Black Tiger Shrimp

Caridina cantonensis Black Tiger shrimp


Water parameters

pH
6.5 - 8.0
GH
4 - 10
KH
1 - 8
TDS
130 - 250
Temperature
20 - 25 °C
68 - 77 °F
5.5 8.5
4 15
0 15
80 300
15 30

Facts


Difficulty level
Easy

Lifespan
1 - 2 years

Origin
Taiwan

Adult size
30 mm / 1.2 inches

Black Tiger shrimp originate from Taiwan, and are very similar to their Orange Eye Blue Tiger cousins but much darker in colour.

An adult can grow to be around 3 cm (1.2 inches) in size.

Grades

A high grade Black Tiger will have a very deep black shell that's a fairly solid consistency. Glowing orange eyes are another mark of a higher grade, the brighter the better.

Lower grades will have a more translucent body or patchy colouring. The black shell might appear more like a very dark blue instead, likewise for their legs too. The eye colour may be closer to brown than a vibrant orange as well.

Care

Despite being in the Caridina species, the Black Tiger is very hardy and will happily tolerate a relatively large parameter range. They can usually be expected to live for between 1-2 years in a healthy tank.

You can confidently introduce any of the different colour Neocaridina shrimp, like Red Cherry, to have a brilliant contrast. Similarly, you could also introduce other Caridina morphs and try to breed interesting hybrids of baby shrimp.

Black Tiger shrimp do not require an aquarium heater unless you live somewhere that gets very cold. As long as your room stays roughly between 20-25 °C (68-77 °F) they should be perfectly happy.

A general rule for freshwater dwarf shrimp is to have a minimum tank size of 5 gallons (19 liters), but 10 gallons (38 liters) and larger is recommended.

Diet

Most freshwater dwarf shrimp will eat the same types of foods. They'll spend the vast majority of their time moving around the aquarium in search of tiny bits of food like biofilm and algae, which can grow on almost any surface. If your tank is mature and heavily planted, they'll probably have plenty of natural food to eat already.

If you're not sure they're getting enough to eat, there are lots of different foods for your shrimp like algae wafers, bee pollen, shrimp pellets, blanched vegetables, etc.

Giving your shrimp a variety of different foods will make it more likely they're getting all the nutrients they need to thrive.

Tank mates

A major benefit of the wide ranging water parameters required for these shrimp is that it allows for a huge range of other shrimp to share the same tank.

Try the Shrimp Suggester

Find the ideal water parameters and compatible tank mates for Black Tiger shrimp.

It's sometimes possible to keep smaller fish like Neon Tetras in a shrimp tank. There is a risk that the fish will see your shrimp as food however, so you should make sure they've got plenty of hiding places if you wanted to try this. The risk of being eaten is much higher for baby shrimp, so if you're planning to breed your shrimp it's highly recommended not to have any fish in the same tank.

Breeding

Variants of the Caridina Tiger shrimp are a popular choice for breeding with other non-tiger types.

Black Tigers are a good choice for breeders trying to breed new morphs with orange eyes. Black Tigers themselves are essentially just Orange Eye Blue Tigers that have been bred to have even dark colours over time.

You can never be sure what you'll get when it comes to breeding hybrids but adding Tiger genes can cause some unique and interesting variations.

If you're trying to start up a colony, you can read our guide on how to breed shrimp for tips and suggestions.

Eyesight

The orange eye colour is believed to be caused by a low amount of something called rhodopsin, a pigment usually present in the rods of the eye. If the eye's rods have a low number of these photoreceptor proteins it could lead to reduced vision and possibly even blindness.

You will find multiple mentions in forums online about OEBTs seeming less afraid than other types, such as not running away when putting a hand in the tank near them. It's much more likely that the orange eyes of the shrimp really have bad vision.