Peppermint Shrimp, Lysmata wurdemanni, are a very popular shrimp from the Florida Keys. Peppermint shrimp are most commonly used to control Aiptasia anemones (Pale Anemones) in reef tanks and refugiums. Aiptasia anemones can overrun an aquarium or refugium, and no amount of picking and cleaning will get rid of them like these little shrimp will. If you’ve ever had an outbreak of these anemones, you’ll know what I mean, and if you have an outbreak right now, this is what you need. Aiptasia are common hitchhikers on live rock from the Gulf of Mexico, and on some plants and zoanthids. Without some sort of natural predator to control them, they will quickly start multiplying and will overwhelm your tank. Peppermint shrimp are natural predators for this anemone and will eliminate them from your system.
Peppermint shrimp are also cool little shrimp that are very active in an aquarium. During the day they usually can be found holding on to the undersides of rocks swaying back and forth, and moving their antennas all around. When it’s feeding time, they will quickly swim out and actually take food out of you hand as well as give your fingernails a quick cleaning. Make sure you keep them fed after the Aiptasia are gone because they can be pretty ornery if they are hungry.
Another neat thing about them is that they will breed in your tank and produce multiple batches of eggs each year. They are being cultured now in some places, and who knows, maybe some will survive in your refugium.
During the cooler months of the year they can be safely shipped by priority mail.
Acclimating peppermints is very important. Please drip them slowly and put them on an air stone / bubbler too.