July 15, 2024

If you’re going to keep a crayfish as a pet, there are a few things you might want to consider. After keeping a pet crayfish for almost three years, I have learned several important things about pet crayfish care.

Tank size matters

First of all, the size of the tank will be very important if you plan to keep a crayfish and other fish. For one, crayfish are very dirty creatures. A crayfish can foul a tank fairly quickly from the waste it produces. For this reason, I would suggest at least a twenty gallon tank. I have personally been able to keep my own crawfish in a ten gallon tank. However, doing so required more frequent water changes to keep the tank fresh and clean.

Also, a larger tank will provide more space for crayfish and other fish. This is good since crayfish are very territorial creatures.

Types of tankmates

River crayfish are aggressive creatures. They are omnivores who love nothing more than to get their claws on something and eat it. They have no problem eating other fish in your tank, plants, and even other crayfish if you have them.

So if you plan to keep other fish in your tank along with your pet crab, get fish that are also aggressive. Fish that swim near the top of the tank and are fast also work very well.

I currently have hatchet fish and a red tail shark in my twenty gallon tank along with my pet blue crawfish. The red tail shark has actually been living with my pet crab for about two years. It has worked very well because he is also aggressive, swims near the top of the tank, and is a fast swimmer. This is not to say that my crawfish doesn’t try to catch it from time to time, it does.

Remember, fish that are slow and swim near the bottom of the tank, where crayfish live, are more likely to be eaten. I lost a few fish early on because they were slow swimming fish.


My experience has been that if I keep my crawfish well fed, they are not always as aggressive. Obviously, the hungrier a crayfish is, the more likely it is to try to hunt down and catch your other fish. So feed your crayfish, but of course don’t overfeed them.

get a hide

Your crayfish needs a hiding place. Once again, crayfish are territorial and like to have a place to burrow. This is especially true and important when your pet sheds the crawfish. Because when a crayfish moults, it also becomes a target for other creatures in the tank, since it is weak. Hideouts are inexpensive and can be purchased at any pet store. Or you can just make them out of PVC pipe.

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