Is it possible that a Ghost Shrimp would be attacking a Glofish? Pet of the Month
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Mar 19, 2017
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My mum has a 10 Gallon Glofish tank with two Green Glofish Tetras, a Goldfish and two very tiny Otos.
There is also one of two Ghost Shrimp that were egg laden when we bought a batch to be Eel food, and so we let her live in my mum's tank.
She has a lot of personality and is the hardest working shrimp I've seen - She alone keeps the gravel spotless. Because of this, she gets to avoid Sibbi's unending hunger.
A Get-Out-of-Death Free card, if you will.
However... She is the reason I'm posting - I think.
I noticed that one of the Glofish had marks on it's side and there isn't anything in the tank it really could have injured itself on - Everything in the tank is either soft or smooth/rounded.

Now, normally I wouldn't have blamed a Ghost Shrimp - But she has a bit going against her.
She had already killed the other egg laden shrimp after a dispute over some food. After some time I noticed two shrimplets who were too old to have been her babies, and must have somehow came with the adults... And well, It wasn't long before we saw her kill and eat them, too. Both of those things are pretty normal...
But, I had never thought of something until now - Before we had the Glofish, we had a mysterious Neon Tetra die out in that same tank.

After we put her in it.

They were always gutted and on the filter, so naturally we thought they got sick, died and the bodies got sucked onto the filter and then she ate them. That's just what shrimp do.
But. Thinking about it... They weren't really eaten.

Just cut open along their stomach and sides, usually missing all fins.

It's not the best evidence.. But it is a little strange, don't you think?
I'm thinking that perhaps she is a different type of shrimp as her claws are massive for a Ghost Shrimp... However she herself isn't that large. She's full-grown Ghost size and not getting bigger.
I have no way of getting a picture atm, but I can say a few things I suppose.
She has very large claws for a Ghost shrimp, but her arms aren't beefy like a Macro.
Her antennae are longer than average.
She has very little colour to her at all - only two orange specks on her tail.
She's very active and even begs for bloodworms when I walk by.

Worse comes to worse and she ends up being the culprit -- I won't feel too bad feeding her to Sibbi~
By the way, as I said - This is my mum's tank and I've already tried to get her to treat the fish properly.
I know Goldfish, Tetras and Otos have completely different needs.
She won't listen to me.
This is begining to sound suspiciously like a Macrobrachium, even though you already mention you do not think it is.

I wonder if you can post a picture of this shrimp?
A nice clear picture, not asy I know but it may help. Or you could search online and see if you can find any shrimps that matches what is in your mum's tank.

The main identifying feature between a macro and a ghost shrimp, is usually the long extended forearm with fairly large pincers compared to the ghost.

Below two pictures for comparision - on left is Ghost Shrimp and on right is the macrobrachium, you can easily see the difference in the length of the forearm and pincers.

Ghost Shrimp.jpg
Machrobrachium Shrimp.jpg

Now there is another shrimp that look similar to these two above and thats the Amano shrimps, they can be aggressive but usually when they are juveniles nearing adults, they grow to about 2 to 2.5 inches. I have 4 of these in my tank but only in a 5 gal separated from my main fish tanks as I suspected they may have been attacking my Celestial Pearl Danios, but never confirmed or had proof so i did this as better safe than sorry as CPD's makes expensive snacks for amanos :lol:

Amano Shrimp.jpg

Now these three shrimps tend to be the most common types that are sold in most LFS and to the unitiated all look pretty much the same but there are small differences, amanos have sort of spot markings and have a bigger built body, macros have long pincers and the ghost is usually smaller and slender than the others but easily confusing.

If you can see if any of those are most similar to what is that tank or take a picture of your own and upload onto here, then we'll see if we can help any further.

BTW completely correct in saying goldfish, tetras and otos all have differing needs and requirements, keep trying to educate her in the finer ways of fishkeeping and hopefully she will see what you mean....eventually. I know how difficult is it in that sort of situation.

Do note, none of these pictures are my own, have taken from websites as examples to show the differences is all.
If you can see if any of those are most similar to what is that tank or take a picture of your own and upload onto here, then we'll see if we can help any further.

Personally, she looks more like a normal Ghostie to me... But I don't really know anything about shrimp!
Eels and Knifefish are more my thing. Hence why she was gonna be food in the first place.

I was able to get some (really bad) pictures of her though.

The crocodile head does have exposed teeth in it, but they're very dull and the Glofish don't go in it anyway. It's more for the Otos and Mystery Snail.
Those pics makes it a tough call.

Though I can say, its not an amano, 90% sure of that.

Judging by the saddle colour on second pic I would have called it Ghost Shrimp.

But the first pic, pretty much impossible, though if you asked me to guess, by the colour of the shrimp I would have called it amano :lol:

Pity the second pic does not show clearly the forearms and pincer any clearer, though I know from personal experience its hard to take close up pics of shrimps sometimes.

Hmm, your call as to whether to use this shrimp as food to Sibbi, just to be sure or give it another try re taking another pic tomorrow or something.

Its possible of course it may have not been the shrimp at all, could have been one of the other tankmates that ate the teta and glofish or even it was a disease of sorts.

Pretty hard to determine though as Ghost shrimps are usually one the easiest shrimps to go by, second to Cherry shrimps imho.
Its possible of course it may have not been the shrimp at all, could have been one of the other tankmates that ate the teta and glofish or even it was a disease of sorts

You're actually right.
It looks like the other Glofish may have almost gotten the shrimp blamed!
While having another go at getting a pic, I saw them get into a pretty nasty fight!
Which is strange, because their tank is in the sitting room and no one in the house has seen them fight before...
This is VERY new behaviour for them!
The injured one seems to have initiated the fight, swimming up to the other and flaring out their fins aggressively.
He got quite a thrashing and they won't school together now. The healthy Glofish is schooling with the goldfish.
The injured one is hiding behind the filter... There isn't a spare tank to put them in, only a bucket which would probably stress them to death.

I feel silly now. With how thin the scrapes were, I thought it only could have been the shrimp!
Guess I have a new question -- What to do now? Take back the one who was pestering and is now hurt?
However, I'd assume the shop would just off them considering the fact they aren't as visually appealing any more... Dorsal fin is a bit funky and gashes in the scales.
My ghost shrimp killed one of my corys and a few of my female guppies.

I fed mine to Oscar.

The other day I seen one of my crs with a mollie fry.

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