Why do you need a aquarium pump non-return check valve to care and breed your volcano Shrimp (Opae ula, Halocaridina rubra) ?

Many people place their aquarium air pump below the aquarium.

During a power failure, water can back flow into the air pump, destroying the transformer and causing a short circuit.

A non-return check valve is a little plastic device that block the water and save you aquarium air pump from damage

How it does that ? It allow only one-way air flow or water flow.

One way non-return check valve prevent water from getting into air pump

How to take a good and sharp photograph of your volcano shrimp (Opae ula, Halocaridina rubra) so that you can study it in detail ?

My colleague asked me, "The shrimp is so small, how can I see them ?"

As always, my answer is to take a photograph.

Everyone has a mobile phone and it comes with a camera.

First, you snap a digital photograph of your shrimp with your mobile phone.

Then you open up the photograph on your phone.

View it at 100%, 200%, 300%, 500% or higher magnification.


But not all mobile phones comes with close-up or macro features.

To solve this problem, I ordered an iPhone attachment called an Olloclip.

Olloclip comes with a wide angle, fisheye and 2 close-up lens.

I just clip this on my iPhone and go shooting.

I use an olloclip attachment on an iPhone to take close-up photograph of the shrimp

There are many close-up attachment on the market for various phone model.

Just get one that fit your budget.

How to sex the volcano shrimp (Halocaridina Rubra, Opae Ula, Micro Lobster, Super Shrimp, Hawaiian Red Shrimp, Ecosphere Shrimp, Anchialine Shrimp, Endemic Red Shrimp, Legendary Red Shrimp) ?

There are anatomy differences between the male and female volcano shrimp.

But due to its small size and quick reflexes, you will lose the shrimp in seconds.

Or you can bait them with food and use a magnifying glass to observe them.


Luckily, I learnt a trick to locate the female shrimp quickly.

When the female volcano shrimp is matured and ready to breed, the eggs sac behind the head will turn black.

The female shrimp has a more vibrant red colour than the male.

Fertile and mature female volcano shrimp with an eggs sac behind the head


On the other hand, male volcano shrimp don't have an egg sac.

Males are mostly white, yellow, spotted pink or translucent in colour.

Their body are more slender and the claws are bigger than the female.

Due to the small size, it's almost impossible to see.

Male has a slender body and look translucent or pale white.

But if the shrimps are scared or disturbed, it will lose its colour immediately.

Both sexes become translucent and identical for hours.

You will need to wait for them to calm down before you can sex them again.

I feed my shrimp (Opae ula, Halocaridina rubra) sinking fish food pellet, so what are the ingredients used in these food pellet ?

What ingredient are inside your fish food pellet ?

Fish food pellet contains protein, fat, fibre, ash and phosphorus.

The ingredients used are very similar:

  • Fish
  • Poultry
  • Beef
  • Wheat
  • ​Blood
  • Corn
  • Soy Bean
  • Carrot
  • Celery
  • Beet
  • Parsley
  • Lettuce
  • Pea
  • Kelp
  • Spirulina
  • Krill
  • ​Alfalfa
  • ​Fish oil
  • ​Yeast

Get a varieties of fish food for your shrimp, such as those formulated for carnivore and herbivorous fish.

Feeding the same food over and over will bore the shrimp. They might show lack of interest over a period of time.

My colleague kept the volcano shrimp (Opae ula, Halocaridina rubra) in a small bottle and did not feed them for 4 years !

My colleague kept the volcano shrimp in this bottle for 4 years without feeding !

My colleague had a small bottle with 8 volcano shrimps.

The local fish shop (LFS) told her no feeding was required to care for the shrimp.

She did ! For 4 years,  the shrimps managed to survive without any food.

Soon after I helped her moved the volcano shrimp into a bigger bottle and a water change, the shrimps started to breed.

So I asked her, "So what did you do differently to encourage the shrimp to breed ?"

She answered, "Nothing. I just started feeding the shrimp.

Basically, she drop 1 to 2 fish food pellets into the bottle once a week.

The pellet are coloured red and green. Green pellet contains more plant materials than the red pellet.

Keep the fish food in a small air tight bottle.

So give the shrimp enough food and a bigger home to live in.

In return, they will surprise you with their offspring !

Why do you need a salinity refractometer to care and breed your volcano Shrimp (Opae ula, Halocaridina rubra) ?

The analog salinity refractometer is a device that accurately measure the salinity of water in your shrimp tank.

All you needs is 1 to 2 drops of water sample.

A salinity refractometer has a wide range of measurement and can read from 0 ppt to 100 ppt.

It is very similar to a salinity hydrometer.

There is also a electronic version called a digital salinity refractometer.

Salinity refractometer can measure a wide range from 0 ppt to 100 ppt

Why do you need crushed coral to care and breed your volcano Shrimp (Opae ula, Halocaridina rubra) ?

Crushed coral consists of calcium carbonate, magnesium, sodium, phosphorus.

I use them to supplements minerals and trace elements not found in lava rock and water.

The crushed coral also buffer the water and increase the pH.

If you cannot find crushed coral, another alternative is aragonite sand.

Coral chips contains calcium and magnesium carbonate. It can prevent the water from becoming acidic.


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