Invertebrate species

Terrific aquarium dwellers without vertebral column: invertebrates

Although the marine aquarium offers a much larger variety of invertebrates, you can still find a lot of beautiful invertebrates in freshwater aquariums. Shrimps, crustaceans, crabs and snails are very popular animals and you can keep many species in small aquariums. The German Animal Protection Act states, for instance, that you only can keep fish in aquariums from 54 liters upwards!


Shrimps are like crustaceans dependent on oxygen in the water because of their gills. Therefore the aquarium water needs to be well aerated by the filter or an air stone. For the filter it is important that a suction opening is no danger for shrimps (or shrimp offspring)! Please give therefore preference to filters with foam in front of the air intake system. Very suitable are: JBL CristalProfi m greenline , JBL PROAQUATEST Cu Copper .

For the aquarium water it is imperative to check whether any copper content is measurable ( JBL Cu Copper Test ). If you can measure even a trace of copper you MUST use a special water conditioner ( JBL Biotopol C ) since copper is essential for shrimps, but is deadly in measurable amounts. JBL plant fertilisers ( JBL PROFLORA Ferropol , JBL PROFLORA Ferropol 24 etc.) do contain copper, but NEVER in amounts that can be dangerous for invertebrates. They can therefore be used without any worries.


Snails can become pests or desired gems. Beautiful and fascinating snail species are becoming more and more popular.

Apple snails (Pomacea, Marisa, Asolene), swamp cover snails (Viviparus, Filopaludina)

Omnivorous, persistent and adaptable. JBL PRONOVO BOTIA TAB M and JBL PRONOVO TAB M are happily eaten.

Nerites (Neritidae), antler snails (Clithons)

Crepuscular and nocturnal, do not maintain below 20 °C, reproduction in freshwater not possible, separate sexes, good algae eaters

Great ramshorns (Planorbidae), trumpet snails (Melanoides)

Often unpopular because of intense reproduction, very low-maintenace.

Sulawesi rabbit snales (Tylomelania)

Have special water requirements: 27-31 °C, pH around 8, soft water. Omnivores. Like to eat JBL PRONOVO SPIRULINA FLAKES M .

Predatory snails (Buccinidae)

Popularly used for slug control. Keep sexes separate. Temperature from 20 °C. Replacement food instead of snails: JBL PRONOVO TAB M .


The subphylum of the crustaceans with over 50,000 species has more species than the order of the fish!

One of the most popular animals among aquarium enthusiasts must be the shrimp, since they are peaceful and generally remain small. Shrimps are particularly ideal for enthusiasts with aquariums of less than 50 litres volume.

Many crab species are also very popular. Only a few of them are real aquarium dwellers, however. They prefer an aqua-terrarium with land part to a pure aquarium, filled with water!

Another group are the crayfish, which due to their appearance are also referred to as freshwater lobsters. You do need to know exactly how big the species will grow, since a lot of them can grow to be very large, are incompatible and can also be dangerous for your fish stock.

Cherax species

Can have incredibly beautiful colours! Some species grow to 10-12 cm, but many species also grow to 20 cm. Temperatures from 20 °C. Food: JBL NovoCrabs .

Cambarellus & Procambarus species

Cambarellus & Procambarus species: Species that remain small and are not as aggressive within the species as Cherax species. Water temperatures 10-30 °C depending on species. Food JBL NovoCrabs .


Dwarf shrimps (Caridina and Neocaridina species) are very sociable animals, whereas longarm shrimps are loners. Larger fish sometimes prey on the smaller dwarf shrimps – while longarm shrimps can prey on fish.

Small crustaceans, such as Gambarellus and Procambarus are peaceful creatures and can be well socialised.

The large Cherax species can be dangerous for other fellow occupants and should ideally be kept in a single-species aquarium. Even if the crayfish leave the fish alone during the day, they may prey on the sleeping fish.

Gender differences

In many crayfish defining the gender is not difficult: the gonopores (genital openings) might look similar, but they are located in different places: on the male they are situated between the rear leg pairs, on the females they are further forward.


The small and colourful tank inhabitants are not only beautiful to look at, but can also help with aquarium care. They are conquering more and more aquarists' hearts all over the world.

Caridina & Neocaridina species

Small, peaceful and mostly sociable species with a body length of only 2-4 cm. Many Caridina species prefer cooler water of 20-24 °C.

Sulawesi shrimps

Some of the most colourful shrimps come from lakes on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.

Fan shrimps (Atya species)

Strong shrimps up to 10 cm in length, which are absolutely peaceful and can be socialised well with fish.

Red claws (Macrobrachium)

Among the Macrobrachium species there are true giants with a length of over 30 cm.

Bee shrimps

Max. 3 cm small species that likes to live in groups. Prefers low temperatures around 20 °C (use JBL PROTEMP Cooler!).

Bumble bee dwarf shrimps

Also only max. 3 cm in size. Demands: like bee shrimps, with which they can also interbreed!

Tiger dwarf shrimps

Shrimp species that grows to only 3 cm long and eats any kind of food. Prefers JBL PRONOVO SHRIMPS GRANO S and  JBL PRONOVO SPIRULINA GRANO S .

Red fire or cherry shrimps

Remain 3 cm small, easy to keep species that takes any kind of food.

Amano shrimp

At 5.5 cm, it grows larger than the species mentioned so far. Very good algae eater, needs to be kept in small groups.

Red rhinoceros shrimps

Can grow up to 4 cm long and feel comfortable in 23-28 °C warm water.

Cardinal shrimp

Grows to only 1.5 cm long and makes special demands on the water: high temperatures of approx. 27-30 °C, soft to medium-hard water with a high pH value around 8.

Harlequin shrimp

With 1.5 to 1.8 cm another small, but beautiful species. Not easy to keep!

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