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Question: Guppies: Breeding + Food for Axolotls

Kerry1968

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The guppies are good for a treat for axolotls but not as a staple diet. They also provide good exercise! Though I had a female guppy that survived in my tank with two axolots for around 6 months or more! I was quite upset when I discovered her gone this week!
The best all-in-one food for axies is earthworms, all the nutrients they need.
 

missvelika

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I will give you my experience on Guppies.... All they do is breed!

I have about 40 fry in my tank atm easily, and have recently had to get rid of some of the older guys to make room for them. My Red bellies do eat the fry, but there not eating enough to even start cutting in to the number which survive.

If you want to breed Guppies for food then its really easy to do, you need at least one Female in the tank per Male (I would recommend maybe 2 boys 3 girls to start with), other wise they get stressed and don't last long.
The Guppies are live bearers and have a brood (i don't know if this is the correct term) about once a month on average (there also able to store the males sperm for about 3 months) which can be between 15 – 40 fry at a time, ive found the size increases with the fishes age.

You can move a pregnant female over in to a floating tank so the fry wont get eaten, but mine are producing fry in such amounts that I’ve never had to do this, as as long as there fed often with small amounts it stops them from having that fry snack ;)

Give the little ones cover, I’ve got loose weeds, and also they have the shelter of my newts floating platform to hind under, and they tend to keep out the other Guppies way… give them a few weeks and they quickly mature to a good feeding size for an Axe

As for feeding the little ones, cooked egg yoke does the job, lots of protein for them to grow strong… I have to admit the newts do tend to try and eat this too, I’ve not seen it on a recommended eating list, but they seem to love it….

I know quite a bit from keeping Guppies so feel free to ask me if you have any Q I’ll try my best to answer. I know there not number 1 for fish owners either, being put down as boring, but I think there great :D
 

doktordoris

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Earlier I took 7 guppy fry from my hatchlings tank and popped them in with my axie.

They are all still okay, apart from one that was 'half eaten', Id better explain, my axie sucked it up but 20 seconds or so later the guppy was spat out, and he then swam off apparantly none the worse for his eating experience?
 

Dalabrae

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We've had our two little monsters about a week now, and have been trying a few different food sources out on them. Initially I bought a container (punnet?) of earthworms, and a tray each of frozen brine shrimp and frozen blood worm.

The first day feeding we tried the earthworms, and after a little coaxing both of our Axies realised that a hand nearby is worth investigating! After a couple days of worms, my wife had no success with the brine shrimp and the blood worm so I gave them a go. We found that both were too small for the axies to see (our guess, most of the brine shrimp is under 2mm, and the blood worm is up to about 4mm long) so I formulated a plan! :rolleyes:

Using the little blister package cell that the brine shrimp comes in I only opened it a tiny bit, and holding it infront of one of the monsters so that they knew it was food time, I wait until they start to open their mouth then I squeeze the package a little so that it squirts some of the shrimp in. These guys learn pretty fast (except when swimming into glass is concerned), and they started to only open their mouths a little bit, instead of the bit chomp they do for worms.

For the blood worms I do almost the same, but as it wasn't in individual blisters I make my own package using cling wrap (or a small plastic bag would work too) and folding a corner then pricking it so there is a hole for the blood worm to be sqeezed out, kind of like a cake decorator! :D
Squeeze out enough of the blood worm so the axie can grab a hold, but not bite the bag, when they have a hold then squeeze more, they will even have a bit of a tug'o'war with you.

After reading about raising guppies on here I thought I would investigate that option too, we have a smaller tank (freebie from a family member) that we set up to grow some plants in, which would work well. So after talking to one of the guys at our favourite pet shop (Best Friends - Geelong *plug*) I decided to get a couple of juvenile mollies (about the same size as adult guppies) to see if our axies would go hunting. Well this afternoons investigation revealed one of the mollies missing, so my wife decided that it was out female axie that had not eaten... well after a little chasing around the tank and a comment of "gee this fish is slippery" the female axies expression turned from "isn't it food time yet" to "Hey look, food!"... you can guess the rest.

