First off, let us ask the question ‘How long does it take for guppy fry to grow?’. Guppy fry will normally take between 4 and 6 months to reach adulthood. This timeline depends on a number of factors including quality of food, quality of tank water, and the guppy’s own genetics.
Guppies are by far one of the most popular fish in the world. Their popularity is easy to understand. Guppies are colorful, hardy, and easy to breed. Whether you are breeding your guppies for fun, or because you would like to sell them, the faster the little babies grow into colorful adults, the better!
I have been keeping and breeding guppies for more than 30 years. Over that time I have learned numerous tricks to make sure my baby guppies grow up quickly, yet remain strong, healthy, and colorful.
Ways To Make Guppy Fry Grow Faster
Whenever I am raising guppy babies, I try to implement all of the tips and tricks below.
- Separate the fry into their own tank
- Feed quality foods
- Feed lots of live and frozen foods
- Change lots of water
- Keep the water warm
- Don’t give them too much space
- Use gentle filtration
Separate the fry into their own tank
One of the first things I do when my females drop babies is move the babies into their own tank. By separating the babies from the adults, you reduce the chances of the babies being eaten, but more importantly, you reduce the amount of competition for food.
I like to feed my guppy babies little and often, maybe up to 5 times a day. If the baby guppies don’t have to compete for food, they will undoubtedly grow faster.
Feed guppy fry quality foods
I am a massive fan of using good quality foods for all my fish, but I find giving good quality food to guppy babies is essential. I tend to feed them a combination of crushed-up flake food, First Bites by Hikari, and Bug Bites by Fluval (I have written more about Bug Bites in this article).
As the fry grow, I adjust the size of the food I feed them. A day-old guppy needs micro foods, but by the time they reach 3 months old, they need something more substantial. I recently wrote an article titled Best Homemade Food For Guppies which may be of interest to you.
Feed guppy fry lots of live and frozen foods
Prepared flake foods and pellets are great for guppy fry, but you can’t beat live or frozen foods. At least once a day I feed my guppy babies live or frozen foods. When they are first born I feed newly hatched brine shrimp, moving on to frozen cyclops as the babies grow, then bloodworms or daphnia when they are large enough to eat them.
I have found meaty live or frozen foods are probably the single most important factor when trying to grow my guppy babies quickly.
Changing the water in the guppy fry tank
Needless to say, the more your guppy babies eat, the more waste they create. Whilst we use a filter to convert that waste from harmful ammonia to less harmful nitrate, it is our job as fish keepers to reduce that nitrate by changing water.
I have found that changing 30% of the water in the guppy fry tank every week really helps keep the nitrate levels down. Research has shown that high nitrate levels actually stop fish from growing and developing properly.
Keeping the water warm
Obviously, guppies are tropical fish and they need their water to be warm. Interestingly, the higher the water temperature, the faster the guppy’s metabolism works. The faster their metabolism, the quicker they digest their food and convert it into growth. Essentially, the warmer the water the quicker the guppies grow.
Don’t keep them in too big of a tank
It may seem counterintuitive to intentionally give your guppy babies a small tank to live in, but consider this, the more space guppy babies have, the more energy they will burn swimming around in the pursuit of food.
We want our guppies to eat and convert that food into growth. If they have to swim a relatively long way to get a small piece of food, they will burn more calories than the food gives them.
Guppy babies kept in very large tanks can actually starve to death because they have too much space to roam around in.
Keep filtration gentle
In the same vein as giving baby guppies too much space, if their filter is too powerful they will waste large amounts of energy swimming against the flow the whole time.
In my guppy raising tank, I tend to use a sponge filter connected to an air pump. Sponge filters do a great job of filtering the aquarium water, without creating a huge amount of flow.
If you follow a few simple steps, your guppy fry will grow very quickly. Guppies can go from newborn fry to adults in as little as 4 months given optimum conditions. If your guppies aren’t growing as quickly as you would like, take a look at the list above to see what steps you might be missing.