Cherry shrimp, or more accurately known as red cherry shrimp is a popular invertebrate aquarium pet, thanks to its vibrant red color. To speak the truth, if you have a lush green filled aquarium, the redness of cherry shrimp will work as a cherry in the pie.

With such beauty, red cherry shrimp askes extensive care. Maintaining the aquarium water temperature is one of them. For that, a lot of people flaunt questions to me, “Do cherry shrimp need a heater?” Well, it has a mixed bag of an answer-

Sometimes cherry shrimp will need a heater, and sometimes they won’t.

So, when does a cherry shrimp need a heater, and when not? Also, what happens if you don’t provide a heater at all?

And finally, do other shrimps need a heater or not?

To get a proper answer to the questions, read the following sections.

Do cherry shrimp need a heater

Do Cherry Shrimp Need A Heater

Whether or not your cherry shrimps need a heater in the aquarium will largely depend on the room temperature you keep the aquarium. Likewise, most shrimps and vertebrae, cherry shrimps also thrive in a moderate temperature between 20°C to 22°C (68°F-72°F).

Also, cherry shrimps belong to the cold blooded invertebrate species. So, a little fluctuation in the water temperature affects them greatly since these are unable to control body temperature according to the external necessity.


So, the necessity of a heater for red cherry shrimp will depend on whether you can manage the room temperature at an optimal level or not.

But before you seek the answer to the following question, knowing the optimal temperature range for the most popular shrimp breeds will help you further in the cause.

Shrimp TypesOptimal temperature
Caridina16°C to 25°C
Neocaridina14°C to 29°C
Ghost Shrimp18°C to 29°C
Vampire Shrimp24°C to 30°C

Did you notice the table? Caridina or red cherry shrimp feels comfortable at 16°C to 25°C. In comparison, the most optimal temperature for the species is 22°C.

So, what implication do you get from it?

Look closely –

In most homes, even with ACs on or dehumidifier running, the temperature remains around 20°C. So, your red cherry shrimp should feel comfortable with it.

But there is a twist.

If you like to breed the shrimp, you will probably need a higher aquarium temperature. For this, you should equip with a proper heater.

Cherry shrimp’s molting behavior also depends on the water temperature of your tank.

But even a heater has its advantages and disadvantages that you need to know (available in the following section). Also, you should choose the right heater for the purpose.

But before that, take a look at the following question.

Why is the temperature maintenance necessary for red cherry shrimp?

I have already mentioned that red cherry shrimps belong to coldblooded vertebrae species. Hence, they entirely depend on the external temperature.

However, every shrimp has a substantial optimal temperature range. When they live in the wild, the temperature may vary slightly, especially during the day and night. So, these shrimps are adapted with the temperature shifts.

Thus, at average room temperature, red cherry shrimp will feel at home. But when it comes to larva or newborn little shrimps, these have the least control over their body temperature.

Thus, a minimum change in temperature can have serious consequences. Therefore, for little shrimps, you will need a heater in most cases.

Also, your purpose of petting red cherry shrimp will have an impact on the use of the heater in the shrimp aquarium.

So, let’s see it.

Purpose of Your Red Cherry Shrimp Aquarium

When it comes to the shrimp aquarium goal, there are two alternatives to choose from for you. It will also determine the necessity of a heater.

Red cherry shrimp breeding:

Several owners breed their shrimp for fun and earn profit as an alternative. If you are one of the breed teams, keeping the shrimp at a higher temperature will be beneficial. In fact, a recent study on the effect of temperature on the growth and reproduction of red cherry shrimp found that temperature controls the maturity of the male and female shrimp.

Consequently, it affects breeding. It happens because higher temperature increases the metabolism rate in a shrimp. Ultimately it attains maturity level faster and breeds quicker. However, the higher temperature reduces the shrimp lifespan severely.

Nonetheless, for breeding, you need a higher room or tank temperature (although risky). For this, you will require a heater.

But before you use a heater and increase the water temperature, keep an eye on the following points.

