Platies can eat betta food, but they need more variety in their diet. Platies are omnivores so they can need more fiber than is offered in betta food. If you feed your platy betta food, supplement its diet with vegetables and other high-fiber ingredients like spirulina.
To learn more about feeding your platy’s betta food, keep reading. This article fully explains the platy’s diet requirements, what happens if you feed the platy betta food, and more.
What Do Platies Eat?
In order to fully understand the nuances of feeding betta fish food to your platy, you have to know what platies eat in the wild.
In the wild, platy fish are scavengers that will eat just about anything they can fit into their mouths. This means that the fish are omnivores. Omnivores eat both animal matter and plant matter. Algae, underwater plants, and insects are some of the most popular foods for wild platy fish.
Pet platies should have a similar diet to their wild cousins. The healthiest of platy fish will eat a variety of the following:
- Nutritious fish food
- Brine shrimp
- Blood worms
- Tubifex worms
- Blanched/boiled vegetables (broccoli, cucumber, squash, and zucchini)
Shoot to provide your platy fish with a diet consisting of 30% to 50% protein and 8% to 10% fiber. The rest of its diet will be made up of fat and vitamins. Feeding a wide variety of food to your platy will ensure that it gets enough fiber, nutrients, and protein in its diet.
Platy vs Betta Diet
In comparison, betta fish are a type of insectivore. Insectivores exclusively eat insects. Mosquitoes, blood worms, flies, and larvae are the most popular treats for betta fish. Interestingly, Betta fish eat shrimp too, but shrimp are technically classified as insects for the sea, further making the betta an insectivore.
Because bettas eat an exclusive diet of insects, they don’t need that much fiber. Instead, they have a high protein diet. Most betta fish food includes various types of larvae, worms, flies, and shrimp to ensure pet bettas get the nutrition they need. The betta fish diet should include 50% to 70% protein and 5% fiber.
Because betta fish food does not include plant matter, it does not have a high fiber count. This difference in plant matter and fiber means that platy fish food is not identical to betta fish food. Betta fish food normally only has a fiber content of 5% but a protein content of 70%, but platy food has a fiber content of 10% and protein content of 50%.
Is It Safe to Feed Platies Betta Fish Food?
Now that we’ve learned the differences between a platy and a betta diet, we can better understand whether or not platies can eat betta fish food.
On the one hand, a platy fish will not be harmed by eating betta fish food. For example, if you have a betta fish in the tank with a platy fish, your platy fish will not be harmed in any way by consuming the betta fish food. In fact, the platy will likely love the food since it includes nutritious protein.
On the other hand, a platy cannot live exclusively on betta fish food. If you were to feed a platy fish betta food exclusively, it would not get enough fiber or other nutrients it needs to survive. Exclusively feeding betta fish food to a platy would result in it dying of malnutrition.
So, platy fish can eat betta fish food, but they need a bit more in their diets as well. You will have to supplement other food types into the platy’s diet to ensure this omnivore gets enough fiber and nutrition that is not provided in the betta food.
How to Feed Betta Food to Platies?
Because betta food is not harmful to platies, you can feed the food to the fish, but you have to know how to do so correctly.
Let’s say that you run out of platy fish food and don’t have time to run to the pet store. Luckily, you have some betta fish food in the closet.
In that case, don’t think twice about feeding betta fish food to your platy. The food will not harm the fish, and going a day without additional fiber will not harm the fish at all. Just make sure to incorporate more fiber and nutrients into the platy’s diet the following day.
If you have both betta fish and platy fish, you can use betta fish flakes for both. However, you want to add more food for the platy fish as well. Also add spirulina, blanched vegetables, and boiled vegetables to the tank. The betta fish will likely not touch these foods, but the platies will. Cucumber, broccoli, zucchini, and squash are the best vegetables to select.
If your betta goes after the vegetables, they won’t hurt the fish. So, don’t hesitate to feed your platy extra vegetables, even if there are bettas in the tank too.
Incorporating both betta fish food and additional vegetables into your platy’s diet will ensure that it has all the most necessary nutrients to survive. If you want to go the extra step, you can feed live or frozen insects to your betta fish and platies as well. They will appreciate the snack!
In conclusion, platy fish can eat betta fish food, but other ingredients need to be supplemented into the fish’s diet. Spirulina and blanched or boiled vegetables need to be added in addition to the betta fish food to ensure your platy gets enough fiber and not too much protein.
If you’re worried that your platy fish is not getting enough fiber, stick to a traditional platy diet. If you replicate as closely as possible what the platy will eat in the wild, the fish will more than likely be happy and healthy. Incorporate high-quality platy flake food, live food, and frozen foods into its diet for maximum health and required nutrients.