A few months ago, we caught 4 minnows out of a pond and brought them home. We couldn't really fin anything on Google about how to care for them, so I just had to figure out what they would eat. Now I decided to make a post about how to care for them so all 5 of you out there who read my blog will know how to care for minnows. Because I'm sure that all of you have minnows. I'm not talking about Rosy-Reds, either. I mean the real thing that lives in ponds and gets used for fish bait.
First, you need to know that no matter how big your minnows are, or how small your crayfish is, DO NOT, under any circumstances, keep them together. The crayfish just might decide to kill and eat the largest minnow, and when you move the crayfish to a different tank, he might go and die on you.
Have you ever noticed that when you take a couple of dozen minnows in a bucket to use for fish bait, they all die after a few hours? That's because they don't have enough oxygen, so you need to have an air pump in a tank for minnows.
You don't have to have a big tank, but they will be a lot happier and healthier in one. At first, we have 4 minnows, 1 crayfish, 2 tadpoles, and an unknown number of water snails in a plastic box about the size of a shoebox. Then we moved them to a 1 gallon tank with a lid when they tried to jump out of the box. Now I upgraded to a 10 gallon tank, which, if you buy one without all of the fancy gadgets such as heaters, filters, etc., only costs about $10. We have 3 minnows, 1 guppy, 1 algae-eating fish, and 2 snails (which, for some wonderful reason, don't seem to be reproducing) in it.
At first, I had to try different foods to see what they would eat. I found out that they eat floating foods, but the only food we had at the time was betta food, so I would either crush it or soak it in water for a while before I gave it to them so that they could eat it. Now, I use tropical fish flakes and freeze-dried tubifex worms mixed together. What I do is get a small container, such as a spice container, that's been thoroughly cleaned, and then I coarsely crush the flakes into the container until it's about two thirds full. Then I take some tubifex worms cubes and crumble them into the flakes until the container is almost full. Now shake it up to mix the food. (I crush the food because even though the minnows could probably handle the big flakes, the guppy couldn't.)
We don't heat the water, and they are fine. They also don't seem to be having any babies, which is good for me, because we'd have to find something to do with them.
That's how I take care of our minnows.