Can A Cherry Shrimp Live With A Betta? – Is It Safe?

When it comes to betta fish also known as ‘Siamese fighting fish,’ the idea of placing them and cherry shrimps together in an ecosystem sounds intimidating.

If you put an innocent/peaceful aquatic creature with another creature with ‘fight’ in its name, it can spark interesting questions.

For example:

Can a cherry shrimp live with a betta fish?

After doing a little research, it turns out that vivarium owners can place cherry shrimps with betta fish!

There are quite a few exceptions, though.

In this article “Can A Cherry Shrimp Live With A Betta,” you will learn:

  • the compatibility between a betta fish and a cherry shrimp
  • how you can get them to be compatible with each other
  • how you can set up an ecosystem to house both aquatic creatures

To find a specific topic when it comes to betta and cherry shrimp, feel free to use the table of content below.

Disclaimer: There may be Amazon affiliate links on – When users purchase through an affiliate link, there will be no additional cost to the purchaser. Instead, I will earn a commission from your purchases. 

Cherry Shrimps And Bettas Living Together

can cherry shrimps and bettas live together
chemmie1976 | Pixabay

Although it may sound to be impossible, cherry shrimps can stay with betta fish without any problems. 

However, this does not in any way imply that the cherry shrimps are going to be fodder for the betta fishes, but rather they are going to live together as tank mates for a considerable period of time.

Of course, there are circumstances where some betta fishes do not like to share their tank with other creatures – but it is mainly due to other circumstances that can intensify the situation.

Getting Betta Fish To Live With Cherry Shrimps

can a cherry shrimp and a betta fish live together
ivabalk | Pixabay

First of all, you need to introduce the two creatures in the tank. 

However, to ensure that your betta fishes keep their distance from the shrimp, there are a few things that you need to do.

Step #1

The first and foremost thing that needs to be done is to pick a betta that has already been living with a shrimp or other fish

By doing so, you already know that the betta has a wonderful temperament and likes to live with other creatures without finding any problems territorial aggression, and other aggravating features. 

Always ensure that you do not pick a betta that lives on its own; not only is this signifying that the betta is aggressive, but it also can indicate that the fish has some kind of sickness.

Step #2

The second thing that needs to be done is to accommodate plenty of hiding places for your shrimp in the water tank.

The tank needs to contain an abundance of java moss and driftwood which are both wonderful shelters for the shrimp as well as the betta. 

Having a lot of hiding places for either of the creatures makes them feel safer, which in turn will ensure that they will both feel confident living in that tank.

Step #3

The third thing that can be done to ensure that these two creatures can live together is to have a large enough aquarium or water tank

If that is not enough space for your betta to move around, chances are that it will feel frustrated and territorial and would be more prone to attacking the shrimp.

Normally, having a 5-gallon tank for either the shrimp or the betta alone is ideal.

However, when you want to keep them together in a single tank, then anything less than 10 gallons is not going to cut it. 

You need to give them plenty of space so that they can move around without having to find themselves constantly in each other’s faces.

The larger the tank, the lesser chance that your betta would feel territorial.

Step #4

The fourth and last thing that can be done to ensure that the two creatures live together is to introduce the shrimp before the betta to the tank

Betta fish are territorial, and would attack anyone that they believe are infringing within their territory. This is why I recommend putting your cherry shrimps in first! 

However, when the shrimp marks that tank as it steadily, the betta would not feel intimidated.

While doing so, remember to introduce the shrimp in the tank after proper parameters for the water and temperature are checked and are ideal for the shrimp.

Setting Up A Tank That Houses Betta Fish And Cherry Shrimp

can a cherry shrimp live with a betta fish
yin8003211 | Pixabay

Well – now that you are fairly certain that the betta would not attack your cherry shrimp, it is time for you to set up the proper tank.

Emulate The Natural Habitat

The first thing you need to do is to emulate the natural habitat that both of these creatures live in. 

Here’s what you should know:

The cherry shrimp normally likes to live in rocky flooring that contains a lot of vegetation and has a lot of places to hide.

The betta fish before requires similar surroundings, and therefore you need to create a rocky substrate as the flooring to your tank and fill it with a lot of vegetation to ensure the perfect habitat for either of the species.

When plants are to be added in the tank, one recommended aquatic plant is java moss

These kinds of plants are excellent for cherry shrimps, particularly because when it grows large enough, the cherry shrimp can use them as hiding places for themselves.

For the betta fish, getting betta bulbs is also recommended.

With larger plants, it will surely help your betta fish to find a lot of spots to hide.

Adding a substrate is also necessary, but please ensure that the gaps aren’t that big, and the gravel that you use is not too heavy. 

If these are not maintained, then the cleaning job becomes very difficult and there is also a possibility for the legs of your shrimp to get caught within the gap.

One very important factor to maintain while having cherry shrimps in your aquarium is to always use a filter sponge otherwise your cherry shrimp might get sucked into the filter and die.

From VivariumTips,

After all – cherry shrimps can live with a betta in certain situations.

What’s your plan?

If you enjoyed this betta/cherry shrimp article, you might also want to check out a few related ones that I wrote.

Cherry Shrimps:

Betta Fish:

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