  1. Below 25°C, female shrimps attain sexual maturity a bit slowly.
  2. Female shrimps maturing and mating over 32°C lost almost 90% of their eggs.
  3. At 28°C, the breeding happens to yield the best result.

Community aquarium or tank:

When you keep red cherry shrimp in a community tank, probably an external heater isn’t necessary. It happens because your room temperature is probably already in the optimal range. However, during the winter, when heat shrinks below zero, you might need a tank heater unless you have home or room heating gear ready to tackle the room condition.

However, before you choose a heater for your favorite red cherry shrimp, knowing its Pros and Cons will be beneficial for you.

Pros of using a tank heater:

  1. When you install the right heater in the shrimp tank, it will stable the tank temperature. So, the shrimp will enjoy cozy surroundings and live happily.
  2. Higher temperatures will boost the metabolism and reproduction system.
  3. With a heater, you can control the temperature to mimic the external season changes. In this way, you can help the shrimp and fish get a feel of their natural habitat.

Cons of using a tank heater:

  1. Installing a heater for multiple tanks can be expensive. Instead, stabling the room temperature will be a less expensive way for you.
  2. Sometimes due to various reasons, a heater can accidentally breakdown. The chances are high that a broken heater will be the cause of the death of several shrimps (since these have minimal protection).
  3. A heater takes up considerable space in the tank or aquarium. So, it leaves less space for the shrimp to roam around. Also, you get less space to decorate the aquarium.

Types of Heater You Can Choose for Red Cherry Shrimp:

When it comes to effectively selecting the best heater for fish and shrimp, there are multiple alternatives in the market. The most useful ones are described below-

Immersible and submersible heaters:

These are the most common fish tank heaters you will find ardently. Frequently, these have a metal, plastic, or glass made tube. Both these heaters are inexpensive and easy to install.

Although both immersible and submersible heaters may look identical, they function very differently.

  • Submersible heaters are entirely waterproofed, and so, you can place the whole system underneath the water. However, immersible heaters aren’t waterproof. Thus, the control needs to be situated above the waterline.
  • An immersible heater can only be installed in a vertical position. On the contrary, submersible heaters are supportive of both horizontal and vertical installation.

Substrate tanks heater:

As the name suggests, you can set up the heater underneath your tank substrate.

Don’t know what a tank substrate is?

Here’s the answer- a tank substrate is an accumulation of the materials that you use at the fish tank or aquarium bottom.

Since it remains underneath the tank materials, it stays out of sight. So, it doesn’t affect the aquarium aesthetics and doesn’t eat up any additional space. But the prominent trade-off is that you will need to dismantle a large portion of the tank in case any problem occurs with the heater.

 Filter heater:

A filter heater is an improved version of a submersible fish tank. It is a perfect combo of the easy access and aesthetic that respectively comes from the immersible and submersible tanks.

However, these are a bit highly priced, and so, many of you might not afford them.


Also, a heater is useful for the cherry shrimp reproduction system. However, while you install a heater, make sure that the tank doesn’t heat up more than the optimal range. Lastly, depending on your aquarium style and space, choose the right heater.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are heaters safe for shrimps and fishes?

In a healthy state, heaters are safe for shrimps and fishes since these are built with high-quality glass, plastic, or metal materials. However, if these are broken accidentally, the scenario is somewhat sorrowful. You will be saddened to notice the corpse of your shrimps and fishes. So, make sure the heater remains under premium safety.

What happens if the tank temperature is too hot?

When the tank water temperature exceeds the shrimp’s comfort zone, it will feel stressed and lose appetite. At worst, shrimps will start dying. So, be careful about it.

The Bottom Line

During the winter days, when temperature shrinks down close or below zero degrees, maintaining the shrimp aquarium temperature will be challenging. At these times, the cherry shrimp need a heater for a healthy living.

Also, a heater is useful for the cherry shrimp reproduction system. However, while you install a heater, make sure that the tank doesn’t heat up more than the optimal range. Lastly, depending on your aquarium style and space, choose the right heater.

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