Swordtail Food: All You Need To Know For Feeding Swordtails Fish

 You recently bought some swordtails, and now you're wondering what to feed them and how. As a beginner, you might think the fish are hungry every time you approach the aquarium. This is partly true, because in nature food is not as abundant as in aquariums. They must constantly hunt for food to maintain their health and reproduction.

Swordtail Food: All You Need To Know For Feeding Swordtails Fish
Swordtail Food: All You Need To Know For Feeding Swordtails Fish

 In aquariums it is a little different. Pet fish are usually overfed which is not good for their health. Apart from health problems, uneaten food as well as well-produced fish waste will lead to poor water quality. Inadequate water parameters will, again, contribute to different diseases. So overfeeding your swordtails can start a chain reaction that can lead to fish kills. Read on to learn more about how and what to feed these aesthetic creatures.

This is an informative article. Nodisk One is not permitted to make a diagnosis or recommend any form of veterinary care. If your pet is in pain or ill, we recommend that you take him to the vet.

What Do Swordtail Eat?

 Swordtail are small tropical freshwater fish that enjoy a variety of food. We've always talked about how proper water parameters and a balanced diet are essential to keeping aquarium fish healthy. I have already discussed the ideal settings for swordtails. Now what do Swordtail eat?

 Swordtail are omnivorous and will naturally eat anything they find in the wild. The common treats include dead fish, algae, microorganisms, insect larvae, and plant debris. However, in the aquarium setting, swordtails do best on a varied diet of commercial foods, occasional high-protein snacks, live or frozen worms, and homemade vegetables.

 You can feed them frozen bloodworms or brine shrimp; live foods such as daphnia or earthworms; egg yolks, beef heart, blanched (boiled) vegetables; or commercial fish food flakes mixed with an algae-based supplement like spirulina. Commercial flakes and pellets are fine for Swordtail, but should be supplemented with live food whenever possible.

What Do Swordtail Fry Eat?

 Do you raise fry but find it difficult to offer them the best? Do not worry; it's natural for all new and old goalies. Swordtail fry care may seem easy, but it's much more complicated if you're new to it. You must take care of your swordtail fry's water conditions, their tank mates, and most importantly their diet if you want them to grow up into healthy adults. So what do swordtail fish fry eat?

 A well-balanced diet is vital for the growth and development of fish. The food they need depends on their stage of growth. swordtail fish fry in the wild will survive mosquito larvae, brine shrimp, and some algae. However, the fry need more care and you should feed them a mix of commercial foods like pellets, frozen foods like bloodworms, and vegetables.

What Do Swordtail Fish Eat In The Wild?

 In the wild, swordtail are found along tropical rivers, streams, and creeks in Central and North America. Swordtails consume small aquatic invertebrates like plankton, daphnia, and plant detritus from their environment.

 Swordtails can also eat algae that grows on rocks or plants in the wild. However, they feed mainly on insects, worms, crustaceans and larvae. They eat tiny crustaceans like shrimp, snails, brine shrimp, daphnia, etc. Swordtails hunt and eat anything that fits into their mouths in rivers, but we cannot do the same in an aquarium.

 Swordtails in the wild have a stronger immune system and can eat anything. But this is not the same home aquarium. So, you should take care of your pet's swordtail and avoid feeding it anything in the wild, like in the wild.

What Do Swordtail Fry Eat In The Wild?

 Swordtail fish are omnivores, meaning they eat both plants and animals. In the wild, swordtail fry need to take care of their own. They are capable of free swimming from birth and don't require parental guidance. swordtail fry eat leaves, algae, seeds, and other small insects, eggs, and larvae found in the water.

Swordtail Fish Diet

 Swordtail are omnivores, meaning they eat a wide range of foods. However, these fish should have a balanced diet of protein-rich foods and vegetables. Swordtails eat algae by default, but you can supplement their diet with peas once or twice a week (peas contain high amounts of plant fiber).

 You should not feed your swordtail meat unless it is properly cooked (uncooked meat can be dangerous to swordtail and make them sick). Also, the optimal diet for swordtail is determined by the age of the fish. Younger swordtails can get away with eating only vegetables, seaweed, or plant matter, while older swordtails should eat more protein and meat.

 It is essential to note that swordtails, like people, require a diverse diet. You wouldn't want to eat the same thing every night for dinner for the rest of your life, so why should your pet be fishing? As often as possible, give him a combination of vegetables, meat and plants.

What Does Swordtail Fry Eat In Aquarium?

 It's best to provide your fry with a balanced diet that will also mimic what they eat in the wild. This way, they will grow into healthy adults in no time. When feeding swordtail fry, you should avoid poor quality feeds as they can cause disease. Although swordtails are omnivores and require a fair share of plant supplements, you should provide them with as much live meat and protein as possible during the growth phases. However, it would help if you were careful when feeding them live beef, as they can transfer parasites to your swordtail.

