Guppies are a popular pet fish for many reasons. They are colorful and full of personality. They are also fairly easy to care for and breed.
These low-maintenance freshwater fish are perfect for first-time pets and first-time fish owners. As easy as it is to care for these wonderful fish, it is important to make sure you know a few key things about them. One of the most important things is how much and how often to feed them.
This Guppy Feeding Guide will tell you when to feed your guppies, what to feed them, and how to feed them. Your guppies will thank you for making sure they are getting just the right amount at just the right time.
- 1 How Often Do Guppies Need to Eat?
- 2 How Long Can a Guppy Survive Without Food?
- 3 How Much Should You Feed Guppies?
- 4 Can You Overfeed Guppy Fry?
- 5 What To Do If Your Guppy Has Been Overfed
- 6 What Is The Best Food For Guppy and Guppy Fry?
- 7 Algae
- 8 Insects
- 9 Mosquito Larvae
- 10 Small Shrimp
- 11 Small Worms
- 12 Fish Food Flakes
- 13 Fish Food Pellets
- 14 Homemade Fish Food
- 15 When Should You Feed Your Guppies?
- 16 How Should You Prepare Your Guppies’ Food?
- 17 FAQ
- 18 Recap
How Often Do Guppies Need to Eat?
How often you feed your guppies will depend on their age. Younger guppies need more food to grow quickly. Adult guppies need less food since they are no longer growing.
Adult Guppies should be fed once or twice a day. If you feed them more, you can overfeed them, and they can get sick.
Guppy Fry can be fed three to five times a day. You want to give them smaller amounts of food during each feeding because they are smaller and cannot eat a lot.
How Long Can a Guppy Survive Without Food?
Adult Guppies can survive for up to ten days without being fed. This should not be a regular thing as they will eventually starve. An occasional missed day or two will not hurt them. So, if you have plans to go away for the weekend, feed them well before leaving, and they should be fine.
Guppy Fry, on the other hand, can only survive a few days without food. They are growing and need more food at more frequent intervals than adults. Three days is the max a baby guppy can survive without being fed.
How Much Should You Feed Guppies?
There is no exact measurement for how much to feed your guppy. Guppies have a reputation for being moochers. Unless they have filled up recently, they will try to eat what you give them.
To find out how much to feed your guppy, read the directions on your guppy food. Sprinkle that amount in the tank and watch your guppies. If they eat it all within 2 minutes without looking bloated, then the amount was probably good.
If they eat it all in around 1 minute, you may need to give them a little more food. If they do not finish the food, then you need to give them less food next time. If they eat all the food and appear to be bloated, then you have given them too much food.
Once you figure out how much to feed your guppies, be as consistent as possible in feeding them. It is always better to feed them a little less instead of a little too much, especially if you have baby guppies in the same tank.
Can You Overfeed Guppy Fry?
You can overfeed Guppy Fry as well as Guppy adults. If your guppies show signs of being bloated, they are being overfed. Another sign of overfeeding is a white substance hanging off your guppies.
Guppies that eat too much can get bloated. If the overeating continues, they can end up with severe digestive problems that can cause infections, sickness, and even death. There are a few ways to tell if your guppies are overeating or being overfed.
Guppies who are being overfed but who can stop eating will end up with lots of extra food floating in their tanks. This food will begin to dissolve and cause water cleanliness problems. As food breaks down, it sometimes breaks down into ammonia which can harm your fish.
Guppies that appear bloated or who have a white substance hanging from their bodies are overeating. They may not be leaving food in the tank, but they are eating too much of it.
What To Do If Your Guppy Has Been Overfed
If your guppy has overeaten, the best course of action is to skip feeding them for the rest of the day. This will allow their digestion to get back on track. If they still look bloated after a day, give them another day without food.
Another critical step is to clean out the water and the tank. Once you have cleaned out the tank and given them a break from food, you can feed them again. Make sure you are feeding them less food. If two minutes of food is too much, feed them for only one minute.
What Is The Best Food For Guppy and Guppy Fry?
There are a number of good food options for Guppies. Guppies are omnivores and will eat just about anything you feed them. Some guppy experts recommend that you feed your guppy a live meal once a day and a dry meal once a day.
