How To Keep Panda Cory with Shrimp - "File:Corydoras panda 1.jpg" by Chrischang is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.
How To Keep Panda Cory with Shrimp - "File:Corydoras panda 1.jpg" by Chrischang is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.


Introducing the captivating world of aquatics, where the combination of panda cory with shrimp creates a harmonious and visually stunning ensemble in your aquarium. The fascinating interplay between these two distinct aquatic species promises not only an aesthetic delight but also a dynamic showcase of unique behaviors. In this exploration, we will delve into the enchanting appearance and intriguing behavior of panda corydoras and shrimp, shedding light on how to create an ideal environment for their coexistence in your underwater realm.

About Panda Corydoras and Shrimp

Panda Corydoras and shrimp are both popular choices in the aquarium hobby due to their unique and attractive appearances as well as their interesting behaviors. Let’s take a closer look at each of these aquatic creatures.

Panda Corydoras

Appearance: Panda Corydoras are small, peaceful, and charming freshwater catfish that are native to the Amazon River basin in South America. They are named for their striking appearance, which resembles the black and white colors of a panda bear. Here are some key features of their appearance:

  • Coloration: The most distinctive feature of the panda cory is its contrasting coloration. They have a white or pale yellow body with bold, black patches covering their eyes and dorsal fin, resembling a panda’s facial markings.
  • Body Shape: These fish have a sleek, elongated body with three pairs of barbels around their mouths, which they use to search for food on the substrate.
  • Size: Panda corydoras are relatively small, typically reaching lengths of about 1.5 to 2 inches (3.8 to 5 cm).

Behavior: Panda Corydoras are known for their peaceful and social nature. Here are some aspects of their behavior:

  • Schooling: They are shoaling fish and should be kept in groups of at least six individuals. When kept in a group, they exhibit interesting schooling behavior, swimming together and exploring the aquarium.
  • Bottom Dwellers: Pandas are bottom-dwelling fish, spending most of their time scavenging the substrate for food. They have a particular affinity for sifting through sand and gravel.
  • Peaceful: These fish are peaceful and coexist well with other non-aggressive fish species. They are a great addition to community aquariums.

Aquarium Shrimp

Appearance: Aquarium shrimp are a diverse and visually appealing group of invertebrates commonly kept in freshwater tanks. Different species exhibit various colors and patterns, but they share some general characteristics:

  • Coloration: Shrimp come in a wide range of colors, including red, blue, green, brown, and even translucent or transparent varieties. The coloration can vary greatly between species and is often influenced by genetics, diet, and water conditions.
  • Size: Aquarium shrimp typically range in size from less than half an inch (1 cm) for smaller species to over two inches (5 cm) for larger ones. Popular species like Cherry shrimp (Neocaridina davidi) and Amano shrimp (Caridina multidentata) fall within this size range.
  • Body Shape: Most shrimp have a streamlined and elongated body with a hard exoskeleton. They possess two pairs of antennae, one pair of claws (pincers), and two pairs of walking legs.

Behavior: The behavior of aquarium shrimp can be both fascinating and entertaining to observe:

  • Foraging: Shrimp are efficient scavengers and algae eaters. They spend their time grazing on surfaces, plants, and substrate, helping to keep the tank clean from detritus and algae.
  • Social Interaction: Shrimp are generally social and thrive when kept in groups. They often engage in communal activities, such as foraging and molting together.
  • Molting: Like all arthropods, shrimp undergo molting, where they shed their old exoskeleton to allow for growth. During this vulnerable period, they may hide and become less active until their new exoskeleton hardens.
  • Reproduction: Many species of aquarium shrimp are prolific breeders when provided with suitable conditions. They reproduce by laying eggs, which hatch into miniature versions of the adults called larvae.
  • Cleaning: Some species, like Amano shrimp, are known for their excellent algae-eating abilities and are often used for algae control in aquariums.
  • Burrowing: Certain species may exhibit burrowing behavior, digging into the substrate to create hiding spots or search for food.

