This article is for species of the Caridina genus that reproduce and mature entirely in freshwater and have fully suppressed larval stages.
Caridina shrimp are ovoviviparous; fertilisation occurs internally before the eggs are formed and the eggs are retained until hatching.
Mating takes place shortly after the moulting of the female, which stimulates the release of pheromones. This induces rapid erratic swimming in the males (and in some species, the females) as they attempt to find the female. When they find the female they mate with her. In some species the female mates with a single shrimp, and in others it mates with more than one.
Formation of eggs:
Soon after fertilisation, the liquid of the female’s saddle is transported down between the cephalothorax and the abdomen and is secreted into the underbelly of the shrimp, forming eggs on the pleopods.
The eggs are carried within the underbelly of the female until they hatch (usually between 3-4 weeks). As the eggs are stuck to the pleopods of the female, she can ensure a flow of water over the eggs by fanning her pleopods. This prevents the growth of fungus and bacteria, which would otherwise damage the eggs. When the eggs begin to hatch, the female vigorously fans the pleopods to assist the juveniles.
The juveniles immediately assume a benthic lifestyle. As long as the correct conditions are provided and there is a plentiful supply of natural food (algae, biofilm) within the aquarium, the juveniles will mature without problems.