Feeder Guppies

Bindel2303
  • #1
Ok, so I'm re-setting up my tank and to test it I got some feeder guppies because they are the most similar in temperament and durability as the platys I was planing on buying, and really cheap. However after some reading I think I want to stick with guppies for the time being. I have a few questions about them that I could not find answered anywhere online, at least on with any assurance. For one, what makes them different from other guppies? Is it just that they are not as 'fancy' and because they are so prolific there are so many of them it is cheap to make them feeders? Also are they just adolescent guppies that will grow to the size of regular guppies or are they normally just a smaller fish than other guppies? Either way, at about what size should I expect them to reach sexual maturity?

Thanks for all the help!
 
Austin {Aquarist}
  • #2
hmmm

hey bindel :] I respect that you got some inexpensive fish before you got expensive fish as I did with feeder guppies. I eventually decided to just keep my ten gallon tank (first tank) a guppy tank. Most feeders are called endlers livebearers. They are more like what you would find in the wild than fancy guppies because fancy guppies have been selectively breed to show off there fancy tails and flashy colors. My endlers males only get about 3/4 of an inch long(so to answer your question this is as big as the endlers males will get unlike the fancy guppy males). My female is currently about 1.2 inches long and will keep growing I think. The males reach sexual maturity when you see the males start to show growth of the analfin or "gonopodiom" spelll check pleasE?

GOOD LUCK WIT YOUR GUPPIES :]
 
Bindel2303
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
I don't think these are endlers. I have done as much reading as the internet allows on endlers and they don't fit the profile, for one their gonopodiom are a little different, also I think elders are supposed to get bigger and have as flashy of color as guppies. Elders and guppies are most likely two different species, that can inner bread, so its unlikely they are those. Also it is rare to find pure endlers in stores, if anything they are high breads, but I still doubt that. I'm pretty sure these are guppies I'm just wondering if there is something that separates them from other guppies.
 
NewBKaeK
  • #4
@Austin: guppies and endlers are two different species

Fancy guppies are more colorful than the feeder/wild guppy. That's pretty much the only way to tell them apart. Generally speaking the 'feeders' would be the culls from a guppy spawn.

Feeder guppies are the exact same species as fancy guppies. Their color is just not as genetically developed as a fancy guppy.
 
miraloma
  • #5
I just bought some feeder guppies from my LFS. They are small but with amazing patterns, pink, neon green, yellow, etc. They don't look quite as nice as the regular guppies I've had in the past in that their fins are kind of irregularly shaped. Possible that it's because they've been neglected and raised in the feeder tank. I do hope they get a bit bigger. They are all about 1/2" or smaller. I got 8 male and 1 female. I don't exactly want a tank full of them but would like to see what their babies look like.

I've been looking online for the expensive Endler's. Thanks for the feeder guppy idea. This is _way_ cheaper - 16/$1.
 
1gamma45
  • #6
This is a great site for all kinds of info on all kinda of fish the people are cool too.

But I have found guppies.com to be a more informational site on guppies. Its all they do and have everything and anything you could ever want to know about guppies.

If you can't get the info you want here try there.
 
JakeTeque
  • #7
How big should Oscars get before I can start feeding them feeder guppies? Mine are about 2 1/2 inches... Thanks everyone!
 
Chief_waterchanger
  • #8
When he looks like he is big enough to get one in his mouth that should do. I would be very careful of the feeders you buy and would house them seperately for atleast a week or two to make sure no diseases are apparent. You can do this in a plastic tote (the big ones you can buy that are like 20-30 gallons.)

We've recently been hitting some fishstores that have reputations as the best in our area, only to find lymphocystis floating in their systems. Theoretically most US stores buy from the same farms in Florida, so just telling you this to be sure it isn't something present in the farms. (It more than likely was present in the store's system before introducing those feeders, so the farms are probably not affected, but just incase.)
 
sirdarksol
  • #9
Going to throw in my standard suggestion that, if you can do it, you raise your own feeders. At the very least, house them, as CWC suggested, for a couple of weeks, keep their water clean and feed them well.

The reason for this is that the fish sold as feeders at the fish store are kept in horrible conditions (usually. I'm sure there's a fish store out there somewhere that sells feeders that have been raised well), which strips most of the nutrients from their bodies. Thus, they are the equivalent of fast food to fish. Your fish will live on them (barring disease), but will be so much brighter and more active if you feed them healthy feeders.
 
RandomKayos
  • #10
Going to throw in my standard suggestion that, if you can do it, you raise your own feeders. At the very least, house them, as CWC suggested, for a couple of weeks, keep their water clean and feed them well.

The reason for this is that the fish sold as feeders at the fish store are kept in horrible conditions (usually. I'm sure there's a fish store out there somewhere that sells feeders that have been raised well), which strips most of the nutrients from their bodies. Thus, they are the equivalent of fast food to fish. Your fish will live on them (barring disease), but will be so much brighter and more active if you feed them healthy feeders.

I agree with this completely. Raising feeders is so easy and very inexpensive. I keep my feeders in about a 30 gallon tote. I have a cheap filter, a cheap Spot lamp, the kind that clamps onto anything and a large amount of plants, Put a grow light in the lamp, put your cuttings in the water and once you get the cycle going you just add feeders and feed them. The plants will keep the nitrites down and the bacteria in the filter will convert the ammonia and complete the cycle.

