One of the most frequent questions regarding guppy fry is what do they eat. That was the first thing I asked myself when I realized that my guppy fish was pregnant. Over the years, I learned that guppy fry could eat many types of food.
This is what guppy fry typically eat:
- Brine shrimp
- Freeze-dried bloodworms
- Egg yolk paste
- Beef heart
As we move forward, I will share some helpful Youtube videos to show you the right way to feed guppy fish fry. I’ll also answer how often you should feed them and whether you should grind the food beforehand.
Still curious? Feel free to check my complete guide on guppy fry. There, I discussed how to care for guppy fry, what they eat, how often to feed them, their growth stages, and much more.
What Do Baby Guppy Fry Eat?
When guppy fry are born, you must separate them from the parents for at least six weeks. But that isn’t enough to keep them alive. You must also feed them. For the most part, guppy fry eat the same food items as their adult counterparts:
1. Brine Shrimp
Brine shrimp are an excellent food source for hungry babies because you can rear them at home, making the food item cost-effective. Make sure you add the brine shrimp to the water within 24 hours of the shrimp hatching from their eggs.
Guppy fry love freshly hatched shrimp because the meal is both tasty and nutritious. Professional aquarists expect the food item to enhance a young guppy’s color.
You can also buy brine shrimp from a store. While it is more cost-effective to rear the shrimp at home, the process is time-consuming, especially since the brine shrimp must be freshly hatched.
I would personally go with this Instant Baby Brine Shrimp (link to Amazon). This is an excellent solution for the aquarists who cannot juggle the rigors of simultaneously raising guppy fry and rearing brine shrimp.
Flakes are the first food item beginners consider because they are so easy to procure. You find fish flakes in most pet stores. They come in carnivorous and vegetarian options. But you can get one or both because guppy fry are omnivores.
You don’t have to get both meaty and vegetable flakes if your babies have another source of meat or vegetables. But if you expect the fry to survive on flakes alone (which is not a good idea), you should buy both versions.
Live food is better than flakes. But if you don’t have access to live food, flakes are a great alternative.
3. Freeze-Dried Bloodworms
‘Freeze-dried’ isn’t a type of food but rather a means of storing fish food. The objective is to preserve food by removing the moisture. You can keep freeze-dried food items for more extended periods than live food.
Technically speaking, you can freeze dry any fish food you have on hand, including bloodworms and brine shrimp. In the right hands, the freeze-drying process will protect the flavor and nutritional value of the food.
If you choose this category, I personally recommend getting the Tetra Freeze Dried Bloodworms (link to Amazon). They are highly nutritious and suitable for guppies at any stage, including when they are young.
4. Egg Yolk Paste
This option is excellent, but bear in mind that you have to make the egg yolk paste at home; you don’t buy it. You take the yolk out of an egg and boil it in a pan with water. Then, you can easily crush the yolk into a paste.
It has fat (41%), magnesium (1%), carbohydrates (1%), vitamin B6 (20%), protein (32%), and potassium (3%). You couldn’t ask for a more nutritious meal for growing guppies.
You can also grind the albumen after boiling the egg wholly:
If you’ve ever seen earthworms, you have a rough idea of what micro worms look like. Though, micro worms are smaller. Baby guppies can digest them with ease. Microworms are surprisingly nutritious, boasting protein (40%) and fat (19.5%).
You can culture micro worms if you have the necessary resources, including a plastic container with a lid, some adult micro worms, oatmeal (Breeding Media), and active dry yeast (Food for the Microworms).
But again, most aquarists do not have the time to culture micro worms while simultaneously caring for adult and baby guppies. Fortunately, you can buy micro worms from a store or another aquarist.
I highly recommend adding some vegetables to your guppy fry’s diet. That includes zucchini, potatoes, kale, cauliflower, and spinach leaves. Like the brine shrimp and egg yolk, you should crush the vegetables into sizes the babies can eat.
Vegetables bring various nutrients to the table, including Vitamins A, B6, E, and B12, calcium, iron, and magnesium. You can also blend the vegetables into a paste and freeze them. Then, use them any time you’d like.