 Similarly swordtail will also accept human food like egg yolk and other vegetables like squash, zucchini, pumpkin etc. Other than that, there are readily available commercial foods like seaweed wafers, vegetable pellets, and nutrient-rich wafers that swordtail fry require for proper development. Be careful to crush the food into small pieces before feeding them so that your baby fish can eat them quickly without dirtying the tank.

What Should You Feed Your Swordtails?

 Although swordtails will accept a wide variety of foods, you should provide them with a well-balanced, nutrient-dense diet. This may not be enough for their proper growth and development if you feed them commercial flakes. Here are some foods you can feed your Swordtails:

Vitamin Supplements

 Vitamins are necessary for swordtail fish survival. A supplement like TetraMin Tropical Medley, which aquarists use frequently, is a fantastic approach to providing swordtail fish with vitamins.

Live Foods

 For swordtail fish to grow strong, they need a constant amount of protein in their diet. Therefore, swordtails should regularly eat live foods like daphnia, black or bloodworms, mosquito larvae, and other live larvae for optimal health and growth.

Frozen Food

 Because swordtail fish are difficult to catch and eat live food in a tank environment, frozen foods like brine shrimp or daphnia are ideal. However, you can use frozen fish food instead, if you don't want to risk your fish's health. Most frozen foods are harmful to swordtails' sensitive stomachs. On the other hand, Swordtail fish benefit from freeze-dried worms or shrimp, which provide ample protein.


 Swordtail fish are omnivores that require both plants and animals in their diet. So, for example, if seaweed patties were still available at the pet store, swordtail fish would eat them, but you could try zucchini or cucumbers instead.

Flakes And Granules

 Commercial foods like seaweed flakes, shrimp pellets are preferred by swordtail fish and they eat them quickly. Although swordtails require a variety of foods, crackers, flakes, and pellets can be a staple in their diet. If you can't afford many types of food for your swordtail fish, this is the best option.

What Can You Feed Your Swordtail Fry?

 Live fish do not need special food. Being omnivores and, in addition, voracious eaters, they eat everything that comes into their mouth. So this gives you various food source options to choose from. The different options, however, should be beneficial for the swordtail fish fry. The types of food you can feed your swordtail fish fry are:

Live Foods

 Live foods, such as daphnia (water fleas), brine shrimp or microworms, are one of the best foods for your new fish and are readily available from specialty suppliers. Additionally, it has been found that when baby fish are fed live food, they grow faster. However, you must feed them at least three times a day to consume the micro worms as soon as they emerge from their cocoons, otherwise they will die and pollute the tank.

Brine Shrimp (Baby Brine Shrimp)

 Another great choice is brine shrimp, which you can buy at your local pet store. However, they must be "gut-loaded" before being fed to hatchling fish, as they lack the necessary nutrition for young fry. You must provide a vitamin and mineral supplement in the tank (you can get it from the same store). Artemia is one of the best foods to feed your newborn baby. They are easy to chew, have a soft body, and do not harm their guts when eaten.

Mosquito Larvae

 Mosquito larvae are one of the most nutritious live foods for your swordtail fish fry discovered in standing water. The main problem with this type of food is that you don't want to introduce any diseases or parasites into your aquarium, so be sure to feed your baby fish clean larvae.

 Mosquito larvae can also be used as a live meal, but only if you have a separate tank where the mosquito larvae can be deposited once they hatch. Microworms are another type of live food you should give your newborn baby.


 Microworms are a bit of white worms found in most kitchens and are a good option (you may need to ask the store where you buy your fish food for some). They will happily breed in damp paper towels and make a fantastic source of live food for your hatchling fish.

Eels In Vinegar

 You can also feed your fish vinegar eels, which are tiny worms that thrive in vinegar, for an even more accessible live food supply (apple cider works particularly well). When you feed this food to your fry, make sure the water is clean again, as it can quickly introduce disease.


 You can also feed daphnia to your swordtail fish fry, which are tiny freshwater crustaceans that are about 0.75 cm (0.25 inches) long and live in water. These can be found near slow-moving rivers with lots of vegetation, under rocks, or in foliage in the wild. They are easily found in fishmongers, live or frozen.

Egg Yolk

 Store-bought egg yolk, mashed with a fork, is another fantastic food source for your newborn fish. It would be helpful to keep in mind, however, that this form of meal does not contain as much protein as live foods like daphnia or microworms, so you will need to make sure your fish are getting enough.


 Swordtail fish will consume various leafy greens from plants such as water lettuce and duckweed in the wild, which you can provide to them when feeding live food - make sure it does not there are no chemicals in the tank.


