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6 Best Filter for Shrimp Tank In 2023

Nano shrimp are fairly easy to care for and the process of setting up a tank, though sometimes meticulous, can be a fun process.

If you have some experience in setting up a fish tank, then this can be a breeze for you.

The key to successfully caring for nano shrimp is knowing what the best filter for shrimp tank use is.

Once you have this knowledge, the overall job of keeping your tank well-maintained becomes easier.

Know that there are a lot of different filters in the market, so it’s important that you look at the pros and cons of each one to make sure you end up with the best filter for your tank size and purpose.

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Best Filters for Nano Shrimp Tanks

To help you find the best filter for nano shrimp tank use, here’s a list of the most recommended ones in the market.

Aquaneat Aquarium Bio Sponge Filter

[amazon box=”B078X7CKF6″]

If you want your filter to be hidden well, then a corner filter like this could be the best shrimp safe filter for you to use.

It can cover a tank that’s up to 55 gallons in size. It’s also fairly quiet and provides both biological and mechanical filtration.

These [amazon link=”B078X7CKF6″ title=”corner sponges” link_icon=”amazon” /] normally last for months before requiring a replacement. Just make sure that you use the water in the tank to rinse off the sponge before replacing it.

Remember that good bacteria responsible for cleaning the water live in those sponges. It would be such a waste if they die just because you need to replace the sponge.

Replacement sponge for this filter can also be easily bought online once needed.


  • Easy to use and assemble
  • Lightweight
  • Affordable


  • Too lightweight that it would need a lot of support (preferably from gravel) to stay wherever it is positioned
  • Strainer is too small that it would require the use of a small air diffuser
  • Has the tendency to have additional dirt buildup in the corner where it is placed

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Aquaneat Air Driven Bio Corner Filter Sponge

[amazon box=”B079M732S6″]

Another one from Aquaneat, this is a contender as the best filter for shrimp tank use because of its multi-layered design.

It comes in two versions which can be used for tanks that are up to 20 or 40 gallons in size.

Just like the previous filter, this is a corner filter and cleans water both mechanically and biologically.

As mentioned, [amazon link=”B079M732S6″ title=”this filter” link_icon=”amazon” /] has different layers providing specific roles. The top layer consists of a white filter pad where mechanical filtration occurs.

The next layer has a black sponge for biological filtration, while another layer of gravel takes care of biochemical filtration.

The sponge on this filter may need rinsing every 2 to 4 weeks, depending on the amount of dirt building up.

Again, make sure you save the bacteria in the sponge by rinsing it with the water in the aquarium instead of using regular tap water.


  • Extremely quiet
  • Uses very low wattage
  • Very easy to clean because of its multi-layer design
  • Great for tanks with small fish or shrimp because there is almost no way for them to be sucked into the filter
  • Adjustable height
  • Comes with suction cups to keep it from floating around


  • Instructions are not clear, which could make it a challenge for a complete newbie to install

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Aqua Clear Fish Tank Filter

[amazon box=”B000260FVG”]

An HOB filter, this option proves to be highly versatile. This also has multiple layers to ensure that the water is filtered efficiently.

The bottom layer has a foam insert, which removes debris and allows beneficial bacteria to thrive at the same time.

The middle layer has activated carbon that absorbs any unwanted impurities in the water.

As for the top layer, it has ceramic rings and a pore system that also serves as a home for beneficial bacteria.

The [amazon link=”B000260FVG” title=”Aqua Clear filter” link_icon=”amazon” /] comes in a number of different sizes, so you’ll have an option available for you regardless of how big your tank is.


  • Allows you to decrease or increase contact with water depending on your preference
  • Has the longest water-to-filter contact compared to other filters in the market
  • Uses an energy-efficient pump, making your overall operating cost a lot cheaper
  • Easy to use and install
  • Comes in a compact size but has a huge filtration volume


  • May create a low vibrating sound while in use
  • The smaller models have a few problems with flow

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Video: “PetSolutions: Aqua Clear Power Filters”

Tetra Whisper In-Tank Filter with BioScrubber

[amazon box=”B0002DHYG8″]

The [amazon link=”B0002DHYG8″ title=”Whisper in-tank filter” link_icon=”amazon” /] can be used for tanks of up to 40 gallons (depending on version). It’s quite versatile and uses bio-bag filter cartridges for it to function.

