The common grass shrimp has a delicate, nearly transparent body with a distinctive serrated “horn” over the eyes. It lives in shallow waters throughout the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers.
The common grass shrimp has a segmented, nearly transparent body that is compressed on either side. It has a pointed, serrated “horn” that extends over its eyes. Its first two pairs of walking legs have claws. The shrimp grows to 1.5 inches in length.
Shallow waters, often among bay grass beds. May move to warmer, deeper waters in winter.
Found throughout most of the Chesapeake Bay and its tidal rivers.
Grass shrimp forage for worms, algae and tiny crustaceans.
Small fish such as sunfish and killifish feed on grass shrimp.
Usually spawns in summer, when water temperatures warm. Females must molt before mating. The female carries her eggs in a brood pouch, visible through the shrimp’s transparent body. Eggs hatch into free-swimming larvae after 12-20 days. Larvae go through several developmental phases over the first 1-2 months of life. Grass shrimp live approximately one year.