In addition to Cherry and Amano shrimp, other popular aquarium shrimp species include Ghost shrimp (Palaemonetes spp.), Crystal Red shrimp (Caridina cantonensis), and Bamboo shrimp (Atyopsis moluccensis), each with its unique appearance and behavior. Whether kept for their striking colors, cleaning prowess, or simply their intriguing behavior, aquarium shrimp add a delightful dimension to any aquatic setup.

Both Panda Corydoras and shrimp are excellent additions to a well-maintained aquarium. Their striking appearances and interesting behaviors can provide hours of enjoyment for aquarium enthusiasts, making them popular choices for aquarists of all experience levels.

How To Keep Panda Cory with Shrimp - "File:Corydoras panda 1.jpg" by Chrischang is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.
How To Keep Panda Cory with Shrimp – “File:Corydoras panda 1.jpg” by Chrischang is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

How To Keep Panda Cory with Shrimp

When considering keeping panda cory with shrimp in the same aquarium, several important factors should be taken into account to ensure a harmonious and thriving aquatic environment for both species:

  • Tank Size: Choose an aquarium of an appropriate size. A 20-gallon (75-liter) tank or larger is ideal for accommodating both panda cory with shrimp. Having sufficient space helps reduce territorial conflicts and allows for proper water quality maintenance.
  • Substrate: Use a soft and smooth substrate like sand or fine gravel. This provides a suitable environment for panda corydoras to sift through while not harming the delicate shrimp, which can occasionally bury themselves in the substrate.
  • Filtration: Ensure efficient filtration to maintain good water quality. Corydoras are sensitive to ammonia and nitrites, so a well-established biological filter is crucial. However, make sure the filter intake has a protective cover to prevent shrimp from being sucked in.
  • Water Parameters: Maintain stable water parameters that suit both species. Panda corydoras prefer slightly acidic to neutral water with a pH range of 6.4 to 7.4 and a temperature between 72-78°F (22-26°C). Cherry shrimp thrive in similar conditions.
  • Aquascape: Incorporate live plants and hiding spots in the aquarium. Plants like Java moss and Anubias provide cover for shrimp, while corydoras will appreciate driftwood and caves as potential hiding places.
  • Feeding: Both species have different dietary preferences. Ensure a balanced diet by offering sinking pellets or tablets for the corydoras and small-sized shrimp pellets or algae wafers for the shrimp. Make sure the shrimp have access to their food without competition from the corydoras.
  • Compatibility: Observe the behavior of your specific panda cory with shrimp to ensure they are compatible. In most cases, these species coexist peacefully, but individual temperament can vary.
  • Breeding Considerations: If you plan to breed either species, provide suitable conditions for reproduction. Cherry shrimp will readily breed in the presence of hiding places and stable water parameters. If successful breeding occurs, be prepared for an increase in shrimp populations.
  • Compatibility with Other Tankmates: Consider the compatibility of other tankmates as well. Avoid aggressive or predatory fish species that may harm the shrimp or stress the panda corydoras.
  • Regular Maintenance: Perform regular water changes and monitor water quality closely. Ensure that ammonia and nitrite levels remain at zero, and keep an eye on any signs of stress or illness in either species.


In conclusion, creating a thriving aquatic environment that includes both panda cory with shrimp can be a rewarding endeavor for aquarium enthusiasts. Understanding the unique characteristics, needs, and behaviors of these two species is essential to ensure their coexistence and well-being in the same tank. By carefully considering factors such as tank size, water parameters, substrate, and compatibility with other tankmates, aquarists can foster a harmonious and visually captivating aquarium ecosystem. Whether you’re enchanted by the distinctive appearance of panda corydoras or the diverse and colorful world of aquarium shrimp, the combination of these two species can offer a delightful and engaging experience in the world of aquatics.