I must have the world's pickiest betta! I've tried two kinds of pellets made for bettas, freeze dried bloodworms, frozen mysis shrimp, frozen reef caviar, and Ocean Nutrition instant baby brine shrimp (comes in a jar that looks like baby food, only smaller). He swims after the food as soon as I put it in like he's all excited and hungry. But then he will reluctantly take a bite, and promptly spit it back out! He will eventually eat pellets, but only after he's spit it out a few times. He apparently hates the instant baby brine shrimp. Just looks at it, doesn't seem to recognize its food at all. Anyone else tried it? He will also pick at algae wafers that I put in for the bottom feeders. But I don't think he's actually eating any of it. Is a picky betta common, and what did you guys do to acclimate them to new foods?
How long have you had him for? If he is new (like a week or less) he may still be adapting to the new environment and not eating because of that, it's common with new guys.
If you have had him for awhile and he is not eating I would suggest monitoring him (and his poops) closely just incase he is sick, if he has just suddenly started to refuse food after being a regular eater that would be a sign something is maybe up.. but if he isn't showing any signs of being "off" I wouldn't worry too much, just offer him small amounts as you've been doing and if he doesn't eat remove the food from the water so it doesn't mug it up and keep trying.
I have also heard of other people on here suggesting soaking the pellets in a bit of garlic juice for the more picky eaters.. so you could try that.
I've had one picky eater who I had to wait on for 2 weeks before he would eat. :/ if he is new, it's a waiting game lol! if you have minced garlic, take some of the juice and soak a pellet. try live foods too maybe. Most bettas find it hard to refuse garlic or live prey.
No, I've used the Hikari betta pellets, and another type. (I put it into a container and didn't save the package, but I don't believe it was Omega One). I will get some of that next time I hit the LFS. I've had him since Feb. 9th, so its been 2.5 weeks. He's very active, curious, friendly, and doesn't act the least bit slow or sick. I will try soaking his pellets in garlic juice. Thanks for the tip! Its not easy removing the uneaten food, as you know, but luckily the cories, snails and shrimp are right there to pick up anything that is dropped! Thank you so much.
I've also tricked my bettas... I would make them chase a small baster (I got one for the fish, that is miniscule) and being curious most would follow...then I'd squeeze out the pellet and they'd chase it when it fell and end up eating it, or at least playing with it and eating half xD
Mine used to be picky, spit out all pellets (though he always ate the non-nourishing brine and blood worms)- With the pellets it was a size thing- even the smallest ones were too big, so now I split them in 2-3 peices with my fingernail and he gobbles them up no problem.
The garlic soaking worked for me too, but I think it just softened them enough to bite in half in my case.
He's finally eating almost anything I put in there. I guess he finally realized its food. I trained him without even trying to by swishing a finger in the water, and he would come over, curious to see what I was doing, and then I'd release a tiny pinch of either pellets or frozen food. He got used to this routine, and now he knows it means mealtime when I wave my finger back and forth in the water. I guess we all have our ways! Whatever works! Thanks for the suggestions.