how to drip acclimate shrimps

How to Drip Acclimate Shrimp

It’s your first time adding shrimp to your growing aquarium. But someone told you that you need to acclimate them into their new home.

This leads you to ask: “how to drip acclimate shrimp?”

Drip acclimation is an important process for aquarists to learn, especially those who want to put shrimp in their tanks. It is considered the simplest and safest method of acclimating shrimps.

Drip acclimation of shrimp involves slowly introducing the fauna to the water from the aquarium where it will be transferred. Unlike in acclimating fishes wherein cups of water are poured, this requires a slow transfer of water from the aquarium to a container where the shrimp is placed.

This method is important because it can lessen the risks of shrimp death. Shrimp usually suffer from shock and stress when they are not given enough time to acclimate to their new home.

In short, when you drip acclimate shrimp, you are giving these little creatures a higher chance of surviving in their new environment.

Moreover, you must also research the ideal temperature and water parameters for the shrimp you are considering. Suffice it to say, the shrimp would still likely die even if you acclimate it properly when it is put in an aquarium with less-than-ideal water parameters.

How to Drip Acclimate Shrimp

To drip acclimate shrimp, prepare the following materials:

  • Net – This will come in handy when transferring the shrimp to the tank after it has been acclimated.
  • Water container – It could be a bucket, bowl, or even a drum. Just make sure that it can contain twice the amount of water in the bag where the new shrimp is. Moreover, the base should be narrow so that there will be enough water for the shrimp to swim around.
  • Airline tubing – This is a small tubing for siphoning water from the aquarium to the container. It should be at least 3 feet long so that you won’t have to place the container too close to the aquarium.
  • Control nozzle – This is an optional material that would help you in controlling the water being siphoned off the aquarium.

Step-by-Step Guide

drip acclimate shrimps

Step 1. Turn off the lighting

Before even beginning this short process, you must shut off the lighting in the aquarium. For good measure, you can also dim the lighting in the room.

Much like fish, shrimp can get stressed when they are suddenly exposed to bright lights. Therefore, it will be easier for the shrimp to adjust to its new environment when you lower the lighting around it.

Step 2. Transfer the shrimp from the bag to the container

Check on the shrimp to be acclimated to see how it’s doing. There may be parasites included in the bag where the shrimp is.

Once everything’s clear, you can now transfer the shrimp from the bag to the container. Slowly empty the bag, including the water, inside the container you have prepared.

Step 3. Siphon water from the aquarium

As indicated earlier, the idea of this method is to acclimate the shrimp to the water from the aquarium. Therefore, it requires siphoning water from the tank.

If you have a control nozzle, attach it to one end of the airline tubing. Or you may simply tie a knot to the tubing. This would help in controlling the amount of water transferred from the aquarium to the container.

This end of the tubing goes to the container where the shrimp is. The other end, meanwhile, goes to the aquarium. Also, make sure that the container is placed at a lower level than the aquarium.

Open the airline valve and sip into the end of the tubing. This would cause the water to flow. Just be careful so that you won’t gulp the aquarium water.

Once the tubing is filled with water, you need to put it back into the container.

Step 4. Control the drip

By this stage, the water from the aquarium should be dripping into the container. But you would also want to limit the drip of water to 3 drops per second. Thus, you go back to the control nozzle or adjust the knot you’ve made in the tubing.

You should aim that 75% of the water in the container comes from the aquarium. As you may imagine, this can take a while to complete.

Now, you might ask: “how long to drip acclimate shrimp?” Expect to spend two to three hours on it. Therefore, you may have to do this on the weekend or any day when you have enough time.

The long waiting time may hopefully not force you to look for ways how to acclimate shrimp without drip.

Step 5. Transfer the shrimp

After three hours of waiting, it should now be safe for you to transfer the shrimp into its new environment. Using the net, bring the fauna to the aquarium. However, you don’t have to add the water from the container to the tank.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How long should you drip acclimate shrimp?

When acclimating shrimp, it’s essential to do a proper and gradual drip acclimation. The ideal length for slow and balanced adjustment of the water parameters is about 2-4 hours or longer, depending on how sensitive your shrimp are. During this time, you should adjust the parameters such as salinity, pH and temperature for your shrimp to acclimate successfully.

Do I need to drip acclimate shrimp?

For shrimp, drip acclimation is essential before introducing them into a new tank. This ensures that the shrimp adjust to their new environment without shock, reduces stress and restores equilibrium, which will help them stay healthy and happy in their new home. During this process, you should slowly drip the water from their holding tank into the tank, letting them get used to the new temperature and pH levels before release.

How much water do you need to drip acclimate?

The amount of water needed for drip-acclimating shrimp depends on elements such as size, the number of shrimp being acclimated, and the water’s characteristics. It is best to slowly introduce tank water to the shrimp water bag until the amount is double or triple what you started with. This means that if you have a bag of shrimp that holds a gallon of water, you should drip them to get them acclimated to at least two or three gallons of water. Only then will your shrimp be truly ready for their new home.


As you may have realized, how to drip acclimate shrimp is not exactly complicated. You would only need to prepare everyday materials and have lots of patience to complete this process.

In drip acclimating shrimp, you slowly introduce the shrimp into the water parameters of its new environment. It can increase the chances of the shrimp surviving and even thriving in its new tank.

So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and prepare the needed materials and allot time for this task. You should be able to incorporate the shrimp into a new aquarium easily and safely.

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