Hikari tropical first bites are a great addition to your fry’s diet because they have plenty of proteins and amino acids. Made using premium fishmeal, Hikari tropical first bites will enhance a baby guppy’s development.
They are semi-floating, which means that fish fry can access the food item at any level of the aquarium. If that sounds like an option you would go for, I personally recommend this Hikari Fish Food (link to Amazon).
8. Beef Heart
Beef heart is a surprisingly nutritious addition to a baby guppy’s diet. You can remove the fat before cutting the meal into pieces small enough for the babies to consume.
You can improve the meal by adding egg yolk. But you shouldn’t feed the beef heart to adult guppies because it contains saturated fats:
What Food Should I Choose For My Guppy Fry?
As you can see, guppy fry eat a variety of foods. But that doesn’t mean you should get everything on the list. Pick what you can afford and make easily.
As a rule of thumb, I suggest picking vegetables, plus another food item. This way, your fry will get both vitamins and protein. More importantly, you have to ensure that the food can fit in their tiny mouths, as I’ll explain later on.
Should I Grind The Guppy Fry Food?
Guppy fry are tiny, roughly 0.6cm in length when they are born. That amounts to a quarter of an inch. They will reach the juvenile stage within the first two months. But when a female guppy first pushes them out, the creatures are tiny.
Therefore, you have to grind their food thoroughly before adding it to the tank. This means deploying a mortar and a pestle. Though, you can achieve decent results if you crush the food on a flat surface with the back of a spoon.
Baby guppies will starve if their food is too big because they have tiny mouths. Many manufacturers produce food for young fish. As such, it is already small enough for the fry to eat. You don’t have to crush it beforehand.
Bear in mind that grinding is only necessary if you want to feed the babies food items like bloodworms and lettuce that you have to prepare.
How Often Should I Feed Guppy Fry?
The digestion cycle of a baby guppy is just 30 minutes. In other words, the fish can eat every half hour. But you don’t have to feed them every thirty minutes. They should eat four to eight times every day. That means feeding them every three to four hours.
After six weeks, you can cut back to three or four times a day, which equates to 4-5 hours between meals. After four months the guppy is fully grown and can eat like adult fish.
The water parameters also matter. For instance, maintaining an optimal temperature of 76 to 80 degrees F makes the fry hungry. This is a good thing because they are comfortable and healthy. You can also trust them to eat more frequently.
The wrong conditions will do the opposite. Extreme temperatures will rob them of their appetite, not to mention harsh lighting and dirty water. Therefore, hungry babies are a good thing. Their hunger shows that the fish are healthy.
Also, the pH should be kept between 6.8 and 7.6, and the ammonia, nitrates, and nitrites should be kept at 0 ppm. To measure these, I personally use the API Water Test Kit (link to Amazon). It is highly accurate and lasts for about eight hundred measures.
If you found this article helpful, these may also interest you:
- Do Guppy Fry Need An Air Pump? (And Which One)
- How Many Guppy Fry Will Survive? (Survival Rate Explained)
- Can I Leave Guppy Fry In The Tank? Will They Survive?
- What Can I Do With Unwanted Guppy Fry?
- Is It OK To Let Guppies Eat Their Fry?
Pro tip: If your guppies breed frequently, you’ll need to know a little more about that process. Feel free to check my complete guide on pregnant guppies.
Guppy fry can eat many sorts of food, including vegetables, flakes, beef heart, and bloodworms. As a rule of thumb, it is best to mix at least two types of foods while including vegetables for vitamins.
While guppy fry can eat every 30 minutes, it is best to feed them every five to ten times a day. Keeping the temperature within 76 to 80 degrees F is crucial for their appetite. If your guppy fry refuse to eat, check the water parameters.
Don’t forget to grind the food before feeding it to your fry. Since their mouths are tiny, guppy fry will starve if the food is too large or bulky. You can use a mixer if you wish to use different types of food. You may also freeze some of the food to preserve it for an extended period.