Name: Stenopus hispidus
Origin: Western Atlantic
I had a banded coral shrimp in my tank since I was able to put some good fish in. This is a great little shrimp, with one heck of a funny attitude. He would hide in the back and go after my fish, but could never get them. He would eat anything that was fed into the tank, mostly frozen stuff, but loved to be hand fed flakes. He would shed regularly, and I really didn't notice much difference in his size, but then all of a sudden he seemed to get really big, it was very cool. They have really long antennae with which they will "look" around corners, either during feeding time, or if there is a fish getting a little too close to his area. I am told that you should only keep one Banded Coral Shrimp per tank, because they get pretty aggressive towards each other.
I had a coral banded shrimp in my original fish only tank. I liked his "spunky" attitude and quickly decided to get another so he could have some company. Bad mistake. The new (and smaller one) chased the larger one around for almost one week. Then the larger one ripped the smaller one's claws off. Did that deter the smaller one? No!!! He continued to chase the larger one around for almost two more days. The the larger one picked up the smaller one and ate him. And she did not let him go even after he was dead. I tried to pull the little guy's dead body away from her, but she ate him to the last morsel. I say "she", because soon after the smaller one's untimely death, I saw her carrying a pouch of greenish eggs on her underside. Of course the eggs never hatched, but it was quite interesting to watch their violent mating.
This is a very hardy shrimp! But beware, the females are twice the size of the males and are vicious. They are very territorial and will even go after your fingers if they get too close.
The coral banded shrimp is a great addition to any reef system. Only one should be kept as they can fight to the death. They do offer cleaning services for fish, but not nearly as regularly as the cleaner shrimp does. Larger specimens will try and sometimes succeed in catching small fish. Otherwise enjoy!
I got a BCS. I totally recommend this shrimp to the beginner. When I first put it in my tank it started to groom itself. After about an hour I found out that it had pulled it's own right claw off. It usually comes out in the morning or late at night. It even comes out when just the blue light is on. I keep it with my Electric-Blue Damsel and my Yellow-Stripe Maroon Clown.
I am not sure about what the rest of you all will think, but my band coral shrimp actually eats parasites off of my fishes. Something like the cleaner shrimp. It would setup a cleaning station and my fishes would go there to get themselves clean. This fellow actually pulled my tank through some nasty whitespot attacks.