Can Betta Fish Eat Guppy Fry? 5 Facts You Should Know
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Can Betta fish eat Guppy fry? is actually a quite often question among beginner aquarium owners, and they are often related to two completely different sides. On one hand, some owners are worried whether a Betta will attack their beloved Guppy babies.
However, on the other, some owners who did not really plan on Guppy super-fast reproduction are faced with too many fry and would simply like to get rid of some. Whatever your reason may be for asking such a question, you may find all related answers in this writing.
If you are looking to provide love to both Guppies and Bettas and wish to keep them in a community aquarium, here are the basics you should be aware of.
Male Bettas tend to be more aggressive when compared to their female companions, and they will often want to attack or simply nibble on mature Guppies. Therefore, always keep your male Betta in its own tank, and try matching females with other (adult!) fish instead.
Will Female Bettas Eat Guppy Fry?
Unfortunately, there is no doubtful answer here: all Bettas will hunt down and eat Guppy fry, both male and female. However, a good way to keep such chances to the lowest level possible is to add a single Betta to your Guppy tank.
That way, the Betta will not feel as territorial and will have less reasons to attach fry. But this is no guarantee that she will not decide to feed on them. Bettas are natural hunters and have fun while chasing down other living beings.
Nevertheless, even if there is no Betta in your Guppy tank, there is still a high chance of adult Guppies eating them anyway. That is why protecting your fish babies is necessary in either situation.
Saving Guppy Fry from Betta
Ideally, a pregnant Guppy will be isolated in a breeding tank while giving birth. That way, she will deposit her fry into a safe area with no other adults around, and you can simply remove the mother from such a tank once she is done.
This is the absolutely safest method to save all of your baby Guppies, but not all owners have a spare tank ready. If that is the case, a simple breeding box can do fine, too. This basically consists of a plastic container that gets attached to the inside of the tank.
The mother needs to be placed inside it at the time of giving birth. Immediately after, she needs to be released again with the other fish, but her fry will remain protected. They will still share the same tank water, but with no possibility of an adult getting inside and eating them out.
An important thing to plan ahead is how to save baby Guppies once they start growing. They have to be released into the tank once they reach 2 or 3 weeks of age, while they are still quite small beings because you are otherwise risking of them developing spine deformations.
For those who prefer more “natural” remedies, plants make surprisingly amazing protectors. Indeed, planting enough tall vegetation can often provide so many hiding spots for baby guppies and ultimately save their lives.
However, it is good to keep in mind that this is no guarantee that Bettas will not manage to catch them up. In fact, Bettas are amazing active hunters which are remarkably familiar with swimming around plants.
Can You Feed Guppy Fry to Bettas?
Guppies can breed a lot and they will produce a lot of fry, overpopulating your tank. You could use some of the unwanted guppy fry as feeder fish for your betta.
This certainly is a natural thing and it is okay to feed fry to your adult fish, as long as you are not precisely purchasing a Betta so that it can get rid of too many fry. Guppies fry can provide a super-healthy meal, enriched with protein and other handy nutrients.
However, this should be no replacement for other necessary meals, but more as an occasional delicious treat.
How Many Baby Guppies can a Betta Fish Eat?
The number of baby Guppies that an adult Betta can eat depends entirely on its size. From my experience, some fairly-sized adult Bettas are able of eating even 20 or 30 fry as a single meal.
However, this should not be the proper feeding amount. Betta fish are extremely easy to overfeed and this can ultimately lead to many irreparable health complications.
If you want to feed guppy fry to your betta, I recommended doing that not more than 2 or 3 times per week.
Will Baby Bettas Attack Guppy Fry?
Generally speaking, baby Bettas will not attack other babies. Not because they are being extremely friendly, but simply because Betta fry are exceedingly small and usually match the size of other fry. And when it comes to Guppy fry, they can actually exceed the size of baby Bettas.
That is why fry will usually just ignore each other and live in the same community tank without even bothering each other.
This can, however, change drastically once they grow up and become adults. The safest combination is therefore to have one female Betta into a community tank with a smaller group of male Guppies.
Owning a group of Guppy fish can sometimes become particularly challenging for first-time owners, as most of them are not informed well of their super-fast reproduction.
However, adding a female Betta into their tank does not have to necessarily turn out into massive fry destruction, as there are several ways of keeping your baby Guppies protected and safe. If you want to.
For those owners who are already faced with too many fry and have no option of putting them out for adoption, a good and natural way to decrease their number is by offering them as occasional treats to Bettas.