Culturing your own live food

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  • Post category:Betta care

Live food is a very important factor for conditioning your fish to spawn, as well as raising your fry.                                       But sometimes it can be an obstacle to find live foods, it can be pricey, or the quality can be very dissappointing.                 But it isn’t that hard to breed or culture live foods as many think.                                                                                                     Here are summed up 4 live foods you can breed very easly.


1. Daphnia

Daphnia breeding maybe takes a little more space, but it’s definitely worth it, as they make a
great food for as wel fry as adults.
There are a few different ways to culture daphnia, I will list two of them.

- Method 1

The main food source of daphnia is algea, so the fastest way to culture daphnia is
with green water. Green water is water that’s coloured green by the algae where the Daphnia feed from.
First set up a tub or bucket of water on a place where there is as much sun as possible.
After the first week there should be already some algae growth, normally after two-three
weeks the water should be ready to use. After a while the water will be back clear because the Daphnia ate all the green algea, you will then have to add new green water.
This method is a little more time consuming, because you always need to have new
green water, but it is the fastest.
Preferbly add an air pump for oxygen, add your daphnia and your off!

- Method 2

Place the tub outside, you don’t need to place it in the sun. The benefit of this
method is that you don’t need to place it into the sun to be succesfull. I puttet the tub
behind some plants, out of sight (it’s not that beautiful to have a tub in the middle of your
Then you have to add some organic material like leaves, I have great results with hay (dried grass),
the stuff you feed to rabbits etc.
Then you’ll need to wait, for a week or two, so the bacterial growth starts.
Then add daphnia ent portion and wait!
This method is less effort, but its also slower. It’s good if you only need food for a couple of fish.

2. Mosquito larvae
muggenzifter larfffff

This method is probly the easiest of all of them, it’s comparable to breeding daphnia. You
place a tub outside, add organic material as food for the lavae and you wait. After a week
you will see mosquito larvae swimming in your tub.
The disadvantage of breeding mosquito larvae is that it only works in the (lente) summer, because
the mosquitos only breed then.
If you have a rain tub there’s a big chance you’ll find them in there.

3. Grindal worms

Grindal worms are a less known live food, but are a great variation to the more common known life foods such as mosquito larvae and daphnia. The culture is very simple to set up, and you don’t need a lot of room. You’ll first need a small container,       like from the Chinese restaurant or something like that. Make some holes in the lid,                                                                               and fill it for 2/3 with some kind of soil.
You can use for example coco peat or compost, it doesn’t make that much of a difference.
Then add your ent portion.
Oubviously you will need to feed them, I use cat pellets, but fish pellets will do the job too.
It’s important to spray a little bit of water on the food, to moisten it a little bit.
For harvesting you just scoop some, put them in a cup with some water and you can just suck
them up with a pipet and you have happy fish!
Please keep in mind you shouldn’t feed them too often, because they are really fat they
don’t make a good food to feed every day.


4. Blackworms

Blackworms are my favourite live food for bettas. They are very high in protein and nutrients
and stay alive for very long in your tank, they don’t die till your fish eats them and make your
tank a mess.
A big misconception about blackworms is that they are the same as tubifex.
But that’s absolutely not true, in contrast to tubifex, blackworms don’t contain diseases and
don’t live in nasty roils etc.
First you’ll need an old aquarium, or a plastic tub. The bigger the better.
Fill it with a layer of gravel, and add an airpump with an airstone.
Add your ent portion, you can feed them boiled patato, fish pellets, they besicly eat almost
everything. With blackworms it is important to do regular water changes, preferbely once a
For harvesting you can scoop up some gravel with worms and let it hang in a cup or so. After
a couple of minutes, the blackworms will be crowled outside the net at the bottom of your