Guppies' First Meals: When And What?

when do baby guppies start eating

Guppies are live-bearing fish that breed easily and often. Baby guppies, or guppy fry, can start eating within just a few hours of being born. They are born fully formed and able to swim and take on food almost immediately. Guppy fry have a voracious appetite and a fast metabolism, so they need to be fed multiple times a day.

Characteristics Values
Time to start eating 2-3 hours after birth
Frequency of eating 5-10 times daily
Food Brine shrimp, microworms, daphnia, vinegar eels, crushed flake food, egg yolk, beef heart paste


Baby guppies can eat the same food as adults, but it must be crushed into smaller pieces

Guppies are live-bearing fish, giving birth to live fry that are immediately mobile and able to eat. In fact, baby guppies can eat the same food as adults, but it must be crushed into smaller pieces.

Guppies typically eat flake foods, which are easy to feed to the fish and can be bought ready-made for small fry or crushed into a powder for the babies. It is best to choose a high-protein flake food that includes vegetable matter to ensure your guppies get all the minerals and vitamins they need.

Guppies also thrive on live foods like baby brine shrimp, microworms, daphnia, or vinegar eels. If these are not available, then freeze-dried foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, and tubifex are a good alternative. These freeze-dried options provide fat, protein, and other nutrients that will increase the growth rate of fry.

You can also make fry food at home. For example, you can create live cultured foods such as brine shrimp, vinegar eels, and daphnia. Egg yolk paste is another option that is protein-rich and will promote the growth of your fry. However, be careful with how much and how often you feed your fry with egg yolk as it can foul the water.

Guppies have a fast metabolism and can take on food multiple times a day. It is recommended to feed them 5-10 times daily for optimal growth. However, for hobbyists, a daily feeding suffices.

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Baby brine shrimp is a good food option for baby guppies

Baby brine shrimp is a great first meal for baby guppies, as it is high in protein and fat, which helps the fry grow faster and bigger. Guppy fry can eat live, frozen, or freeze-dried brine shrimp. Live brine shrimp can be cultured at home using a hatchery, which is a good option for those who want to ensure a constant food source for their guppy fry.

While baby brine shrimp is a nutritious option for guppy fry, it should not be the only food in their diet. It is important to provide variety, including flake foods, freeze-dried bloodworms, and tubifex, to ensure the fry receive a good balance of nutrients. Guppy fry can be fed multiple times a day, but it is important not to overfeed them.

In addition to a well-balanced diet, guppy fry also require a safe and comfortable environment to thrive. It is recommended to use a separate breeding tank or protective mesh dividers to keep the fry safe from potential predators, including adult guppies. The tank should have ample space for the fry to grow, gentle filtration, and live plants for hiding.

By providing a nutritious diet and a suitable environment, you can ensure the optimal growth and development of your baby guppies.


Guppies are live-bearing, so they give birth to fully-formed offspring that can eat almost immediately

Guppies are live-bearing, so they give birth to fully formed offspring that can eat almost immediately. This is in contrast to many other fish species, which lay eggs that hatch into larvae that feed on their yolk sack before starting to take on food. Guppy fry are born able to swim and seek shelter, and they will start to search for food within a few hours.

The birthing process for guppies can last a few hours but may extend over a couple of days. The mother guppy will seek out a secluded spot in the aquarium and may appear to be swimming in place or shivering—these are contractions. Guppies typically have between 20 and 60 babies, or fry, at one time.

Fry are vulnerable, and in the initial hours after birth, they will seek refuge among plants or tank decorations. It is natural for the mother guppy to eat her babies, so it's important to remove her as soon as possible after birth. Guppies will also eat their own offspring in a home aquarium, a phenomenon known as filial cannibalism. This may be because guppies are weeding out fry that are less adept at surviving, or because the female guppy is replenishing her fat storage.

To prevent filial cannibalism, guppy fry should be kept separate from adult guppies. This can be done by using a breeding box, which is a plastic container or mesh designed to be installed inside the aquarium. The pregnant female is placed inside the breeding box, which allows water to flow in and out but keeps adult guppies out. Fry can be kept in the breeding box for up to two weeks, after which they can be released into the main tank.

