Can Betta Fish Eat Cooked Shrimp?

Can Betta Fish Eat Cooked Shrimp

While enjoying some delicious fried or cooked shrimps, you might wonder would your betta enjoy some cooked shrimp too? That’s a valid question and many beginners often wonder whether Betta can eat cooked shrimp or not.

Betta fish should never eat cooked shrimp. It will cause indigestion to the Betta which will result in bloating. Even too much raw shrimp can be dangerous too.

Why Betta can’t eat cooked shrimp? What’s the problem? Are there some good alternatives? I’ll answer all these questions in the rest of the article.

Consequence Of Feeding Cooked Shrimp

The digestive system of a betta fish is a bit weird. First of all, it is very small (about the size of Betta’s eye). And secondly, it can’t handle any food that is not natural for a betta.

So, if you overfeed the betta or feed it something that is not natural (Cooked shrimp is not natural in the wild), then the digestive system will start to act crazy.

As a result, indigestion will happen followed by bloating. If bloating happens, you’ll notice swelling in the Betta’s abdomen area. If no steps are taken, the bloating will get more severe and the swelling will enlarge too.

At the last stage, the betta will face difficulties swimming straight or staying upright. It will sway sideways while swimming. And of course, suffer a tragic death.

Trust me, it is not a pleasant thing to see. I have lost one of my Bettas due to bloating (and of course, my ignorance!).

Can Betta Eat Raw Shrimp?

Okay, you might be thinking cooked shrimp is not natural, so it is not good for betta. But how about raw shrimp? Can you feed tiny slivers of raw shrimp to betta?

Well, Yes & No. Occasionally, you might feed little bit of raw shrimp to betta. And your betta may enjoy that too. However, too much raw shrimp can cause indigestion.

That’s why experienced betta keepers don’t actually recommend feeding any raw fish, meat, etc. to betta. There are lots of better alternatives. So, why stick with one that can be potentially harmful?

Some Good Alternatives

In this section, I’ll be talking about some of the alternatives that are much much better than raw shrimps (and of course, cooked shrimp). These are absolutely safe for betta.

I’ll not only list out the alternative protein options for betta, I’ll also mention their nutrition profile so that you can easily understand which one to go for your betta.

First, let’s take a loot at the nutrition profile of raw shrimp so that we can compare it with the other protein options:

This is the nutrition profile of raw shrimp & prawn (per 100 gram serving):

CaloriesProteinFatCarbohydrate
9924 gram0.3 gram0.2 gram

Now, let’s take a loot at the other available options that are safe for betta:

SourceFiberProteinFatMoisturePhosphorus
Daphnia (Hikari Bio-Pure Freeze Dried DaphniaOpens in a new tab.)5%66%9%7%0.1%
Bloodworm (Tetra Freeze Dried BloodwormsOpens in a new tab.)15%50%2%9%0.9%
Brine Shrimp (Omega One Freeze Dried Brine ShrimpOpens in a new tab.)2.5%48%6%5%Not available
Insect Larvae (Fluval Bug BitesOpens in a new tab.)6%32%12%10%0.8%

Staple Food vs Treat

When it comes to feeding betta, you need to be clear about 2 concepts: staple food & treats.

Staple food is the food that your betta will eat every single day. This food will be 90% of the betta’s diet. For this, any good commercial betta food will do.

I like commercial betta foods from reputed brands because the foods are specifically manufactured keeping Bettas in mind. As bettas are carnivorous, they require more protein. Also, vitamin & minerals are very necessary for their proper growth. You can get all that in the right amount in a good commercial food.

Now, I’ll recommend my favorite 2 commercial foods for betta. The first one is Hikari Betta Bio GoldOpens in a new tab.. I am currently feeding this to my betta and trust me, my Betta goes crazy for it. This is certainly one of the best foods out there in the market for Bettas.

My other recommendation will be Aqueon Pro Betta PelletOpens in a new tab.. I don’t have any personal experience with this food. However, Aqueon is a very famous fish food brand and more than 82% consumers have rated this as 5 star. I certainly think this one will also be great for a betta.

You know I like to dive deep when it comes to food. Here is a comparison of the nutrition profile of both of these commercial foods:

Food NameFiberProteinFat MositurePhosphorus
Hikari Betta Bio Gold3%38%4%10%0.7%
Aqueon Pro Betta Pellet3%37%8%8%1%

Treats should be occasional. That’s why they are called treats. I treat my betta with bloodworm, daphnia or brine shrimp only once a week. You can also try some peas or other vegetables. Remember these shouldn’t be fed everyday.

Final Words

I hope by now, you are aware of why you shouldn’t feed cooked shrimp to betta, and what are some of the good alternatives. I have also mentioned staples vs treat food and why you need to focus on a good commercial food for betta.

Hope you found this discussion helpful.

Muntaseer Rahman

I have been keeping shrimps as a pet for many years now. I’ve fallen in love with these cute pets from the moment I saw them. That’s why I am writing articles to share my shrimp keeping knowledge with you.

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