Durban Dancing Shrimp Koh Tao
Learn about the Durban Dancing Shrimp on Koh Tao
Due to their small size and their ability to hide in small cracks it can be very difficult to notice these beautiful small creatures.
Where to find the Durban Dancing Shrimp on Koh Tao
The easiest way to see them is when scuba diving at night time, as their big eyes reflect back from the torch light of scuba divers to reveal two small red dots.
How to identify the Durban Dancing Shrimp
Durban Dancing Shrimp have a hump shaped body that is mainly red in color apart from intricate white dots and lines that cover their body, legs and their eyes protrude out on red stalks, which are usually a dark blue colour.
The larger of the Durban Dancing Shrimp will grow up to 4cm long and males can be identified by having substantially larger claws than females.
Rostrum of the Dancing Shrimp
At the front of their body, they have something known as a rostrum that forms what almost looks like a beak.
This rostrum when the Durban Dancing Shrimp is not moving can move from side to side and gives them the name the Dancing Shrimp.
Durban Dancing Shrimp Characteristics & Behaviour
The Durban Dancing Shrimp can be found in huge colonies of a few hundred or more and they tend to be more active at night time, which is when they choose to feed.
During the day, they spend their time hidden in darker cracks and holes of the reef however, they can still be seen sometimes around the tops of rock pinnacles moving to a different shelter.
Females have the capacity to hold up to 1700 eggs under their body, which they carry from one (1) to three (3) weeks at a time.
Interesting facts about the Durban Dancing Shrimp
The Durban Dancing Shrimp has been seen forming symbiotic relationships with other fish species and their behaviour helps to rid fish of parasites or dead skin in return for a free meal.
They wave their antenna as an announcement to tell fish they are open for business and any nearby fish will swim over and open their gills and mouths for the Shrimp to clean.