Another option is to set up a separate tank for the pregnant female guppy. As well as being a more expensive method, this also requires matching the water parameters of the new tank with those of the home aquarium.

A third method to prevent cannibalism is to ensure the aquarium has a lot of live plants and hiding spots. This is not as fail-safe as the other methods, as not all fry will be able to hide, but it does have the added benefit of providing food for the fry and helping to control toxin levels in the aquarium.

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Guppies can eat dried blood worms, which are full of nutrients and tasty to baby guppies

Guppies are live-bearing fish that breed easily and often, producing a lot of fry. Guppy fry are ready to eat almost immediately after birth, and their nutritional requirements are similar to those of adult guppies. Guppies are omnivores, and their diet should be rich in both plant and animal matter.

Other nutrients that bloodworms provide include essential amino acids, carbohydrates, and lipids, which can enhance the bright colours of guppies. Minerals such as calcium and potassium in bloodworms support bone health and the smooth operation of muscles and nerves, respectively. However, it is important to feed bloodworms in moderation as part of a balanced diet for guppies.

Bloodworms can be sourced in various forms, including live, frozen, and freeze-dried. Live bloodworms are the most nutritious but carry the risk of transmitting diseases or parasites. Frozen bloodworms are a safer alternative as freezing kills pathogens, and they can be stored conveniently. Freeze-dried bloodworms have an extended shelf life and are easy to feed, but their nutritional value may be reduced compared to frozen or live bloodworms.

When preparing bloodworms for guppies, hygiene and proper handling are crucial. Frozen bloodworms should be thawed in tank water before feeding to prevent a sudden temperature drop in the aquarium. Live bloodworms should be rinsed thoroughly under cold water to remove any potential bacteria or parasites. Freeze-dried bloodworms can be rehydrated in tank water before feeding. It is important to feed guppies an appropriate amount of bloodworms, typically once or twice a week, to avoid overfeeding and potential water quality issues.


Guppies can be born in a separate tank or container, or in a breeding box inside the main tank

Guppies are live-bearing fish, giving birth to live young, or fry, instead of laying eggs. A female guppy can deliver between 20 and 60 fry in a single birthing event, which can occur roughly every 30 days. When a female guppy is close to giving birth, she will often seek out a secluded spot in the aquarium. This birthing process can last a few hours, but in some cases, it can extend over a couple of days.

Upon birth, guppy fry are immediately mobile and will seek shelter within the aquarium. They will appear more active within a few hours and will venture out in search of food. Guppy fry are vulnerable in their initial hours, so it is important to provide them with a safe space to grow and develop. One way to ensure the safety of the fry is to use a separate tank or container for the pregnant female guppy to give birth. This can be a temporary container, such as a larger glass jar or plastic container, or a dedicated breeding tank.

Another option is to use a breeding box, a small container made of mesh or plastic that can be placed directly into the main tank. The breeding box allows water to circulate, maintaining water quality, while keeping the fry safe inside. Once the female has finished giving birth, she can be removed, leaving the fry secure within the box. This method allows for the fry to remain in the same tank as the adults while being protected from potential predators, including their parents.

Whether in a separate tank or a breeding box, it is important to provide the fry with ample space to grow and develop, as well as gentle filtration to prevent them from being sucked in. Live plants, such as guppy grass, hornwort, java moss, and the roots of water lettuce, can provide essential hiding spots and protect the fry from adult fish. These plants also support a balanced ecosystem by absorbing excess nutrients and enhancing water quality.

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Frequently asked questions

Baby guppies, or fry, are ready to eat as soon as 2-3 hours after birth. They can eat the same food as adult guppies, as long as it is crushed into smaller pieces.

Baby guppies have a fast metabolism and can eat multiple times a day. It is recommended to feed them 5-10 times a day for optimal growth.

Baby guppies require a vitamin- and nutrient-rich diet to aid their growth and development. They can eat crushed flake foods, baby brine shrimp, freeze-dried bloodworms, and specialised fry foods.

Healthy baby guppies will be actively swimming around the tank. If they are lying at the bottom of the tank, this may be a sign that they are not getting enough food or are unwell.

It is natural for adult guppies to eat their young, so it is important to separate them. You can use a breeding box, a separate tank, or provide hiding spots with live plants to protect the baby guppies.

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