Care Level: Easy
Reef Compatible: Yes
Water Conditions: 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.023-1.025
Max. Size: 2"
Color Form: Red, White
The Skunk Cleaner Shrimp is probably the most sought after of the common cleaner shrimps simply because it really does clean fish. These Skunk Cleaner Shrimps will setup a cleaning station on top of a section of the live rock and will wave their antennaes until a larger fish stops by and they commence their cleaning tasks. What exactly are they cleaning you may be wondering? Well, they are looking for small parasites (i.e. marine ich) and dead tissues. They will probe all over the fish, along the gills and sometimes even inside the mouth of the fish removing the parasites and dead tissues.
The Skunk Cleaner Shrimp should do fine if you want to keep them in multiples but they should not be kept with more aggressive fish species such as Hawkfish, Lionfish and Triggers who may go after them.
Feeding them is relatively easy because they will eat nearly any meaty type of fish food that you put in the tank. You just need to ensure that they are getting their fair share. They may even take flake foods once they realize they can eat flakes.
The Skunk Cleaner shrimp is usually very hardy if they have been acclimated slowly. It's recommended to acclimate them to your aquarium water over a period of an hour or more to avoid pH shock. Don't be alarmed if you look in your tank one day and see what appears to be a dead shrimp. Look around the tank and if you see that the shrimp is indeed still alive, then what you're looking at is the exo-skeleton that they shed every once in a while. You will need to periodically add an iodine supplement to the water because they use iodine in building their new exo-skeleton.
The Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp is also known as the Red Skunk Cleaner Shrimp because of the distinct pair of bright red stripes that outline the single white stripe running down its back. The Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp is often found in groups amongst live rock or coral. In the home aquarium, the Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp requires similar habitats and peaceful tankmates. Some fish, such as Hawkfish and Lionfish or predatory shrimp or crabs may see this member of the Hippolytidae family as food.