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How to make good management during shrimp shelling?

How to make good management during shrimp shelling?

What is shrimp shelling?

The metamorphosis and growth of penaeus vannamei are through constant shelling of larvae. The shelling is the result of the growth and development of the shrimp. After the shrimp grows to a certain extent, with the accumulation of nutrients, it is a must for the shrimp shelling.
According to different changes in the growth and development of penaeus vannamei, it can be divided into juvenile shrimp stage and adult shrimp stage.
In the four main stages of larval stage (nauplii, zoea, mysis, and shrimp baby), the larvae is existing with greatly different in morphology. Since the larvae's shell is thin and soft, it is named skin instead of shell, the skin’s shelling is called metamorphosis.

After the larval stage, shrimp skin become thick and hard, at this time, which called “shelling”. Under normal circumstances, the shrimp body will grow significantly every time after the shelling, but shrimp will not grow every time after shelling. For example, when the nutrient is not enough, instead of growth, the shrimp will have negative growth. The shelling can also remove the parasites and other substances which attached to the shell, and also can regenerate the stump.


Shelling interval

In larval stage, the shelling interval is short. From several hours to one or two days. 
After larvae, it will become regular. It is usually occurring on the first and fifteenth of every month. This has also become the basis for farmers to judge the growth of P. vannamei and the water quality.

The conditions of vannamei molting

The growth of vannamei is proportional to the shelling speed. The growth of shrimp must depend on shelling. Under normal feeding management, once the shrimp shells, it will grow greatly.

Three basic conditions for shrimp shelling:
  • Sterols synthesize ecdysone, which is an essential substance to promote the shelling of vannamei. Therefore, the amount of steroids stored in the pancreas determines whether ecdysone synthesis is sufficient. 

  • Lipids are substances that provide sufficient energy for shelling. Shrimp fat is generally stored in the pancreas. If the energy is insufficient, the shrimp will not be able to complete the whole process of shelling, resulting in incomplete shelling and the death of shrimp.

  • The storage condition of calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and other elements in pancreas before molting, and it is also the key substance for the rapid hardening of the new shell after the shelling.

It can be seen that the storage of nutrients in the body is the basic condition for the normal shelling of vannamei.


If the ecdysone cannot be synthesized normally during the shelling of vannamei, or it cannot meet the shrimp's requirements for trace elements such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, or the pancreas cannot provide sufficient energy, it all will affect the smooth shelling of the shrimp. It will appear the symptoms of soft shell shrimp and failure of shrimp shelling, also the weak vannamei easy to die, which will cause significant losses.

How to manage shrimp during shelling?

Calcium supplementation need to be done as early as possible instead of after a large number of shrimp shells in the pond (The first and fifteenth days of the lunar calendar are the peak periods of vannamei shelling). At the peak of shelling, we need to timely add calcium and adjust the trace elements in the water.

Prawns have particularly high requirements for dissolved oxygen during the shelling stage, so sufficient dissolved oxygen must be ensured to prevent death from hypoxia. Choose nutritional and scientifically formulated feed. Add bile acids in the feed to enhance shrimp pancreas functions, improve shrimp immunity to ensure high survival rate during the shelling stage.



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