What Do Baby Bettas Eat?

If fed properly, male betta fish grow long, colorful fins.
i Turquoise bright fish in the glass image by AiMvBaEnR from Fotolia.com

If you wake up one day to find baby betta fish in your tank, don't panic! Raising betta fish fry can be a rewarding experience and, as long as you feed the fish properly, they will quickly grow into beautiful, colorful adult fish.

First Few Days

Baby betta fish typically hatch within 24 to 48 hours after spawning. Once they have hatched, the baby fish will spend the next three to four days absorbing the remainder of their yolk sac. During this time the baby fish will receive nutrients from their yolk sac and may not need a lot of additional food. To make sure your fry have food to eat, should they want it, hardboil an egg and place a small piece of the cooked yolk in a jar of water. Shake the jar vigorously to dissolve the yolk then pour some of the water into your baby betta fish tank. Once the fry become free-swimming, they will be ready to accept small live foods.


Infusoria are a type of liquid fry food that is often recommended for baby betta fish. This type of food is ideal for newly hatched fry because infusoria are small enough to be eaten by baby betta fish. Because the infusoria move, hey are also very attractive to baby fish. Infusoria can be purchased online and in some pet stores or you can raise your own infusoria from culture. To feed infusoria to your baby betta fish, simply use an eyedropper to collect some of the infusoria from the container you purchased them in, or from your culture tank if you raised the infusoria yourself, and squeeze them into your betta tank directly above your baby betta fish.

Brine Shrimp Nauplii

After a few days of eating infusoria your baby betta fish should have grown enough to accept slightly larger foods. Baby brine shrimp, called brine shrimp nauplii, are an excellent food source for young betta fry because they are high in protein and easy to eat. Brine shrimp nauplii can be purchased online or in pet stores and fed to your betta fry following the same procedure used for infusoria. Collect an eyedropper full of water from the brine shrimp container, capturing as many of the brine shrimp nauplii as you can, and squeeze it directly into the betta tank.

Larger Foods

At three to four weeks of age, your baby betta fish will be able to accept a variety of live, frozen and freeze-dried foods in addition to traditional betta pellets. You may continue to feed your baby betta fish brine shrimp nauplii but should begin to vary the diet by adding some finely-crushed frozen and freeze-dried foods such as bloodworms, Daphnia and microworms. When selecting frozen and freeze-dried foods, be sure to purchase from a reputable supplier so you can be sure the food is free of parasites and harmful bacteria. If you want to feed your betta fish some commercially processed foods once in a while you can crush up betta pellets or granules and sprinkle a very small amount into the tank to see if the fry will accept it.

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