View Full Version : Peacock Mantis Shrimp

10/27/2015, 01:32 PM
I would like to know anything and everything there is to know about these guys! How deep of a sandbed do i need, what to feed, how often to feed, ive heard when these guys molt they disappear for a few days is that true(and if so why?), should i go with an acrylic aquarium so they cant break it, etc?

10/27/2015, 03:04 PM
I just posted a video on youtube that I linked in my thread entitled "mantis shrimp tank set up video". I have a Peacock and you will get a lot of the information you need in the video.

Regarding the molt question, yes, Peacocks do disappear for about a week or so when they molt because they have to allow their shell to harden before it is in full working condition again. When you consider that these animals use their raptorial appendages to perform thousands of strikes on hard shelled prey (crabs, snails, etc), it's clear that they need to have a very durable exoskeleton. They remain hidden for their own protection as their shell hardens up. They also cease feeding during this time of course so they are often quite hungry when they re-emerge from the burrow.

10/29/2015, 06:52 PM
I watched the video and it was very helpful, thank you. Do they need a bigger footprint opposed to a taller tank, do they swim at all? I was thinking something like a 20g long would that be good for its whole life? I read they need a 24g minimum.

10/29/2015, 07:40 PM
A 40 long would be the smallest you can go. They need that full footprint.

Some researchers will say 24 minimum, however this is mostly just for research purposes, permenant homes would have to be taken a bit more seriously as O. scyllarus does enjoy to roam a lot, and despite only being 6 inches in length, they're very bulky and quick making the room seem crowded. Other sources like suppliers that suggest 30 or under usually don't know much about mantis shrimp in general (I can name one that's able to even tell the difference between G. chiragra and O. scyllarus.)

Bigger footprint over hieght for sure, I'd recommend minimum 4 foot tank length, however 3 foot can be good enough.. although they make not be as active knowing there is less room.

10/30/2015, 04:48 PM
Thank you, very helpful! I also read they need a 2m dsb on roys list. Do they need this deep of a sandbed, or will a "U" shaped pvc pipe suffice(if so how big of a pipe)? What is the minimum sandbed depth you guys would recommend for O. Scyllarus?

10/30/2015, 10:35 PM
Roy's list is not specific on how deep to make a sand bed for an O. Scyllarus. In the wild, their burrows might be a couple feet deep underneath a large piece of LR. For the home aquarium, Dr. Caldwell often recommended PVC pipes as the best substitute for that. The substrate doesn't need to be that deep at all.

My sand bed is less than 0.5" in some places, around 2" in locations where the mantis has moved a lot of the substrate near its burrow. I would put in around 0.75" of sand and then expect to see the mantis recreate the bottom of the tank as it sees fit. Remember that more substrate = more detritus build-up = more cleaning necessary.

As in the video, the pipe needs to be ~1.5x the width of the animal. For a full grown O. Scyllarus, you'll likely need a 3" diameter pipe that is at least a foot long, but many people like to run it across the entire back of the aquarium.

10/30/2015, 11:39 PM
I have about 3' of 3" drain pipe in my 90gal peacock tank. He loves it.
I've got about 4" of sand in the tank as well as about a 3 gal bucket of rubble rock.