So soon it is off to Best Friends to get the substrate and guppies for the breeder tank!

errr, sorry about the long, hijacking post, :dizzy:
 

sharelkaye

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Well what my axies love is frozen blood worms and brine shrimp as treats and guppies as well, but as their main source of food I feed them pellets for newt and salamander that I buy at Petco and some other stores depends on the price, but I drop some pellets in there and they go right after them no wiggling in front of their faces or anything, really easy!!
 

geodaryl

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Just thought I'd share my experience with guppy feeders....
I found that they can survive for months at a time in the tank with a few big axies. But, all of a sudden a feeding frenzy must take hold and they tend to all go fairly quickly. With maybe one last guppy hanging on in there for another few months until the inevitable CHOMP !
As for breeding if you select the fish well at the shop you can get a "pre-hit" female and you will get the youngsters even sooner. I've even had them give birth in the bag on the way home !
I found that in my cooler axie tank they only bred a few fry at a time whereas in a tropical setup 20+ is more likely.
so I would say from my experience that a seperate tank will be easier to breed them.
Another thing I noticed is that my axies never bothered to chase them down, they just wait until a wandering fish comes a bit too close and is sucked into the axies mouth.
 

SludgeMunkey

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One note on breeding guppies as food items. Make sure you have a proper ratio of males to females!
(This came up recently in Caudata.org Chat)

I suggest a minimum stocking density of two females to a male. Cultures where females outnumber males tend appear to top produce less males over time. This can result in a short longevity of your colony.
 

kenya

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We've had our two little monsters about a week now, and have been trying a few different food sources out on them. Initially I bought a container (punnet?) of earthworms, and a tray each of frozen brine shrimp and frozen blood worm.

The first day feeding we tried the earthworms, and after a little coaxing both of our Axies realised that a hand nearby is worth investigating! After a couple days of worms, my wife had no success with the brine shrimp and the blood worm so I gave them a go. We found that both were too small for the axies to see (our guess, most of the brine shrimp is under 2mm, and the blood worm is up to about 4mm long) so I formulated a plan! :rolleyes:

Using the little blister package cell that the brine shrimp comes in I only opened it a tiny bit, and holding it infront of one of the monsters so that they knew it was food time, I wait until they start to open their mouth then I squeeze the package a little so that it squirts some of the shrimp in. These guys learn pretty fast (except when swimming into glass is concerned), and they started to only open their mouths a little bit, instead of the bit chomp they do for worms.

For the blood worms I do almost the same, but as it wasn't in individual blisters I make my own package using cling wrap (or a small plastic bag would work too) and folding a corner then pricking it so there is a hole for the blood worm to be sqeezed out, kind of like a cake decorator! :D
Squeeze out enough of the blood worm so the axie can grab a hold, but not bite the bag, when they have a hold then squeeze more, they will even have a bit of a tug'o'war with you.

After reading about raising guppies on here I thought I would investigate that option too, we have a smaller tank (freebie from a family member) that we set up to grow some plants in, which would work well. So after talking to one of the guys at our favourite pet shop (Best Friends - Geelong *plug*) I decided to get a couple of juvenile mollies (about the same size as adult guppies) to see if our axies would go hunting. Well this afternoons investigation revealed one of the mollies missing, so my wife decided that it was out female axie that had not eaten... well after a little chasing around the tank and a comment of "gee this fish is slippery" the female axies expression turned from "isn't it food time yet" to "Hey look, food!"... you can guess the rest.

So soon it is off to Best Friends to get the substrate and guppies for the breeder tank!

errr, sorry about the long, hijacking post, :dizzy:

Turkey baster has worked wonders for me with all of their smaller foods ;]
 

redscarletj

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Wow. That's a lot of information to think about. I thought Guppies were tropical fish - well here in Australia, I have only ever seen them in a warm water tank.
How do I get them in cold water?
I'm sure they wouldn't survive very long in cold - or is it a certain type of guppy?
Plus, I have never seen a mosquito fish either. Do we have them here - or is it only overseas?
I think I want to try breeding live food though, as it sounds like fun, and I'm sure it would be an interesting full time job keeping my 3 year old away from the tank. I have lids on my goldfish and tropical tanks, but somehow he still seems to find ways of putting interesting objects in there.
 
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darren79

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We have a supply of Gambusia (mosquito fish) in a small backyard pond - they are available 'free of charge' from most rivers and stormwater drains in Western Australia (introduced pest) - catch about 20 and they will just keep breeding.
Once or twice a month as a treat for our 2 axys we catch about 2-3 fish and put them in the tank. The gambusia are usually gone after a few days. If the axys aren't having much success catching the fish, we have found that a small amount of fish flakes on the surface will keep the gambusia 'distracted', and the fish food 'smell' (I think) attracts the axolotls towards the fish. Once we found a gambusia on the bench, behind the tank, dried out ... obviously jumped out of the tank while being pursued by an axy! Weird thing is one clever gambusia has survived in the tank for over 8 months as the axys can't catch him:cool:.

