What Do Guppies Eat – A Look Into Its Dietary Habits & Food

What Do Guppies Eat
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Last Updated: March 22, 2023 by Flora Gibbins

Guppy fish are omnivorous pets! They eat both plant and meat-based foods. 

Does it surprise you?

This fact ranks them among the best fish for casual and professional fish keepers because feeding them is very easy. Besides their uncomplicated feeding, their robust and colorful nature has made them household pets.

Let’s explore what it is like to feed guppies.

What Do Guppies Eat?       

Guppies require all the nutrients to live healthily. Baby guppies, especially, need more protein-dense foods for their growth. This is not to say that grown guppies need less of it. Feeding these two clusters will require different proportions, as you’re about to learn shortly.

Guppies eat fish flakes, veggie pellets, freeze-dried foods, vegetables, meat, and sometimes live food such as shrimp. They also eat soft algae and insect larvae. 

Adult guppies still consume blood worms and vinegar eels like a roundworm and tubifex worms. Be keen on the proportions you feed them because of the high-fat content in blood worms.

What Does Guppy Fry Eat?

For baby guppies, give them foods like baby brine shrimp, high-quality crushed guppy flakes, daphnia, and micro worms.

Be sure to give guppies food in small quantities for easy digestion. It saves them from having blocked intestines. Also, remember they have tiny mouths, so watch the size of food items you put in the aquarium.

What Should You Feed Your Guppies?

Guppies’ diet is entirely different in the wild. They, for instance, eat mosquito larvae and other water larvae. On the other hand, the pet fish get more commercial fish food, fish flakes, and homemade food such as the beef heart.

Have you noticed how guppies devour brine shrimp? It must be their staple food! Since they are more wholesome and nutritious, give adult guppies freshly hatched brine shrimp ones.

The bottom line is that for guppies to stay healthy, a diet that includes nutrients, proteins, and essential minerals are necessary.

Breaking Down the Types of Food for Guppies

1. Readily Available Fish Food

Readily Available Fish Food

Commercially available processed food like fish flakes is the best option, especially if you’re a beginner. They are readily well-balanced, so you don’t have to worry about the nutrient ratio.

2. Homemade Guppy Food

Homemade Guppy Food

Most homemade meals entail human food such as egg yolk, chopped beef heart, and chicken breast. Guppies are always happy to feast with you.  Feeding human food to guppies is okay.

To improve their resistance to infections, you can also prepare vegetables like peas, lettuce, boiled spinach, zucchini, green beans, spirulina, and mustard greens.

See, guppies aren’t so different from us after all; they also need the vitamins from vegetables to stay healthy!

3. Freeze-dried Foods

Freeze-dried Foods

There are more nutrients packed in foods like brine shrimp and bloodworms.

4. Bites for Guppies

Bites for Guppies

Brine shrimp, blood worms, mosquito larvae, and flake food are among the treats you can feed your pet guppy on a few occasions. More than the rest, baby guppies require frequent feeding but in small amounts.

These treats contain additional yet beneficial nutrients required in their diet. You can also give guppies the treats either in live form or freeze-dried.

How Often Should Guppies Eat?  

Knowing when to feed your guppies can be tricky, especially if you have both adult and guppy fry. However, it would be best to establish a routine so that you don’t overfeed or starve them. 

Feed adult guppies once or twice daily.

Leaving them famished for long is very dangerous because the adult ones can eat the fry. They can also get aggressive towards each other. I mean, aren’t we all irrational when hungry? With the once or twice-a-day feeding schedule, I hope you now see the need to give them nutritionally dense fish food.

The goal is for them to be full and healthy, not to survive on scarcity. If anything, wild guppies get more food by nibbling on plant matter such as algae and water minerals fruit every minute. So now that you’ve chosen to pet them, feed them well.

How Frequent Should Baby Guppies Eat?

As for the guppy fry, you need to feed them more frequently as they are still developing. They need to eat as often as five to eight times a day. Since their bodies are undergoing rapid changes, proteins should be the focal part of their meal.

Remember, since they are still tiny, they can only eat so much. This justifies the frequency with which you’ll need to feed them.

Dispense their meals in small portions. If you overfeed, most guppy food will remain uneaten, floating as dirt in the fish tank. Also, underfeeding can be detrimental to their growth and overall health even in adulthood.

There’s a caveat, though, that frequently feeding them isn’t a pass to overfeeding whether you’re dealing with grown guppies or fry. 

