Many Siamese fighting fish owners often ask what is the best betta fish food available. Well, the best would be insect larvae and small microorganisms to offer as food for betta fish.
But, many of us do not have a supply of insect larvae sitting around! Before we look at the different types of betta food, I would like to address one important thing.
Betta fish can not live off of the roots of plants in a vase. This practice has resulted in terrible outcomes due to marketing that betta fish can survive off the roots plant in a vase. Betta fish need to be fed food specially made for them.
How much and how often to feed betta fish?
Betta fish can and will often over eat. Like most fish, they will continue eating if allowed, so as a general rule, feed lightly at first and gauge how much your fish will eat at one feeding. A betta will need no more than a very small pinch of food. You do not want to overfeed because this can lead to digestion problems and polluted water.
I, like many freshwater tropical fish keepers practice fasting our fish once per every week or two. I usually withhold food once per week on certain species so they can clean out their digestive system. Some species have a slow digestive system and this allows for ever thing to be cleansed out. Bettas can go several days without food.
Feeding Betta Fish When On Vacation
If you are going away for 1-4 days, you do not have to worry about your betta. It will be just fine. Do not overfeed before you leave because the betta will just pollute the water faster.
If you are leaving for 5 or more days, I suggest you get someone you can trust to feed every other day or so. Be sure to show them exactly how much to feed. You may even want to pre-measure your feedings and put them in a daily medicine dispenser. Often the people that you get to help will overfeed and sometimes kill your fish.
You may even want to purchase an automatic fish feeder. These are to be used on aquariums.
I use these often on my tanks and I highly recommend them.
Types of Betta Food
There are a number of different types of betta fish food available on the market today. Below I will discuss the options available. I strong suggest that you mix and match these different types of food often so your betta will receive a healthy and varied diet.
I suggest finding a staple beta fish food such as a high quality pellet or flake and feeding this 3-4 times per week. Supplement 2-3 times per week with the other different types of betta food that I will cover below.
Feeding betta fish pellets is an excellent option because beta fish food pellets are generally less messy and just easier to feed. Flakes tend to dirty the water faster and a good portion of your flakes end up crushed therefore they often become useless.
Freeze Dried Betta Fish Food
Freeze-dried fish foods offer excellent nutritional value and your betta fish will love it! Freeze-dried foods also give you a way to dose vitamins or medications. The medicaton or vitamins easily soak into the beta fish food and this allows you to easily administer to your betta’s needs. Simply put a small amount of food in an empty bowl or cup and then dose as the manufacturer’s instructions. Allow food to soak for 15 minutes and then feed your betta.
Freeze Dried Blood Worms are the perfect treat for your pet betta fish.
Freeze-dried betta food should be given as a supplement to their staple diet. In general, you can feed this type of fish food 2-3 times per week.
Betta Fry Food
If you do have the opportunity to breed and raise Betta fry you will need to have a special food to keep the fry alive during the first weeks. In nature, the Betta fry eat small insect larvae and other micro-organisms in the water column. We do not have these in our home aquarium so it is up to you to ensure these fry do not starve. Please see the following products to help ensure that your Betta fry survive the first few weeks of life.
One of the most important things you can do to keep your Betta healthy is to offer high quality Betta fish food. Remember to mix things up and supplement with the above mentioned types of betta fish food.