Live food options for your guppy include:
- Mosquito Larvae
- Small shrimp
- Small worms
There is also a homemade food option for those who have the time and inclination. Guppy fry should eat more live food, as it is closer to what they would eat in the wild.
Algae is a common food for wild guppies. It may be hard to come by, but there are some places to get it. Stores like Petco and Petsmart sell Algae food. It is usually dry and not live, but it still provides a good source of vitamins and minerals for your fish.
Fish food made from insects is easily available at most pet stores. You can also find a variety of live insects to feed your fish. Keep in mind live insects have to be fed to keep them alive long enough to feed your Guppies.
Guppies prefer insect larvae, so it may be best to gather insects from your own backyard. Ants can be fed to your guppies. Make sure if you feed them ants that the ants are not of a poisonous kind, such as red fire ants.
If you prefer to buy your insects, you can purchase live worms, crickets, and flies at most pet stores. You can also buy frozen or dried bugs if live ones are problematic.
Mosquito larvae are a common live food that guppies eat in the wild. They are not easy to come as people don’t really want to risk hunting mosquitos. However, you can find dried and frozen versions at some pet stores.
You can find fresh, frozen, and dried shrimp for your guppies to eat. Fresh live shrimp have to be eaten within a certain amount of time. Brine shrimp are a popular option, and you can find them full-grown or as eggs.
Small worms or baby worms can be found fresh, frozen, or dried. They make great food for your guppy. Fresh living worms are easy to care for and feed to your fish.
With any frozen food, whether worms, shrimp, or insects, it is important to thaw them before feeding them to your fish.
Fish Food Flakes
Fish flakes are less popular among fish enthusiasts but are more traditional. They dissolve quickly, which can cause waterfowling. However, the quick dissolving also tends to get the attention of more finicky or picky eaters.
The ease at which they dissolve is also something that helps prevent stomach problems. On the other hand, your fish are more likely to overeat these because they are so small and easy to consume.
One thing to consider is the size of your fish. Smaller guppies need smaller food. Fish flakes may be a better fit for your guppy if even the small pellets are too big.
Fish Food Pellets
Vegetable pellets often include a mix of algae, plankton, and spirulina. This combination is great for guppies. Combine it with a high-protein fish flake, and you have a good, balanced meal for your guppies.
Pellets are the most popular option because they do not dissolve as quickly as food flakes. This helps prevent the fowling of the water from dissolved food bits. Pellets can come in many sizes. Some of them are made to float, and others are made to sink.
There are some disadvantages to food pellets. For one, they are dehydrated and can cause bloating and blockages. Dehydrated food expands when it gets wet, but this process takes time. If you put too many in your guppy tank, then your guppies will eat too many before they expand.
With pellets, it is best to sprinkle a few in at a time, watching your guppy. This will help prevent overfeeding. Another simple solution is to presoak the pellets. Presoaking allows them to absorb liquid, so they won’t absorb liquid while in the belly of your guppy.
Homemade Fish Food
Homemade Fish Food recipes are available online. You may also be able to pick one up at your local pet store. Make sure you are looking for recipes for Guppy Food, as different fish need different types of food.
Adult Guppies need a good balance of protein and vegetables in their food. Guppy Fries need a high protein diet, along with plenty of vegetables.
The key to making your own food at home is making sure to include the right ingredients and make sure to chop or blend them small enough for your guppies to eat.
When Should You Feed Your Guppies?
It is common practice to feed adult guppies every twelve hours. A good example might be to feed them between six and eight in the morning and evening. If this doesn’t work for your schedule, you can feed them with a gap of ten or eleven hours and fourteen or thirteen hours.
For Guppy Fries, you may want to feed them every six to eight hours. They will be okay if you can’t feed them during the day while you are at work.
Guppy Fry Potential Feeding Schedule:
- Feed them first thing in the morning
- Give them a small snack before you leave for work
- Feed them as soon as you get home
- Feed them right before bed
You can also invest in a timed fish feeder that you can set to feed them at certain intervals.
