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I got my first guppy over 30 years ago. Since then I have kept, bred, and enjoyed almost every color strain on the market. One thing I have learned is, for bright, healthy guppies, what you feed them is really important.
So you want to make some homemade food for your guppies? Below I have some great ideas for homemade guppy food. Let’s be honest, homemade food is not as convenient as a tub of flake food, but it can be great fun feeding homemade food, and it also presents the opportunity to give your guppies some nutrients they may not be getting from their commercial foods.
What Do Guppies Eat In The Wild?
Guppies are not fussy feeders. In fact, they could easily be classed as scavengers. In the wild, they would eat just about anything that they can fit in their mouths. They will eat snails and worms, waterborne creatures like daphnia or mosquito larvae as well as baby fish and bugs that might fall into the water.
Knowing that they are not fussy helps us look for foods that we can make at home, but it also shows us that in the wild, they have a hugely varied diet, and as such, need a wide selection of vitamins and minerals to get by.
Good quality flake or pellet food may go some way towards fulfilling all those needs, but more variety is almost always better.
What Live Foods Can We Produce At Home For Our Guppies?
One of the easiest live foods we can produce at home is mosquito larvae.
Take a 5-gallon bucket of old tank water and set it outside. Within just a few days mosquitoes will have found the water and laid their eggs in it. These eggs soon hatch and the water will be filled with little wriggling larvae. These larvae can be scooped out with a net and fed directly to your guppies.
Brine shrimp is another live food that can be cultured at home. A basic setup involving a brine shrimp hatchery, an air pump, some salt, and some brine shrimp eggs will allow you to produce an almost endless supply of newly hatched brine shrimp to feed your guppies.
Microworms and Vinegar Eels can also be cultured at home to create a reliable and nutritious source of guppy food. Both microworms and vinegar eels make excellent guppy fry food.
What Other Foods Can You Feed To Your Guppies?
If culturing live foods to feed to your guppies doesn’t appeal to you, what about some of the suggestions below?
Guppies will spend all day long picking at green beans. Canned green beans sink right away, making them ideal for guppies to peck at. Fresh green beans will need to be blanched first to soften them otherwise the guppies won’t get past the beans’ tough outer skin.
Broccoli is another vegetable guppies love to pick at. Only place a small piece in the aquarium. Your guppies will pick all the tiny ‘flower heads’ off each of the florets of broccoli.
Egg yolk is really high in protein, which makes it an ideal food for growing guppies, especially fry. Crumble a very small piece of cooked egg yolk into the aquarium and watch your guppies go nuts for it. Egg yolk will quickly spoil your aquarium water if the guppies don’t eat it straight away, so only ever add a little at a time.
Worms and Mealworms
Both garden worms and mealworms make a great addition to your guppies diet. The worms will need chopping up into smaller pieces first otherwise they will be too large for the guppies to eat.
There are stories on the internet of mealworms burrowing out of the stomachs of fish that have eaten them. To be honest, I have never seen this happen ever. For your guppies, you will need to chop the mealworms up anyway, so there is no way a mealworm chopped into 4 pieces can eat its way out of a fish!
Guppies will pick at small pieces of cucumber. They won’t really eat the skin, but the watery inner flesh will be eaten readily. Incidentally, if you keep a bristlenose pleco with your guppies, it will love cucumber too.
Much like cucumber, guppies won’t really eat the skin, but they will relish the watery flesh. As with all these foods, only ever add a tiny amount of watermelon to your aquarium at any one time.
You might be surprised at how many homemade foods you can feed your guppies. I don’t think any of the foods on the list above will ever replace a good quality flake food or pellet, but it can be fun to try something new.
Whatever food you feed your guppies, always feed little and often. It is better they eat everything you put in the tank than spoiling the water by overfeeding them.