 Infusoria, which are tiny free-swimming organisms in standing water or even the innards of larger creatures like shrimp and snails, are another fantastic food source for your hatchling fish. Place a few leaves in a container of water and let them rot to make a "homemade" infusoria culture.

Commercial Food

 Finally, you can purchase commercial food sources such as infusoria, brine shrimp, or microworms that contain all of the essential nutrients for your newborn fish. These are great because they take the guesswork out of live meals to feed your fish and save you the trouble of establishing an infusoria culture.

 To feed them, you can drop pellets, flakes, or tablets into the water. These are particularly convenient as they require no additional power equipment. It will also prevent your newborn fish from going hungry if their parents eat all live food.

How Can You Make Food For Your Swordtail Fish At Home?

 Making fish food is one way to ensure that you are providing them with the best nutrition possible. There are numerous recipes from which to choose. However, knowing which ones work best can be tricky, especially if you're new to cooking or don't have a lot of cooking experience.

 You should not use artificial preservatives in homemade foods; the best option is to use our all-natural, organic swordtail fish food. Additionally, you can feed your fish blanched cucumber, romaine lettuce, peas, zucchini or boiled spinach. However, it is crucial to note that wild plants should never be used as food as they may contain compounds that are harmful to fish!

 Another benefit of creating your pet food is to leave out any potentially harmful ingredients or preservatives, such as garlic or live plants. The following list of meals and how to cook them at home for swordtails includes:

Brine Shrimp

 One of the most popular and simple homemade dishes is brine shrimp. You will need untreated salt water from your local fish store to make the brine shrimp. After that, fill a large saucepan halfway with seawater and heat it to around 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

 Once you've reached this temperature, add pure brine shrimp eggs (available at your local pet store) and wait for them to hatch (this may take 12-48 hours). At this point, the water should be about 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

 To prevent hatched brine shrimp from sticking together, pour them into a colander and rinse under cold tap water for about 30 seconds. This food can be given live or freeze-dried so you can save it for later use.

Frozen Bloodworms

 Frozen bloodworms, which can also be purchased at your local pet store, are another food that works well as a DIY swordtail fish meal. However, if you feed bloodworms that have been snap frozen, you run the risk of making your fish sick.

 To prepare the bloodworms, place them in a colander and run them under cold tap water for 30 seconds to prevent them from sticking together; then, as with brine shrimp, feed live or freeze-dried worms, save for later use.


 Microworms are another popular type of homemade swordtail fish food. Unfortunately, it's not the easiest thing to produce and takes a lot more effort than just buying brine shrimp eggs from your local pet store.

Egg Yolk

 Egg yolks are another great source of protein for your fish, and they're simple to cut into small pieces and sprinkle over the surface of their water.


 Daphnia is just glorified mosquito larva, but if your swordtail fish hasn't eaten in days, this might help.

Blanched Vegetables

 If you've ever wondered how to feed your swordtail fish vegetables, the answer is simple: cook them! However, rather than serving the vegetables raw, as most people do with their pet fish, blanching will help remove toxins inherent in certain plants, which could harm your fish.

Foods To Avoid Feeding Swordtail Fish

 Swordtail fish can eat a variety of foods, but they cannot eat everything. Because swordtails have delicate stomachs, it is better for them if they eat nothing than eating the wrong kinds of food. It would help if you avoided giving your swordtails to the following:

1. Increase In Protein

 Swordtail fish can eat a small amount of protein. However, they are unable to digest a variety of protein-rich meals, such as shrimp or worms. Therefore, they can get sick and constipated, and eventually lose their appetite.

2. Foods High In Sugar

 Swordtail Fish can consume sweet meals, but it's crucial to track how much they drink - overfeeding and contamination in the tank result from the swordtail fish's preference for sweet foods.

3. Gluten

 Gluten is also dangerous for swordtails. It contains a lot of carbohydrates and fats that your swordtail fish cannot digest. Foods high in gluten like bread can cause stomach problems for your swordtails and also contaminate your aquarium. As a result, you ought to avoid them as much as you can.

4. Caffeine

 Swordtail Fish should not consume caffeine. These fish have sensitive stomachs and will get sick if fed caffeinated foods or drinks.

5. Partially Consumed Foods

 Swordtails can consume partially digested meals. However, keep an eye on how much they eat and remove any uneaten food from the tank after a few hours to prevent them from getting sick.

Consequences Of Overeating

 Inasmuch as you may want to keep swordtails healthy and always satisfied, there is more than harm if the food provided is in excess. Most people believe that overeating causes gastrointestinal problems, but this is not scientifically proven. It is incorrect.

