Little Shrimp, But My BIG Mistake

Recently, I picked up a Yasha Hase goby!

I was on the fence about getting a goby because a lot of them are just not my favorite in terms of appearance, but this one really appealed to me. And, I also didn’t want to spend the $$ on Dracula gobies which also have a unique coloration but not as unique finning. Currently, the YHG is still under two inches long, and I have not been able to determine whether it’s old enough to be sexed. I’ll give it a few more months, and then see if I can bring in another of the opposite sex to get them to pair. I could have bought a bonded pair on LiveAquaria’s Diver Den, but I’m trying not to use LA too much. I find that price after shipping is just not very fair or favorable.

Since certain gobies and pistol shrimps are known to form a symbiotic relationship, I decided to pair it with the Randall’s pistol shrimp which has similar coloration to the YHG. But when I called around, none of the shops in my area had any! I checked online also, and while the shrimp itself is cheap <30$, overnight shipping would immediately triple it in price. No point in paying overnight shipping for just the shrimp when I have nothing else to order with it.

I placed a call to my LFS (shoutout to Aquatic Sealife, they’re always so accommodating), and they placed an order for pistol shrimps.

I received word a couple days ago that they had received shipment. So I drove there as soon as I could once my schedule allowed it, which happened to be the 24th! To my luck, they did receive at least one Randall’s pistol shrimp!

Randall’s Pistol Shrimp (alpheus randalli)

Very colorful, very eye catching and also very tiny! This little guy was less than an inch long. But, I was excited nonetheless to be able to get one so quickly given that other people were also having difficulty sourcing them.

I acclimated him, and it was time to let him loose into the tank.

But then that’s when the BIG MISTAKE on my part happened.

I never thought to turn off the powerheads in my tank because none of my other shrimp were this small. Whelp…

Imagine my horror when I release the pistol shrimp into my tank, and he immediately gets sucked by the Nero 3. I manage to get him off, but I see one of his claws floating through the water. I panic smashed all my neros off, and watched horrified as the traumatized shrimp tried to swim his way in the tank to a safe spot. Eventually he did find the small rock cave that my blenny used to use and took up residence there.

Honestly, it was such a traumatizing oh sh*t moment for me. I had never turned off my powerheads prior to today for introducing new inverts and fish, and it was truly a lesson from hell on doing it.

It’s been a few days since that incident, and my shrimp hasn’t made much of an appearance. However, I know he’s still alive because the sand in the area keeps moving and shifting daily. I’m hoping that my YHG finds it soon and that they will pair up, and all the trauma will be the past.

From what I saw it looks like the snapping claw is what came off. Based on what I read, the non-snapping claw will transform into a snapping claw and the other claw will grow back in a few months. So, he should be fine going forward.

But man, I really think letting him into the DT without turning off the powerheads was once of the worst mistakes I’ve made in a while. I don’t think I’ve felt my heart rate and blood pressure sky rocket quite like that in a while.

I just figured it was worth sharing so that you guys don’t make this simple mistake either and safe yourself some panic!


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