Cleaner Shrimp

© Johan Boshoff

Common Family Name

Cleaner Shrimp

Scientific Name



From 1,2 cm to 30 cm


Elongated body with segments. Five pairs of legs. Thorax is solid with a bendable abdomen. Two pairs of antennae. They have pinchers on the first two pairs of legs. Colouration varies with red, white and orange dominant and pink, yellow, brown and blue also observed.

General Info

Alpheoidea superfamily consists of 22 genera and 129 species. This superfamily includes all shrimps. Distinguished from prawns by comparing the second abdominal segment, which overlaps both first and third segments in prawns. Some of this family acts as cleaners of fish on reefs. Pelagic spawners.


Feeds on parasites, skin parasites, detritus and small fish.


Occurs in all temperate and tropical oceans of the world.

Common Species

Cleaner boxer shrimp
Stenopus hispidus
Durban dancing shrimp
Rhynchocinetes durbanensis
White-banded cleaner shrimp
Lysmata amboinensis