This filter is mounted on the inside, which means that you can easily place your tank against the wall.

Aside from being one of the best filter for nano shrimp tank use, this filter is also great for turtle tanks, in case you eventually want to shift to a different area of focus or enjoy a variety of different animals to breed or care for.


  • Can be positioned at different levels depending on how much water your tank has
  • Extremely silent
  • Very easy to clean
  • Efficient filtration system can cover a large surface area
  • Filter cartridge is easily accessible
  • Moves a lot of water


  • Not as strong as other filters of the same size in the market
  • Does not come with a lid

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Video: “Tetra Whisper In-Tank”

Penn Plax Cascade Canister Aquarium Filter

[amazon box=”B0002DJIQW”]

Penn Plax is popular for their canister filters.

Although this model uses plastic as a material for its body, it still is hard, quality plastic that makes it durable.

The kit comes complete with a spray bar, some tubing, and a directional spout.


  • Offers a flow rate of up to 115 gallons per hour
  • Can be used for tanks of up to 30 gallons
  • Spray bar helps with water aeration and circulation
  • Comes with two large filter trays for more efficient filtration
  • Easy to clean
  • Comes with a self-primer button


  • Priming it for the first time can be a challenge
  • Consumes a lot of power
  • Can be a challenge to set up especially for newbies

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Video: “PetSolutions: Cascade Canister Filters”

Fluval 107 Performance Canister Filter

[amazon box=”B07JGLN6XC”]

The [amazon link=”B07JGLN6XC” title=”Fluval 107 canister filter=”amazon” /] can be used for tanks of up to 30 gallons.

It may seem small in size when you see it, but that shouldn’t fool you. It’s perfect for smaller tanks, but its powerful motor makes it quite efficient even if you have a slightly bigger tank.

This filter comes with a clog-proof intake strainer, a dual-layer foam screen, and an Aqua Stop valve.


  • Uses a multi-stage filtration system, making it useful for both freshwater and saltwater tanks
  • Uses a sound dampener, so it operates quietly
  • Uses advanced motor technology, making it much more efficient than other similar filters
  • Filters water mechanically, chemically and biologically
  • Has a powerful flow rate


  • Much more expensive compared to other filters of the same size
  • Does not have an output flow height detector
  • Because it is mounted externally, it can be a challenge if you want the tank as close to the wall as possible

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Video: “Fluval 07 Canister Filter Series | Unboxing & Overview”

Aqualexs Aquarium Filter Guard for Shrimp and Fish

[amazon box=”B07XXXXSQ7″]

If your chosen filter requires a pre-filter, then here’s a bonus review for the [amazon link=”B07XXXXSQ7″ title=”Aqualexs Aquarium Filter Guard” link_icon=”amazon” /] for Shrimp and Fish.

This comes in diefferent versions, so it should fit perfectly if your intake filter is between 9mm to 18mm. It’s perfect for preventing your small shrimp from going into the main filter.

Its design is pretty solid and is made of high-quality steel mesh.

It’s the perfect thing to pair up with anything that you would consider as the best filter for shrimp tank use, especially if you have a problem with small shrimp and fish going into your filter.

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Choosing the Best Shrimp Safe Filter for your Tank

There are three different filters you can use in getting your nano shrimp tank ready.

Sponge filter

This is usually the preferred shrimp safe filter among breeders of nano shrimp. The filter works through an air pump that’s covered with a sponge.

Regardless of whether your shrimp are hatchlings or adults, this kind of filter is generally safe.

The size of your nano shrimp tank matters in choosing a sponge filter. The efficiency of these filters relies on how well the filter will be able to circulate the water as it passes through the sponge.

The sponge becomes a breeding area for beneficial bacteria that will, ideally, clean the water. If the filter is not big enough for the tank you’re using, then it will not carry enough bacteria.

This means that the water will not be cleaned well, which has an impact on the overall water quality in the tank.

What could make you think twice about sponge filters is the fact that it does not generate a lot of water movement.

This can be a problem if you plan on keeping filter feeders in your tank. It’s a good thing there are other kinds of filters that are more suitable for filter feeders.

