Harlequin shrimp how do you keep em fed

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Reefer302

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I don't have one but I saw them and know that they eat star fish. Do people just buy star fish for it to eat I've heard people also cut off limbs of a star and they feed it to the shrimp and the limbs grow back. Whats the best way?
 
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ichthyogeek

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Most accounts I read of involve asking friends for asterina stars, and buying cheap starfish. You'd need a really large starfish population in order to maintain the whole feed a leg a week feedings that the shrimp need. And the cheapest starfish (chocolate chips) are also cannibalistic...
 

robbyg

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Don’t know if I could stomach the regular amputation of an animal, it just would not feel right.
I guess I will never own a harlequin shrimp.
 

OrionN

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I guess you can keep a bunch of starfish in the sump and feed them well so they regenerate quickly. I heard people buy stars and keep frozen and feed the pieces of stars to the HS. Pretty expensive live food IMO.
 
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Phil D.

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I have a LARGE population of Asterina starfish, (algae eaters luckily!), and so now to keep the population in check bought a Harlequin Shrimp. I have had her for 2 weeks now and she is very happy in her hunting! My recommendation would be to see if you can get, (or do you already have), the Algae eating Asterina and let them populate your tank, then add a Harlequin.
 

dieselkeeper

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I have a harlequin shrimp to eat asterina starfish. I'd like to pass it on another reefer. The problem is I hardly ever see it to try to catch it.
 

CivicS14

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I had an absolute nightmare of asterina stars, I put a pair of harlequins and they decimated it in a month then I passed it onto the next local reefer. Other than that, the idea of keeping a starfish and cutting limbs off to keep it fed, was too much for me.

unnamed (4).jpg
 

Thespammailaccount

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@Thespammailaccount has two pairs of harlequin starfish; she can offer some insight on feeding requirements.
I don't have one but I saw them and know that they eat star fish. Do people just buy star fish for it to eat I've heard people also cut off limbs of a star and they feed it to the shrimp and the limbs grow back. Whats the best way?
Generally people will pass one around in a local community if they have a small star population they are trying to get rid of and will pass it on to the next reefer when the problem is solved. People generally pass it to the next reefer since one shrimp needs about 50 small stars a day to survive long term. I have two pair because I enjoy them. I buy 4 to 6 starfish a month to feed them. My largest pair is over two inches and can eat an entire starfish in a few days. I do not cut off legs anymore because they are large enough to flip the starfish over and immobilized it. If you keep macroalgae in the tank they will feed the starfish to prolong its life. On average these shrimp have a lifespan of about seven years with ample food
 
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Reefer302

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I had an absolute nightmare of asterina stars, I put a pair of harlequins and they decimated it in a month then I passed it onto the next local reefer. Other than that, the idea of keeping a starfish and cutting limbs off to keep it fed, was too much for me.

unnamed (4).jpg
A pair killed all of em that fast wow
 

robbyg

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I do not cut off legs anymore because they are large enough to flip the starfish over and immobilized it. If you keep macroalgae in the tank they will feed the starfish to prolong its life. On average these shrimp have a lifespan of about seven years with ample food
OMG that is a horrible fate for the Star Fish. He's flipped and eaten then fed so he can grow back limbs and then eaten some more. These shrimp are diabolical.
 
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robbyg

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Do you feed your tank copepods, amphipods, brine, etc?
Yes but I don't go around and amputate off the copepods legs and then feed them to the fish.

Would you rather to be eaten by a shark in one bite or dipped monthly into a Piranha pool and then yanked out and allowed to have your wounds recover and then dunked back in again in an endless cycle?
 
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CivicS14

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Yes but I don't go around and amputate off the copepods legs and then feed them to the fish.

Would you rather just get eaten by a shark in one bite or dipped monthly into a Piranha pool and then yanked out and allowed to have your wounds recover and the dunked back in again in an endless cycle?
exactly why i don't keep them long term. use them to destroy asterina population and then cycle it to someone else having the same issue. they are so beautiful tho.
 
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