One of the most popular and easiest to breed shrimps in the saltwater aquarium trade is the Stenopus hispidus, or more commonly known as Banded Coral shrimp, Banded Boxer Shrimp, or Boxing shrimp. The wide availability of this shrimp and the generally very affordable price can be attributed to its vast natural distribution, which includes all tropical seas.
Stenopus Hispidus Shrimp Caresheet
|Size:||up to 2 inches (5 cm)|
|Color:||White with red stripes (blueish patches in females)|
|Behavior:||Aggressive towards other shrimp|
|Aquarium:||20+ gallons (100+ liters) minimum|
|Water:||pH of 8.0-8.4, saltwater|
Banded Coral shrimp main characteristics and behavior
The Stenopus hispidus is white with distinct red bands on its body and three pairs of claws, it has long and flowing white antennae. The third pair of claws is considerably oversized compared to the others (which give it the position of “boxer” hence the name). It features rather powerful tongs. The maximum length for the species is about 7 centimeters (not counting the antennae), although most of the specimens do not reach that appreciable size in the aquarium.
Banded Coral shrimp diet and feeding
Stenopus hispidus is not a picky eater and will readily accept any size food of adequate size, as well as dry food and pellets. This species very often loves to clean other fish. This behavior is very subjective, so it could also be disinterested in fish.
Banded Coral shrimp ideal tank setup
Stenopus hispidus require many rocky overhangs, caves and ravines in which to take refuge and hide from predators. They are often found clinging to the bottom of the rocks in an inverted position. While they don’t need particularly large tanks, a medium-sized capacity is recommended. This shrimp is very sensitive to chemical changes in the water and will therefore benefit from the stability that larger aquariums provide. It is also essential to acclimatize these shrimps to the new aquarium conditions very slowly to minimize the risk of shock.
Stenopus Hispidus tank mates and companion pets
These marine shrimp are not fond of company and it may be wise to keep only one specimen in the aquarium, unless they have already mated with a companion. In addition, this “boxing” shrimp can be a threat to other small crustaceans (e.g. hermit crabs and other cleaners) and even small fish, so choose their tank mates carefully. Banded Coral shrimp are also preyed upon by larger fish that are fond of crustaeans, such as the lionfish. It can be tricky to pick tank mates for this shrimp that are small enough not to prey on it and large enough not to be preyed upon.