What Do Cory Catfish Eat?

Just like goldfish, Cory catfish comes under the category of bottom feeders.

They typically eat from the lower to the middle section of the water, whether it’s in the wild or in a fish tank.

All general Cory catfish species feed on the regular fish diet, but some particular species also prefer vegetable matter.

Therefore, their diet really depends on what kind of species they belong to.

If you are new to fishkeeping or have just bought yourself a pair of Cory catfish, this article will help you understand the kind of diet regimen you can create for your pet fish.

Let’s get into it!

What Do Cory Catfish Eat?

The first thing to consider here is that Cory catfish are omnivores. This means that you cannot go wrong with most types of fish feeds and plants.

Whether it’s pellets, worms, or brine shrimp, you can keep your Cory catfish healthy and happy at the same time.

However, you must not forget that a fish’s digestive system is very delicate, which is why foods high in vitamins and other nutrition are incredibly vital for them.

A mix-and-match of plants, vegetable matter, and protein is a good way to go.

Let’s discuss protein options first.

Cory Catfish Diet: Protein

Here we will shed light on several protein options that you can easily incorporate into your Cory catfish diet:

Fish Flakes

Cory Catfish enjoy mixed fish flakes (different brands sell different kinds of flakes) mostly because they enjoy scavenging for them in the bottom of the tank.

This is an easy-to-use item to add to your pet fish’s diet because it doesn’t require any prep.

However, fish flakes might offer some form of protein, but they do not offer enough.

Hence, this should be used as a supplement instead of a primary diet.

Most people use fish flakes only to keep their pets busy foraging for them throughout the day.

Shrimp Pellets

High-quality shrimp pellets are a great choice if you want to provide your Cory catfish with a well-balanced diet that has a good amount of protein.

Besides the usual veggies, algae, and plant options, these shrimp pellets are actually made from shrimp.

This is something that Cory catfish loves with the added benefit of how the pellets sink down to the bottom of the tank.

Therefore, they become both food and a play-time activity for the Cory catfish.

Some reports and articles out there highlight how shrimp pellets might not be a great idea simply because they fall under the category of dry food. However, this isn’t true.

Good quality shrimp pellets are high in natural fats which keeps your Cory catfish thriving gracefully.

Other than this, if you read the label closely and get the ones with the lowest amount of ash, you won’t even have to worry about fogging up the tank as you feed your fish.

Frozen or Live Bloodworms & Earthworms

Different types of worms (frozen or live) are a great way to provide the Cory catfish with the nutrition they need to be healthy.

Most fish keepers like to provide their fish with a protein-rich diet when they are about to enter their mating phase.

However, an important thing to remember here is that live foods can transmit parasites if they are not sourced from a reputable source.

So, always ensure that you are purchasing your Cory catfish food from a well-known seller.

Freeze-dried Insects

There is no doubt in the fact that your Cory catfish needs a well-balanced diet.

That means that offering them meaty freeze-dried insects is a great way to increase their protein intake.

However, freeze-dried insects or other live food should be given sparingly.

Anything in excess can be dangerous when it comes to fragile creatures such as aquarium fish species.

Tubifex Worms

Tubifex worms are a classic favorite. Not only are they a delicious treat for the

Cory catfish, but it also gives them hours of entertainment when they search for them on the tank floor.

Let’s move to the vegetable options:

Cory Catfish Diet: Plants & Vegetables

In this section we will talk about the plants and vegetables you can use to round up your Cory catfish’s diet so that it receives all the necessary nutrients that greens have to offer:

Algae Wafers

Omnivorous fish like Cory catfish enjoy algae wafers just like they enjoy other meaty food items.

One reason why algae wafers are a popular choice among Cory catfish is that they sink down to the bottom of the tank.

Being bottom feeders by nature, the Cory catfish then scavenge for the wafers and enjoy them while they last.

An added bonus with algae wafers is that other non-bottom feeder fish do not like to eat them. So, more for them!

Cucumber , Zucchini, Lettuce, & Squash

Cory catfish are omnivores, which is why you can always supplement their diet with vegetables such as cucumbers.

Even though they will not be super excited about this option, they will eat it nonetheless.

What Not to Feed You Cory Catfish

Things you shouldn’t be doing or feeding when it comes to your Cory catfish:

Excessive Algae

Feeding your Cory catfish algae all the time is not a good idea because even though it may fill up their stomach, it will not provide them with the proper nutrients they need to be optimally healthy.

Most Cory catfish might get full-on algae and not have enough room for other foods that would provide them with the nutrition they need.

Strictly Dry Pellets

As we have highlighted before, the digestive system of a fish is very fragile.

Therefore, excess dry food, such as pellets can be harmful to them.

You must ensure that your Cory Catfish’s diet should be well balanced in order to maintain its health.

Big Food

A Cory catfish can eat almost anything as long as it fits in its mouth.

That being said, you must ensure that the food you provide your fish should be small enough.

If you are feeding your fish vegetables, then make sure to cut or tear it up to smaller pieces.

Also read: Can Cory Catfish Eat Betta Food?

Some FAQs about Feeding Cory Catfish

This section answers a few frequently asked questions that most people have about feeding Cory catfish or a Cory catfish diet:

What If You’re On Vacation?

If you and your family are heading on a vacation and you have no one to take care of your Cory catfish, you can always purchase bottom feeder tablets.

Bottom feeder tablets are slow dissolving tablets that you just have to pop in the water.

They slowly dissolve and release small quantities of food into the aquarium making it easy for the Cory catfish to scavenge around just how they like it. 

How Long Can A Cory Catfish Go Without Food?

Cory catfish can live without food for up to seven days. After a week of not eating anything, their bodies will start to use their reserves in order to satiate their hunger.

Therefore, after the seventh day, the Cory catfish will go into starvation mode.

If you plan to be away from your Cory catfish for more than six days, it is highly advisable to buy some bottom-feeder tablets so that your fish doesn’t have to suffer.

As a pet owner or a breeder, you should never let your Cory catfish go hungry for more than four days.

A day or two away from them will not have an adverse effect on their health.

How Much Should You Feed Your Cory Catfish?

Even though there isn’t a set quantity that you can stick to when it comes to feeding Cory catfish, a general guide is to only give them enough that they can consume.

If there is food wastage in the tank then you know that you’re overfeeding them.

Too many leftovers will make the tank dirty and increase the amount of time you have to spend cleaning it.

So, you can feed them once or twice a day, depending upon the amount, just make sure they consume everything quickly so that they are not being overfed.

The Bottom Line

Cory catfish aren’t difficult to keep even if you are a novice fish keeper.

Following just a few simple steps to ensure your fish’s health and nutrition will keep your pet healthy and happy for a long time.

The trick is to try and provide your pet Cory catfish with a well-balanced diet.

A good mixture of live foods, freeze-dried foods, and vegetables will provide it with all the necessary nutrients it needs in order to thrive.

As a pet owner, you should understand your responsibility towards your Cory catfish and always keep an eye out for its health and proper growth.

Always monitor your fish if you’re switching up its diet and never skip mealtime!

We hope the information provided here will be helpful for you and your Cory catfish! Cheers!

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