive alternative for filtration of the shrimp tank.

Note: In case you purchase a canister filter, use the sponge to prefill the system so that red cherry shrimps don’t accidentally get sucked within the tubes.

Box filters:

Frequently known as internal filters, box filters are considered to be the earliest filtration system for fish and shrimp aquarium. You can use endless filters within the box and give the cherry shrimp healthy water.

Also, thanks to the compactness of the filter, owners often use it to boost the shrimp reproduction in the breeding tank and treat a sick shrimp in the quarantine. These are very cheap but at present aren’t commonly found in the market. You may need to order one especially.

Diatomic filters:

A diatomic filter is the most beneficial when you need to remove the smallest particles from a shrimp tank with 100% accuracy. Likewise, the pool filtering mechanism, diatomic filter, use a pump to pass the water through multiple layers of diatomaceous earth filters.

As the water passes the filter, it quickly becomes pure. However, you will only need these kinds of filtration when the aquarium asks for fine purification.

Hang-on Bock filters:

Sometimes also known as merely HOB or power filter, it is the best filtration system that you can use for a red cherry shrimp tank. It is a combination of chemical, mechanical, and essential biological filtration.

Both the maintenance and price of the filter is supportive to shrimp owners. However, you should use a pre-filter sponge to safeguard the filter tubes for the shrimps.

Can I Replace Shrimp Tank Water Instead of Using A Filter?

Although many shrimpers might recommend that you can regularly replace aquarium water instead of investing in a filter, we discourage it.

To be frank, replacing fish tank water in place of a proper biological filtration is an inferior way to treat the pet.

When you don’t use a filter, you need to continually remove the shrimp from the regular one to a small one and from the small one to the proper tank for water replacing purpose. It increases anxiety and stress in the shrimp. So, you will observe a lesser growth rate and breeding. Also, it harms their health.

On the contrary, regular use of biofiltration allows you to keep the fish in the same tank for a long-long period. Also, it treats the water to keep it clean and increase the oxygen level. Both are good for red cherry shrimp health and vibrant color.

However, you should also sue chemical and mechanical filters from time to time to give the shrimp residence an exceptional cleaning.

Furthermore, using filters will reduce your work since it eliminates the necessity of regularly replacing the tank water. However, when you clean the screen and its cartridge, follow the rule-

Use chlorine-free water since chlorine contamination can be potentially harmful to shrimps; at worst, you might lose the shrimp.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Will shrimp survive without a filter?

Well, shrimps can survive in a tank without filters but not without filtrations. It means if your aquarium has a good proportion of plants, these will act as a biological filtration to keep the water neat and clean. Thus, you won’t require to install any filters additionally.

  1. Do I need to clean the shrimp water tank even with a filter?

Yes, once in two to three weeks, you must clean the tank. You should focus on the corners where fungus and algae are most likely to grow. Also, if you have a high-density of shrimps within the container, you may require more frequent cleaning of the aquarium.

  1. Will ghost shrimp too need a filter?

Ghose shrimps are known to keep themselves clean and hygienic. Still, we recommend you to use a biofiltration system to boost water hygiene and help the ghost shrimp reduce its self-cleaning time.

The Bottom Line

This is right ardently from the middle of a bat- a filtration system boosts the red cherry shrimp water tank hygiene. Therefore, using a biological filtration for the cherry shrimp aquarium is suggested.

Nonetheless, the myth that shrimps die without a proper filter arrangement isn’t true. The inclusion of the filter will help you maintain the tank environment better. Also, it reduces your workload of changing the tank water every other day.

Finally, take note that while you will use the biological filtration mostly, sometimes, you should replace it with mechanical and chemical filters for fine-tuning if the shrimp tank.

Good luck and happy shrimp keeping!

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