I even keep a few mesh bags with gravel in them so the gravel can pick up the cycling bacteria. If I need an emergency hospital tank or want to set up a new tank in a hurry I can grab some gravel, change the filter and put the used one in the new tank, grab plants and set up a new tank with fresh water in an hour or less. 15 minutes for a hospital tank in another plastic tub.

Meanwhile, that feeder tank is busy producing feeders, babies hide in the plants and you scoop and feed the feeders at will. And I keep this in a convienent out of the way corner on the floor.

RK
 
Chief_waterchanger
  • #11
RK, I love your methods.

Another tip when using feeder guppies and raising your own...

Only feed the male feeder guppies to the fish. Your females store sperm for upwards of 6 months and can continue producing fry without males around, so save the females to produce yourself some more feeders.
 
RandomKayos
  • #12
RK, I love your methods.

Another tip when using feeder guppies and raising your own...

Only feed the male feeder guppies to the fish. Your females store sperm for upwards of 6 months and can continue producing fry without males around, so save the females to produce yourself some more feeders.

Thanks, I agree with this advice as well and another advantage to breeding your own is you can pull the size you need. Once your brood tank is at full production, you will have everything from guppy fry to adults. Pick the size you need for your hungry fish.

I would also like to add a caution here. Feeder guppy males can develope some very nice colors. Beware the temptation to set up a another tank to keep the best looking ones.....MTS is always lurking out there somewhere.
 
sirdarksol
  • #13
Look at it the other way around: It's a guppy breeding program and the culls go to the good purpose of feeding other fish. ;D
 
Darlene
  • #14
Ok, I know this post is a little old, but I have a question. We want to have some type of feeder fish for when our Jacks and Oscar (when we get him) get big enough. Anyway are feeder guppies, different than the ones you get at the store? The ones I see the most are the ones with the pretty tails.
 
Shawnie
  • #15
I wouldnt use feeders from stores unless you raise them yourself....hole in the head disease is rampid on oscars when fed bad feeders

but you can raise them in a 10 or 20 gal tank on your own and then you will know they are healthy feeders

and yes fancy guppies are not feeders and most feeders are the cramed gold/brown fish that have hundreds to a 20 gal or so..or they keep them in the back room
 
Darlene
  • #16
Thanks Shawnie, I knew from reading on here not to used feeders from the store, I guess I should have put that in my post with the question. Hubby and I were thinking of just using our 20 gallon tank to house feeder fish, I just wasn't sure what ones to get to breed our own.

I don't really want to use goldfish for the feeders, which are the ones I see in the store all the time. I will have to look around for the feeder guppies.
 
sirdarksol
  • #17
Feeder guppies are generally the culled guppies from fancy-tail breeding. Nutritionally, there's no difference between the two, and it's likely that if you get feeders and breed them, they'll periodically produce what appears to be a fancy-tail.
 
Darlene
  • #18
Thanks, I was thinking of getting male guppies for my tank anyway, so maybe I will get a both male and female and just use our Jacks and Oscar as a way to keep the population of guppies down It may seem mean to some I guess, but I really like some of the live bearers, but after having so many mollie fry when we had them I just don't know what to do with all the fry...and our other fish will like live food.
 
TheFishGirl
  • #19
Hardy vs Unhealthy

I've read both about feeder guppies since I started my research a mere two weeks ago — I have a LFS who sells feeder guppies — never been there in person yet but they have reviews that their fish are very healthy and some actually only buy fish from them instead of the chain stores.

My question is IF the feeders are unhealthy what steps could I do to treat the water or fish ... or just treat them anyway?

Has anyone personally bought feeder guppies? This might sound like a stupid question but I'll ask anyway, feeders do come in both male and female genders, right?

Any experience you've had with feeder guppies is welcome in the comments below!!
 
Big Red
  • #20
Feeder guppies are noramlly used as simply feeders. Theyre normally healthier than more common feeder goldfish or rosy red. As for keeping them as pets you can but quality is generally not as good as guppies for sell. They may not be as colorful but some times people find nice ones.

Yes to males and female's.

As for medicating fish or water it depends on specific situation. Ive bought them for their purpose. Not for a family pet.
 
TheFishGirl
  • #21
I want them for their bland color seeing I'm trying to create a community tank with one of my betta's. Sure they can be kept with the fun colors but better chance at it working with the bland ones. I'm honestly still undecided which I want to pick up.
 
TexasDomer
  • #22
While I understand where you're coming from with the bland coloration, I still wouldn't keep any guppies with bettas. Guppies (like most of the common livebearers) are obnoxious and mobby during feeding time, and this can really stress out your betta.
 
TheFishGirl
  • #23
While I understand where you're coming from with the bland coloration, I still wouldn't keep any guppies with bettas. Guppies (like most of the common livebearers) are obnoxious and mobby during feeding time, and this can really stress out your betta.

All of my betta's have their own individual tanks anyway, I'm just trying to fill a vacant 10 gallon. So if it didn't work out, betta can go back to original tank
 
Landos
  • #24
I've bought feeder guppies to keep in my 20long and a couple always die from the batch I get.
 
TexasDomer
  • #25
So what will clue you in to know that it's not working out? Your betta may not attack the guppies, but that doesn't mean he's not stressed. Fish don't show stress easily, so you likely won't notice until your betta is very stressed. They're not community fish, and prefer to be alone.

A 10 gal is too small to keep bettas with other fish anyway. It doesn't give the fish room to escape. A 20 gal is the minimum for a betta community.
 

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