 Overfeeding can only be fatal when the amount of leftover food builds up in the tank, depriving the animals of the space they need to breathe and swim properly. Overfeeding also causes stress, increasing your pets' vulnerability to potential diseases such as fin rot.

 Some of the uneaten food waste decomposes. In doing so, they produce by-products that are harmful to animal health. These products include; ammonia and carbon monoxide (VI), which in most cases alters the ammonia and pH level of the aquarium.

 Recent research shows that overeating, while not related to swallowing issues, can lead to poor health conditions such as the development of fatty liver disease, commonly known as fatty liver disease.

 To avoid overfeeding, regularly provide pets with small but well-balanced foods that they can eat in less than five minutes. The truth is that aquarists are attracted to their ornamental fish. They want to interact with them so frequently. Moreover, they will always feel the need to offer pets a lot of meals than expected. It is advisable to draw up a feeding schedule for swordtails before it is too late.

 Swordtail fish species take an average of sixteen to twenty-four hours to fully digest and ingest consumed food. Therefore, it is prudent to feed them once a day. Even better, you can offer them light foods twice a day.

How Often To Feed Swordtail Fish?

  • Swordtails are omnivores, so provide them with a well-balanced diet that includes both greens and protein.
  • You should give adults small amounts of food two to three times a day at most. This is because swordtails have voracious appetites. Therefore, if you give them a lot of food, they will eat it all at once, which can be dangerous.
  • Feed your Swordtail small amounts of food that will fit in its mouth. Every other day, you can give them commercial fish pellets or herbal flakes, freeze-dried bloodworms and small pieces of blanched zucchini.

How Often Should You Feed Swordtail Fish Fry?

  • You should feed the fry infusoria for two weeks before eating newly hatched brine shrimp or commercial fish pellets.
  • It would help if you gave them small amounts of food twice a day once they reach about an inch in length.
  • Adults do not need additional vegetation in their meals; however, fry benefit from adding seaweed to their diet.
  • It would be helpful to feed small amounts of food to your fry at regular intervals throughout the day.
  • This will ensure they get enough nutrition at all times and prevent them from becoming bloated or constipated, which can be fatal if left untreated.

 Overfeeding your newborn Swordtail Fish will contaminate the water and make it harder for them (and all other residents) to breathe properly.


What Live Food To Feed Swordtail Fish?

 Blackworms, bloodworms, mosquito larvae, and brine shrimp are some of the most common live foods for fish species. When introducing live foods to the aquarium, ensure that they do not float as floating can result in uneaten meals.

Can Swordtail Fish Eat Vegetables?

 Yes. For exquisite health, complement the swordtails with a number of vegetables such as shelled peas, cucumber medallion, broccoli and zucchini. Before incorporating the vegetables into the aquarium, you will need to scald them in boiling water or steam them for a short time and allow them to cool.

 This process inhibits the enzymatic action, thus retaining the flavor, texture and color of the vegetables. You should also blanch ripe vegetables for freezing. In addition to inhibiting enzymatic action, scalding vegetables in boiling water or steam also helps kill surface bacteria and remove dirt. It protects your pets from consuming bitter foods that could otherwise lead to infection.

Is It Possible To Overfeed A Swordtail Fish?

 Yes, it is possible to overfeed fish, especially if you feed them more than once per day or in large amounts at once. If you are currently feeding your Swordtails the recommended amount, you don't have to worry about overfeeding them, as this can be difficult or impossible.

 Use a fish food power pack instead of loose flakes or pellets if you are concerned about overfeeding. These blocks sink almost instantly after being dropped into the tank, which can help minimize excess waste in your water if your fish don't eat all the food you put in.

How Long Can Swordtail Fish Live Without Food?

 A healthy Swordtail Fish can go without food for one to two weeks. However, that doesn't mean you should avoid serving them with meals for that number of days. It just means there's no need to worry about missing or forgetting to feed them for a day or two.

 There are chances that the schedules are sometimes not favorable. Not once will you leave the fish alone to run errands or go away for the weekend. The fish won't die even after two or three days without nourishment. On the other hand, any indication of a specific fish not eating should be an indication of stress or illness.

Bottom line, there's no harm in leaving the fish without food for a few days. However, for ideal health, you should serve your pets their favorite meal daily.

In Conclusion

 Food is the safest way to interact with your pets as an aquarist. Slowly introduce food into the aquarium bit by bit while keeping your eyes on the animals to know if they are interested or not. Thanks to this, you will be able to understand the behavior of your pets and their different desires.

Above all, make sure that all the food served sink. On the other hand, all sunken food should be eaten and not left to decompose. You can introduce bottom-feeding fish species, such as miniature catfish, to the tank to remove leftover food.

Only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, are used by Nodisk One to substantiate the information in our articles.