How Should You Prepare Your Guppies’ Food?
How you prepare food for your guppies will depend on the food. Is your food dehydrated? Is it frozen? Is it live? Is it homemade?
Dehydrated foods, such as pellets or dehydrated insects, should be soaked in the water ahead of time. This allows them to return to their normal size. This is important because your guppy can overeat if the food is shrunken with dehydration.
Dehydrated foods can cause bloating and blockages if not properly soaked ahead of time. This, in turn, can make your fish very sick. They can even die if the blockage is too big.
Fish flakes require no preparation. The most important thing to do if you are using them as food is to make sure not to grab too many when you give your guppies a pinch.
If the fish flakes are homemade, the preparation is fairly straightforward. First, you make the food paste. Make sure you have cooked all the ingredients. This helps create the paste, and it ensures that no bacteria get into your fish from raw food.
Once the food is cooked and blended into a paste, you can spread it out and bake it. Once it is bakes wait for it to cool down and then break it into small pieces. The smaller the pieces, the better.
Store your homemade flakes in either a dry, cool area or the freezer. Remember to thaw frozen foods.
Fresh Living Foods
Fresh living foods do not need to be prepared. However, they do need to be taken care of. Keep them alive before you feed your fish. Do not feed your fish any that have died.
The smaller the insect, worm, or shrimp is, the easier it will be for your guppies to eat it: insect and worm larvae and the best options. Tiny baby shrimps are also great. Feed these to your fish at least once or twice a week. Many experts recommend that you feed live food to your fish every day.
Frozen foods must be thawed before they can be fed to your guppies. Frozen food can have all kinds of negative effects on fish if they eat it while frozen. Thaw the food in the refrigerator. Because of its small size, the food should thaw quickly.
Below you will find a couple of frequently asked questions that relate to our topic of Guppy Feeding.
How Can I feed Guppies Vegetables?
Guppies are omnivores, and they will eat vegetables. Guppies need protein as well as vegetables, so do not feed your guppy only vegetables. To prepare your vegetables for your guppy, follow these easy steps:
- Blanch the vegetables.
- Blend the vegetables into a paste. *You can include some cooked chicken or cooked egg if you would like to make a mix.
- Spread the paste on parchment paper on a baking sheet.
- Bake in the oven at 250 Fahrenheit or 120 Celsius until dried out.
- Let your dried paste cool down.
- Break the dried paste into small flakes.
- Store in a dry place or in the freezer.
What Vegetables can I feed my Guppies?
There are lots of vegetables that you can feed your guppies.
- Green beans
- And more!
Can I Feed My Guppies Fruit?
Yes, you can feed fruit to your guppies. Like with the vegetables, cook, blend, and bake the fruit into meal flakes. You can also feed small uncooked, raw pieces to your guppies. Feed them fresh fruit no more than twice a week.
Fruits your Guppies can eat include:
- Grapes * in small amounts
- Watermelon * in small amounts
- And more!
There is a downside to feeding your guppies fruit. Fruits have fructose which is sugar. This sugar can cause bacteria to grow in the fish tank. It is a good idea only to feed your guppies fresh fruit right before you plan to clean their tank. This way, the sugars don’t hang around and make your guppies sick.
Can Guppies Eat Rice?
Yes, guppies can eat rice. However, rice has very little nutrients for guppies. They can survive on it, but they will not be getting all the nutrients they need. If you want to feed them a little bit of rice or put a little bit of your homemade fish flakes, that will be fine.
What Can I Feed Guppies When I’m Out Of Food?
You can make your own guppy food quite easily. It will be okay for a day or two if you have rice on hand until you get more guppy food. Make sure it is plain rice, not flavored rice.
Worst case scenario, you can go a few days without feeding your adult guppies.
Are There Any Foods I Should Not Feed Guppies?
In general, highly processed human foods are not good for your guppies. Do not feed them Bread or Food made from boxes.
The key things to remember about feeding your guppies are:
- Smaller feedings are better
- Pellets and flakes are the two most popular premade foods
- Guppies are omnivorous
- Guppy Fry eat more often and need smaller servings
Have a wonderful time getting to know your guppies!