Guppies' Feeding Schedule: How Often?

how often should you feed guppies

Guppies are colourful, hardy, and easy-to-care-for fish, making them popular pets for aquariums. While feeding guppies is not a complicated task, it is important to learn about their needs to avoid overfeeding and ensure they are healthy.

The frequency with which you should feed your guppies depends on their age. Young guppies require more food to support their rapid growth, while adult guppies need fewer meals. It is recommended to feed adult guppies once or twice a day, and young guppies two to three times a day. Guppy fry, or baby guppies, should be fed four to five times a day.

The amount of food you give your guppies is also important. Guppies will eat every time you serve them food, whether they are hungry or not, so it is easy to end up overfeeding them. To avoid this, give them a small amount of food that they can finish within one to five minutes. If they finish the food within a minute, you can give them a little more next time. If they take more than two minutes to finish, reduce the amount of food.

Guppies are omnivores, so they will eat almost anything you put in their tank. However, it is important to choose high-quality food to keep them healthy. For adult guppies, you can feed them a variety of foods, including live food, flakes, pellets, and frozen food. Guppies also benefit from vegetables such as peas, cucumbers, and lettuce in their diet. For guppy fry, feed them baby brine shrimp, crumbled fish food flakes, and hard-boiled egg yolks.

While guppies can go without food for up to two weeks, it is not recommended to leave them unfed for this long. Guppies are active swimmers and require regular nutrition to stay healthy.

Characteristics Values
Feeding frequency for adult guppies Once or twice a day
Feeding frequency for young guppies Two to three times a day
Feeding frequency for guppy fry Four to five times a day
Feeding frequency for pregnant guppies Four to five times a day
Feeding frequency for guppies on a vacation Once every two or three days
Ideal time gap between meals Twelve hours
Quantity of food A pinch or a small amount
Time taken to finish food 30 seconds to five minutes
Food options Flakes, pellets, brine shrimp, bloodworms, mosquito larvae, vegetables, etc.


How often to feed adult guppies

Guppies are ravenous eaters and will eat every time you serve food to them, so it's important to know how often to feed them to avoid overfeeding.

The best feeding schedule for adult guppies is once or twice a day. You should feed them a small amount that they can finish within one to five minutes. Guppies are greedy little fish, so it can be hard to tell when they're actually hungry. As long as all the fish are getting a healthy amount of food each time, then you don't need to worry about them starving.

It's easy to feed guppies too much food, and difficult to feed them too little. Overfeeding can cause health issues for your guppies, so it's important to be careful. Signs of overfeeding include a bloated appearance, lethargy, loss of appetite, stringy faeces, and swim bladder disease.

If you're going on vacation, adult guppies can last a week without food before experiencing any lasting effects. If you're going to be gone for longer than a week, you can use an automatic feed dispenser, a feeder block or gel feeder, or have a friend or neighbour feed them.

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How often to feed young guppies

Young guppies, also known as "fry", require a special diet and should be fed separately from the adults. They have tiny mouths and high protein requirements, so their food needs to be rich in protein and finely chopped.

You should feed the fry several times a day—about 3 to 8 times, in tiny amounts. Guppies are growing rapidly at this stage of their lives, and they have greater energy needs than adult guppies, as well as smaller stomachs. Make sure to only give them as much food as they can finish in under a minute. If the water gets cloudy or dirty, despite frequent water changes, reduce the amount of food and check that it is small enough for them to eat.

After about 2 months, the fry should be considerably larger and will only need to be fed 3 to 4 times a day. After about 4 to 5 months, they can be switched to an adult diet and fed once or twice a day.

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How to tell if your guppies are hungry

Guppies are ravenous eaters and will eat every time you feed them, whether they are hungry or not. This makes it challenging to know when they are hungry. However, there are some signs you can look out for to tell if your guppies are hungry.

Firstly, guppies that are hungry will often swim to the top of the tank, as they know that food is often provided from above by their owners. They may also dig at the substrate or nibble on plants in search of food. Guppies that are hungry may also display aggressive behaviour due to the stress of an irregular or inadequate food supply. Finally, guppies may become inactive or sluggish if they are hungry, as they are not getting the food they need for energy.

If you are feeding your guppies at regular intervals, they should not be hungry. Guppies can easily become overweight, so it is important not to fall for their pleading looks and feed them outside of their regular schedule.

Baby guppies, or fry, need to be fed more often than adult guppies. Feed guppy fry between four and eight times per day, reducing the number of feedings as they grow. Adult guppies should be fed once or twice a day, with at least one meal consisting of live food.


How to feed guppies when you're on vacation

Guppies are hardy fish and can survive for up to two to three weeks without food. However, if you are going on a vacation, there are several things you can do to ensure your guppies are well-fed and healthy in your absence. Here are some detailed instructions on how to feed your guppies while you are away:

Ask a Friend or Family Member:

This is often the best option as it ensures that your guppies' regular feeding schedule is not disrupted. Provide clear instructions on feeding times and amounts to your chosen caregiver. To prevent overfeeding, you can even prepare individual bags with measured portions of food for each day. If you will be away for more than two weeks, you may also need to ask your helper to perform a small water change and assist with basic aquarium maintenance.

Hire a Fish-Sitter:

If you don't have any friends or family members available, consider hiring a fish-sitter, preferably someone with experience in fish care and aquarium maintenance. They can follow your feeding instructions and maintain the tank while you are away. Ask the fish-sitter to provide updates on your guppies and the aquarium during your absence. However, keep in mind that hiring a fish-sitter may be costly, especially if you have multiple tanks.

Use an Automatic Feeder:

An automatic feeder can be a convenient option, but it is important to test it before you leave to ensure it works properly and your guppies will eat from it. One popular option is the Eheim auto-feeder, which is suitable for powder and pellet food. Keep in mind that automatic feeders can get clogged with flake food, and you may not be able to control the exact amount of food dispensed, potentially leading to overfeeding.

Prepare Your Tank Before Leaving:

Proper tank maintenance is crucial to ensure the health of your guppies while you are away. Here is a checklist to follow before going on vacation:

  • Clean the mechanical filter a few days before leaving to remove fish waste and debris. Do not clean the biological filter, as it contains beneficial bacteria that help remove ammonia and toxins.
  • Perform a larger water change (50%-70%) one day before you leave to reduce the buildup of nitrates.
  • Put your aquarium lights on a timer to maintain a consistent light cycle. Excessive light can lead to algae growth.
  • Remove dead or dying plants, as they can contribute to ammonia levels in the tank.
  • Visually inspect your guppies and remove any sick or unhealthy fish that may die while you are away, as their decomposition can produce toxic levels of ammonia.

By following these steps and choosing an appropriate feeding method, you can rest assured that your guppies will be well-cared for while you enjoy your vacation.

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What to feed baby guppies

Guppies are livebearers, giving birth to live fry, and baby guppies are ready to eat as soon as they are born. They have a voracious appetite and a quick digestion cycle, so they need to be fed small amounts of food frequently.

Baby guppies will eat anything their adult counterparts do, as long as it is crushed into small enough pieces for their tiny mouths. Live foods such as baby brine shrimp, microworms, daphnia, or vinegar eels are optimal for fry, but frozen or dry foods are suitable alternatives. Crushed flake foods or specialised high-protein powder foods are also great choices.

You can also give baby guppies an additional protein boost by feeding them small amounts of hard-boiled egg yolk paste twice daily.

It is important to note that, while baby guppies will eat anything that floats past them, overfeeding them will cause them to develop swim bladder problems, which can be fatal.

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