There is no doubt about the essential benefits that plants bring to any aquarium, including their aesthetic function and ability to keep the tank clean, oxygenate the water, and maintain the pH balance. Also, for freshwater shrimp aquariums, having plants is a must. Ideal live aquarium plants provide an abundant source of food as well as plenty of space for shrimp to explore or hide from predators. Thanks to the cover of these plants, shrimp will feel safe and live better.
One thing to keep in mind is to always quarantine plants before adding them to your shrimp tank to prevent the introduction of harmful species. So, which plants are considered the best choice for a freshwater shrimp tank? Let’s go through the top 5 common options that shrimp love the most. The significant part is that these plants don’t require special water conditions but can adapt to the shrimp’s preferable parameters!
Aquatic moss, especially Java Moss, is considered the best plant for a shrimp tank by many aquarists. Besides, there are so many kinds of Aquatic moss that you can introduce into your freshwater shrimp tank, such as Christmas Moss, Flame Moss, etc. (Learn more “The Best Moss for Freshwater Shrimp”)
This plant is well known for its ease of care and can fit in any tank size, making it one of the ideal aquarium plants for beginners. This plant can grow well with little care or maintenance, quickly become a dense carpet area and offer a perfect playground for your shrimp. Baby shrimp can feel safe while hiding under this shelter.
Most moss can grow without substrate, so feel free to leave it floating on the water’s surface. Another option is to attach it to a small rock or driftwood using plant glue to create a beautiful aquascape.
2. Java Fern
The Java Fern is a popular plant for any aquarium that make your tank more diverse, and the shrimp tanks are not excluded. Its large and unique leaves provide shrimp with a great hiding place. The surface of these broad leaves also produces microorganisms for your shrimp. At the same time, Java Fern is a very hardy plant that can tolerate many different water conditions, so you just need to focus on your shrimp’s parameters requirement, and this plant can follow.
When introducing this plant to the aquarium, it is crucial to attach its rhizome using rocks or driftwood and keep the light reaching its rhizome instead of covering it in the substrate. This plant absorbs nutrition from the water, therefore, adding liquid fertilizer can help to promote its growth. Because of its slow development, pruning and trimming regularly is not necessary.
The Anubias is an excellent plant to add to your shrimp tank. Their wide and sturdy leaves look stunning and create a large coverage area for your shrimp. Anubias is famous for the ability to grow algae on their leaves which is one of the favourite food for your shrimp, especially Amano Shrimp. Several types of this plant can be found easily in stores, making it able to be present in any size of tank.
This plant is free of special attention in terms of care. Being one of the hardiest freshwater aquatic plants, this plant can survive in nearly any water quality or environment. The coarse leaves of Anubias protect themselves from damage during maintenance and aggressive creatures. Like Java Ferns, this plant is a rhizome plant and does not need substrate to thrive. For that reason, burying it deep in a substrate will cause the rhizome to rot and the plant itself to die. It’s better to attach them to driftwood or another heavy ornament for healthy growth.
4. Monte Carlo
The Monte Carlo plant is another low-growing aquatic plant that is great for freshwater shrimp aquariums. With bright green and small leaves gathering into the carpet, Monte Carlo is an ideal foreground plant for shrimp to thrive. This carpet plant also adds a gorgeous look to your tank as well. Monte Carlo comes in 2 types, Tissue culture plants or pot plants.
Planting Monte Carlo is relatively easy. The parameter should be kept at a medium level. The most important is about choosing a suitable substrate. Since the roots are quite small, sand or fine gravel can help anchor the roots tightly. This small plant can overgrow in optimal conditions, so spend some time pruning and trimming to keep it in the desired form.
5. Red Root Floater
This stunning floater is well-known for its remarkable red roots. The roots are submerged, absorb nitrates from the water, and help maintain the optimal water parameters. While the top of the red root floaters on the surface, providing shade and reducing the light that comes through the tank, encouraging the shy shrimp to come out of hiding places. Species have a natural habitat feeling and become more comfortable below their coverage, so they feel safe enough to come out of shelters and play around the tank.
These floaters can live well in a wide range of growing environments and are easy to care for. As a floating plant, this plant also doesn’t require any substrate to develop. Because of this fast-growing habit, this plant can occasionally block the light of other creatures below and requires periodic pruning and trimming to remove this expansion.