It’s a miscalculation that can cause health problems like blocked intestines. Overfeeding makes guppies susceptible to swim bladder disease. Most fish will always open their tiny mouths as long as you provide the food for them, so it’s upon you to establish a limit.

What Environmental Factors Can Affect Guppies’ Feeding Behavior?

1. Tank Temperature

Tank Temperature

Remember, you’re dealing with tropical fish. The tank temperature should maintain at around 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

How does a fish tank affect the feeding habit of your fish pet? Low temperatures may fool you into thinking that they have eaten enough. These fish eat less at cooler temperatures as this slows down their metabolism. Feeding fish flakes in the morning and giving them live food in the evening sustains guppy fish pets.

Avoid higher temperatures by all means. Fish dying is a predicament we don’t want to deal with.

2. Tank Cleanliness

Tank Cleanliness

I can never stress this enough, a dirty tank is a recipe for disaster. Maintain clean, clear waters, use filters, and consider partial water changing every so often. Don’t put excess food in the tank, as the left-over will only make up for more dirt.

3. Lighting


Guppies need light and darkness in equal measure. Too much light can trigger stress levels, while murky or dark conditions can cause detrimental spine problems. Ensure the aquarium is well lit, but also ensure your little fella in there has a dark period of between seven to eight hours of proper rest.

If you don’t weigh these environmental factors, you’ll expose your pet to stress and pathogens. With time you’ll notice poor feeding patterns, and if not corrected early enough, you’re likely to lose your pet.

What Are the Benefits of Feeding Guppies Properly?

Let me lead you to some of them:

  • Giving your guppies the best foods makes them healthy and strong. The required nutrients enhance their colorful nature and make them resistant to infections.
  • Live foods provide high proteins, while plant matter has the necessary macronutrients.
  • Correct feeding also increases their lifespan.
  • Wild guppies eat plant matter and minerals from the freshwater and other food varieties. If your pets are picky eaters, they’ll likely enjoy live food as their cousins in moving waters.

Watch This!

Fun Fact: Aren’t you curious about your pet guppy’s life span? Proceed to our blog entitled, “How Long Do Guppies LIve: 9 Elements That Dictate Their Life” after reading this article!

Frequently  Asked Questions   

How long can guppies go without food?

Guppies are hardy and resilient pets. Healthy and fully developed ones can hold out for up to two weeks without food. Although this is not a guide to how long guppies can go without being fed, sometimes life happens, and you can’t make it home in time to feed them.

In the case of travel plans, leaving guppy treats such as fish flakes in the aquarium goes a long way to sustain them.

How can I know when my guppies are hungry?

Guppy fish are ravenous eaters who will gladly nimble food away when served, whether hungry or not. Knowing when they are hungry will require you to watch their behavior up close.

Here are some leads:

  • When they swim and tend to stay at the top of the tank. This is likely to happen when you’ve conditioned them to feed at specific times.
  • Inactivity. Guppies are naturally vibrant and playful. Should you notice plummeting energy levels, they’re probably hungry.
  • Displaying aggression. Although there could be other reasons for being violent, hungry fish will project their stress through violence. 
  • Digging into the fish tank. When you notice the tiny guy looking through the substrate, from one corner to the other, it could be searching for food.

Can guppies eat goldfish food?                                                                          

Yes. Goldfish is one of the various specialized foods that your guppies can eat. However, it shouldn’t be their regular meal. The high-fat contents in goldfish flakes are dangerous if taken often. It means guppies should only eat goldfish flakes only when necessary.

Do guppy fish eat plants?

Yes, they do. These are omnivorous pets, so it’s safe to say anything goes. Funny enough, they find algae and decaying plants more delectable. You can sometimes find them nibbling on aquarium plants, which could signify a lack of essential minerals.

Do guppies eat bread?

Yes, bread is yet another human food that guppies happily eat. However, you should probably avoid it because many ingredients go into baking bread. The yeast, sugar, artificial coloring, and corn syrup in bread aren’t good for your pet guppies.


When it comes to feeding guppies, there are many options now that they are omnivores. Their feeds are available commercially, human food within your home, and freeze-dry ones.

Maintaining a clean environment and the right aquarium temperatures is vital for them to have a wholesome life.

While feeding guppies isn’t complicated, learning and establishing a feeding plan is important. Also, be aware of what a balanced diet should entail at different levels of growth. Never underestimate the impacts of both overfeeding and underfeeding them too.

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