Hang-on-back (HOB) filters

Although sponge filters are more popular, HOB filters are more commonly available in the market. They are just as highly efficient in maintaining water quality in a tank and come in different sizes as well.

To make this filter safe for your nano shrimp, a separate pre-filter made of a material similar to sponge is required. This pre-filter will prevent your shrimp from being sucked into the filter by serving as a cover over the intake.

Again, size matters in making sure that the HOB filter runs efficiently. The pre-filter will definitely limit the flow of water into the filter, which means that the filter itself would have to be powerful enough to move enough water around.

One thing you’d have to remember when using a HOB filter would be to keep the pre-filter clean. Nothing makes this filter become less efficient more than a clogged pre-filter.

Canister filter

Canister filters are the most expensive among the three types of filters you can use. Knowing, however, that it’s efficiency more than makes up for the high cost, a lot of serious nano shrimp breeders believe it is worth the investment and would consider it the best filter for shrimp tank use.

Just like HOB filters, canister filters also require a pre-filter. Again, this is to prevent the tiny shrimp from going into the actual filter. The pre-filter would also need regular cleaning to prevent clogging.

Canister filters have a bigger filtration area. They can also be fitted with UV light purifiers that can help get rid of different contaminants. These make the water quality topnotch. This is also the best option if you have filter feeders in your tank.

Weigh the pros and cons of each type of filter before deciding which kind could be the best filter for nano shrimp tank use. It also depends on what you’re using your tank for.

If it’s just for breeding, then a sponge filter will do. But if you want an elaborate show tank to show off to friends and other enthusiasts, then a canister filter would be your best bet.

Final Tips in Finding the Best Filter for Nano Shrimp Tank Use

Choosing a shrimp safe filter is not an easy task. There are a number of options to choose from, so it’s imperative that you weigh your options well before settling on a single one.

Here are a few tips to allow you to end up with the best filter for shrimp tank use:

Always consider protection for your shrimp. They’re called “nano” shrimp for a reason – they’re extremely small, small enough to be sucked into the filters if you’re not too careful. Make sure you have a pre-filter if needed.
  • Always think about the size of your tank. It’s better to have a filter that’s a little big for your tank size as opposed to having one that’s smaller than what is required.
  • Consider what you want to use your tank for. Again, sponge filters and HOB filters are okay if this is simply for home use or for breeding purposes. But if you’re serious about showcasing your tank, the best filter for nano shrimp tank use would still be a canister filter.
  • Think about the costs. Canister filters can be very expensive, and the overall operating and maintenance costs can be steeper compared to when you use other kinds of filters, too. You don’t want to find yourself in an awkward situation, budget-wise. If you have a limited budget, for now, go for a cheaper option until you have more cash to use for your tank.
  • It’s not just about the kind of filter you have; it’s also about how well you maintain it. A shrimp safe filter requires care and cleaning, so make sure you consider this when buying a filter. The last thing you want is to have a filter that makes cleaning the tank a frustrating process. Note that cleaning your filter regularly does not just affect how efficient it is, it also affects how long it will last.
  • Use a volume calculator to understand what flow rate you should be aiming for.
  • Shrimp are extremely sensitive to metal additives in the water, so be careful especially when it comes to your initial filter installation. Clean the filter material thoroughly and let fresh water run through it a few times before placing the shrimp in the tank.
  • Remember that no filter is perfect, so always prepare for potential challenges. Since the pros and cons of each filter have been outlined above, you can pretty much prepare yourself for potential issues. The important thing is to understand how each kind of filter works and know how well it can work for the setup you’re planning.
  • Enjoy the process! It’s fun breeding and showcasing nano shrimp. Some people may find the hobby boring, but the entire process has its own quirks that make it all worthwhile. Although it’s important to look at the technicalities (like choosing the right filter for the job), it is also important to remember that the challenges are part of your journey in breeding and taking care of nano shrimp.

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    Hopefully, the recommendations above would help you purchase the best possible filter for your shrimp tank.

    You could also try other models of the given brands and filters above, especially if you have diverse requirements.

    Aaron Boyd
    Aaron Boyd

    Hello, I’m Aaron Boyd, the proud owner and author behind Aqua Movement. I hope my article was able to answer your questions. If you want to learn more about me, click the home icon above.

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