Rosamond Gifford Zoo

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Peppermint Shrimp

Lysmata wurdemanni

The peppermint shrimp is an attractive shrimp that serves as a "cleaner" but in the wild and in human care. It scavenges waste that other species leave behind.

Range & Habitat

Florida’s coastal waters as well as the Bahamas and the Caribbean. They are found at 3-90 feet below sea level. They can sometimes be found hiding in tube sponges.

Conservation Status: Not Evaluated


Like other shrimp, this species is a scavenger and cleaner, feeding on debris and parasites from larger animals.

Life Span

2 to 3 years

Fun Facts about the Peppermint Shrimp

  •  Peppermint shrimp change color over their lifetime depending on what color light they are exposed to.
  • They have been described as "peaceful" and "shy" by aquarium keepers.
  • Our peppermint shrimp at the zoo live in the seahorse exhibit in the Nocturnal Animals wing of Animal Adaptations. 


     Díaz‐Jiménez, L, Hernández‐Vergara, MP, Pérez‐Rostro, CI. The effect of background colour and lighting of the aquarium on the body pigmentation of the peppered shrimp Lysmata wurdemanni. Aquac Res. 2018; 49: 3508– 3516. Accessed 2/19/2021

      Georgia Aquarium. Peppermint shrimp. Accessed 2/18/2021.

      Rhyne, Andrew & Lin, Junda. (2006). A western Atlantic peppermint shrimp complex: Redescription of Lysmata wurdemanni, description of four new species, and remarks on Lysmata rathbunae (Crustacea: Decapoda: Hippolytidae). Bulletin of Marine Science. 79. 165-204. Accessed 2/19/2021.


Updated June 13, 2023
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