Creating your own aquarium is really exciting and you want to make sure that you are putting in organisms that pair well together. If you are interested in a Pistol Shrimp, you are probably wondering what kind of fish they will pair best with.
In the wild, Pistol Shrimp have to have a fish to pair with because they can’t see very well at all. The fish of choice for the Pistol Shrimp is a Goby fish. This includes the Diamond Goby fish, which is a really fun aquarium fish. A Pistol Shrimp and a Diamond Goby are a good pair for your aquarium.
What is a Pistol Shrimp?
A Pistol Shrimp is a shrimp family that is known for their claws. The pistol shrimp has two different styles of claws, one large and one smaller. They also have an incredible ability to create huge shockwaves with their larger claw. They live in tropical waters, marine waters, and temperate coasts.
Pistol Shrimp are incredibly noisy. They are so noisy that they can interfere with underwater communications like sonars. It is crazy to think they are that loud when they are only 2 inches big. In most cases, their large claw can be half the size of their body.
A Pistol Shrimp has terrible eyesight, and they are almost completely blind. This makes it really difficult for them to navigate and spot danger on their own. This makes them a target for predators. They provide a safe habitat for themselves by digging burrows to live in.
What is a Diamond Goby?
A Diamond Goby is a reef fish that is super peaceful. It will liven and brighten your aquarium. This fish has slight colorful spots and a fun personality. They are pretty easy fish to take care of, and they are perfect for beginner and advanced hobbyists all the same.
Their favorite thing to do is play, dig, and sift their way through the sand in their environment and it is really fun to watch them do. The maximum size of a Diamond Goby is only 6 inches. Since they are a saltwater species, they prefer lagoons and outer reefs when they are living in the wild.
Does the Diamond Goby Pair Well with Pistol Shrimp?
Diamond Goby fish and Pistol Shrimp might pair well together. It will depend on the environment that they are living in together. In a natural environment, it is not clear which organism seeks out the other. It has been studied for a while, but it always seems that the two stumble upon each other.
The two do not fight over food, which makes them a better pair. The Diamond Goby eats tiny fish and micro-fauna that is found near the ocean bottom. The Pistol Shrimp will eat organisms that they find while they are burrowing their homes. Since they do not have to fight for food, they can exist together peacefully.
Diamond Goby and Pistol Shrimp Relationship
When the Diamon Goby and Pistol Shrimp are living in a coral reef, they have what is called a symbiotic relationship. Symbiotic means they interact with each other closely. In most cases, the Pistol Shrimp will burrow and share their space with the Diamond Goby. The Goby will be the lookout for the pair, scanning for danger.
When the two organisms are outside their shared burrow, the Pistol Shrimp will hold onto the Diamond Goby’s tail with its antenna. The fish will always have better sight than the shrimp, so it can spot danger easier. If the fish sees something dangerous, it will wiggle its tail to alert the shrimp that they need to go back into the burrow.
The relationship between these two organisms is considered to be mutually beneficial. This is not just the case for Pistol Shrimp and Diamond Goby, but it is also true for 130 species of Goby fish and 20 species of Pistol Shrimp.
The relationship between a Pistol Shrimp and a Diamond Goby is strong enough to last a lifetime. They will typically start bonding with each other when they are young, and they will remain partnered together into adulthood. They will spend all of their days burrowing together and foraging when it is safe.
Can a Pistol Shrimp Live without a Paired Goby?
If you have a Pistol Shrimp in an aquarium with no Goby fish, they will be able to live as long as you don’t have any fish that might be threatening to the Shrimp. While a Pistol Shrimp can live without a Goby, they will thrive when they do have one to pair with. It is best to try to pair them together if possible.
Making it Work in an Aquarium Setting
If you want to bring this relationship into your aquarium, you need to make sure you have at least a 30-gallon tank for them to live in. The tank also needs to have live rock without any overly aggressive and active tank mates. For the bottom of the tank, you need to have a minimum of 2 inches of live sand or gravel for the Pistol Shrimp to burrow.
Wrapping it Up
It can be tricky trying to figure out which organisms work well together in an aquarium and which ones don’t. Pistol Shrimp are really exciting creatures to have in your aquarium. They are tiny shrimps with one large claw and one small claw. They can also be really noisy and can even interfere with underwater communication. They also have really bad eyesight.
That is where the Diamond Goby comes in. The Diamond Goby and the Pistol Shrimp basically form an alliance with each other. The Pistol Shrimp creates the burrow that it will share with their Goby. The Goby will keep watch and protect the Pistol Shrimp from danger.
When pairing these two organisms together in your aquarium, they should get along with each other as long as there is plenty of space for them to move around together.
- Small Critters With a Big Story to Tell: The Shrimps by By Marty Snyderman, 2005 https://dtmag.com/thelibrary/small-critters-with-a-big-story-to-tell-the-shrimps/