Betta fish are popular aquarium fish, sometimes known as Siamese fighting fish but scientifically known as Betta splendens. Being a labyrinth fish, they possess a special organ which allows them to extract oxygen from the air, which is a great adaptation to living in water without much oxygen.
Sadly, this very adaptation means they can survive in water that would kill most other species of fish, leaving them open to being one of the most neglected pet fish.
Hopefully, if you’re reading this blog, you’ll be wanting the best for your fish and you’ll already been keeping your betta in a full cycled, healthy aquarium. But what should you feed your betta to keep him or her in the best of health?
The foods available to you depend on where in the world you live, but the number one rule is variety.
Bettas are renowned for being fussy feeders, with some individuals fixating on one brand or type of food (one of my bettas is a pellet addict!) so giving your betta a wide range of foods is great for enrichment and for preventing fussy eating habits.
With that in mind, here are my personal top 4 foods available in Europe for your betta buffet!
1) Repashy Grub Pie
Repashy Grub Pie is my go to food for all my bettas and is part of the Repashy gel fish food range. Unlike traditional fish foods, Repashy gel foods come in the form of a powder that must be mixed with hot water and allowed to set into a firm gel. It can then be cut into small cubes and stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or the freezer for six months.
On the surface, Repashy foods appear more expensive than other foods, but once made into gel the food is very economical. The first ingredient in Repashy Grub Pie is insect meal and it contains a wide range of vitamins and minerals.
All of my bettas love the taste and texture of Repashy Grub Pie, although it may take some individuals a little while to realise it is edible if they’ve never had a gel food before.
Many betta owners worry about their fish becoming bloated or constipated from eating pellets or flakes, so feeding a gel food can be a great way to make sure this doesn’t happen.
To find your nearest stockist, visit www.store.repashy.com/
2) Fluval Bug Bites
Fluval Bug Bites are relatively new to the fish food market and are made of sustainably produced soldier fly larvae. Many of us are looking to reduce our impact on the planet and Fluval Bug Bites is a great way to feed our fish while not damaging the environment.
Aside from the environmental plus points, Fluval Bug Bites are devoured by all of my bettas, although they do have a tendency to sink, so it’s best not to feed too much at once. The tropical formula comes in two sizes, medium and small. I prefer the larger granule size of the medium variety but it’s worth trying both to see which your betta prefers.
Fluval do produce a betta specific Bug Bites formula but as yet this isn’t available in Europe.
I love the way it provides an easy to eat texture without clouding the water while providing some great nutrients for my fish!
For more information, please visit: www.fluvalaquatics.com/us/bug-bites/
3) Hikari Betta Bio Gold
Hikari have been a leading brand for fish keepers for many years and their Betta Bio-Gold pellet is certainly a popular choice. The main ingredient in Hikari Betta Bio-Gold is fish meal and it contains 38% protein. Some betta owners worry about the use of wheat flour in this produc t, however, for novice betta owners, or those that may over feed their betta, I believe this ingredient choice may help to prevent constipation and fatty liver disease.
I personally have found Betta Bio-Gold to be one of the best products for fussy betta fish that won’t eat or that are too sick to have much of an appetite.
The pellet size is perfect for most bettas but it may be worth soaking the pellets first for bettas that are prone to bloating.
For more information, please visit www.hikari.info/tropical/t_14.html
4) Tetra Betta LarvaSticks
Tetra Betta LarvaSticks are widely available in mainland Europe and are designed to replicate the shape of a betta’s natural insect prey. As predators, betta fish would naturally hunt small insects and larvae and unless you are feeding live food, it’s important to find ways to provide behavioural enrichment. Being made by leading fish food brand, Tetra, they provide a complete meal for betta fish, but I suggest feeding these occasionally so the novelty of their larva shape doesn’t wear off.
For more information, please visit, www.tetra.net/en/produkte/tetra-betta-larvasticks