We also buy the axolotls a goldfish each as christmas presents, and once when we went on holidays the pet shop sold us a school of rosy barbs (about 10) cheap - I'm well aware of the potential dangers with some fish, I had an axy get a corydora catfish stuck in his mouth, due to the bony plate scales.
 

222693

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Gambusia= MINNOWS! awesome! say bye bye to paying for feeder fish. They're everywhere. Thanks for that I would never have thought of catching a few minnows for them.
 

zanesmumma

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i have a friend who had guppies in with her 2 axolotls and she said the guppies eventually killed her axies from nibbling at their gills. has anyone else heard of this? she said it was a vet that told her that's how they dies and he said not to put guppies with axies ever. :confused:
 

Catbeanie

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Gambusia= MINNOWS! awesome! say bye bye to paying for feeder fish. They're everywhere. Thanks for that I would never have thought of catching a few minnows for them.

I am in Victoria (Australia) and fish out the mosquito fish from the pond... they are usually great with the axies and get gulped up pretty quick. We collect about 20 at a time (and tadpoles too at this time of year)

The only problem I have had with them is if you put too many fish in the tank they nip at the axies gills. My gold axie with pink gills almost lost all her gills because of this, they grew back but not nice ... i guess they looked like worms to eat to a fish. They didn't touch the black axie at all.

Oh yeah.... they are also fun as they like the same food as the axie. This morning I dangled a worm in front of axie and the mosquito fish got the worm first, then the axie got both of them together... most excited we were... :eek: :D
 

dodgy

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i dont know about axies but its a definate no no for goldfish to be fed to piranha's, the goldfish contain a growth inhibiting hormone which can stunt the fishes growth quite dramaticaly.
not just goldfish either any of the carp family.
also feeding live fish is now illegal in the uk :(
 

lexmiller

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My first Axolotl "Bubba" loved guppies. I take more a natural approach to my tanks. If the guppies are born and they survive, then more eats for good ol' Bubba. If not, the guppies will breed again and surely produce more food. It's a natural cycle. But that was just ONE Axolotl...he eventually became full and was also eating blood worms.

Sadly Bubba got caught in a very small pot(how the heck he got in there I'll never know) and drowned overnight. I miss this species and have not been able to find them in my area.
 

Punkamph

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Guppies will eat their own fri, and your axie will eat anything that will fit in his/her mouth and if there is a school then axies tend to gorge if they can. I don't suggest live fish as food, the nutrition value is nowhere near comparable to worms, plus their bones can be hard to digest. It's just more work for you.
 

CrimsonBlaze

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Guppies are easier to breed without a breeder box i think
just use lots of artificial plants, i even have an artificial plant breeder mat in my tank that the fry hide in and in my experience the parent wont eat them if theyve got plenty of fish granules to feed on constantly(they are quite lazy fish and will eat whatevers easiest usually) I am currently breeding guppies / mountain minnows and also mollies, (when i find me a male for myn to mate with) all in the same tank.
i currently have 4 preg female guppies in there , 2 male guppies, 1 of each sex of minnows, 1 female molly and a sucker fish in my breeding tank
the problem with guppies and minnows is thier size(you need several in each meal to feed an adult axie) witch is why its best to breed mollies aswell as only 1 is needed for each meal.
guppies and minnows are perfect for smaller axies though say under 14 cm ish.
and if youd rather cold water fish to breed for food(cheaper not having to buy a heater unless ofcourse you allredy have one) cocabillies are also extreemely easy to breed and get a bit bigger than the guppies and minnows, i know many people that breed theese for baby snake neck turtles and they love-em
 

Aaron71w

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could my guppies be already pregnant when i just bought them from the pet store the two females i bought have a darkened gravid spot on the back and how can you tell when your guppy is ready to five birth to fry.
 

Shizeric

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Yes, guppies can and very often are pregnant when you buy them at a pet store (as long as they were kept with males). You can tell your guppy is about to give birth when they are very large and appear "boxy" from the front.
 

Aaron71w

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they were separated at the pet store but the two i bought have dark gravid spots and one of them is sort of boxy looking, could she still be pregnant
 
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