What to Feed Freshwater Crayfish: A Guide to Safely Feeding Crayfish

In the wild, freshwater crayfish eat crustaceans, worms, and other small aquatic animals. However, freshwater crayfish are typically fed various fish food pellets, live insects, and even fresh vegetables in the aquarium setting. 

Freshwater crayfish need to eat small food pellets high in protein, fat, and fiber. You can give your crayfish pellets from fresh vegetables, fruits, meat, or even human food. 

Freshwater crayfish eat whole food pellets, or the crayfish may eat the food pellets while swimming in the water. 

What Freshwater Crayfish Eat in the Aquarium

Freshwater crayfish are hardy creatures that can handle a variety of food types. They can eat just about anything. Freshwater crayfish like to eat live or frozen foods such as small worms, shrimp, and larvae.

However, ensure the food is safe and nutritious and is large enough for the crayfish to carry away without getting stuck in their mouthparts. Keep an eye on water quality and adjust food amounts as needed – crayfish consume much of it! 


Freshwater crayfish like to eat plants, algae, and leaves. Choose high-quality plants that are nutritious for freshwater crayfish to eat. Remember to water the plants regularly! In addition, make sure that you provide plenty of hiding places for them so they can rest and digest their food correctly.

Manufactured Foods

Manufactured foods are a great way to provide your crayfish with the nutrition they need without worrying about their food supply. They come in different flavors and can be offered at all times so that the crayfish always have something to eat. 

Don’t hesitate to contact a pet store or aquarium supplier if you have any questions or concerns regarding manufactured diets for freshwater crayfish. Crayfish are natural omnivores, so they occasionally eat even small insects!

Live Foods

Live foods are an essential part of the diet of your pet crayfish. Not only do they provide them with the nutrients they need to stay healthy and active, but also feeders fish, shrimp, and worms can help keep them lively and entertained. 

Make sure you give small shrimp (between 2-3 inches), feeder fish that eat live food pellets or flakes (a few times a week), and worms once every two weeks. And lastly, ensure that your crayfish don’t become too overweight by feeding it regular servings of fresh food!


Vegetables can make an excellent addition to a crayfish’s diet. You can feed them various vegetables, but avoid those with high salt levels. Crayfish are grazing animals and will eat any vegetable that is fit for human consumption. You can also give them small pieces of meat or fish to help supplement their diet.

Calcium Supplement

Freshwater crayfish require a calcium supplement to thrive. Without it, they may develop skeletal deformities and die. The best way to provide this essential nutrient is through a tablet or pellet. You can add this food to your aquatic ecosystem and watch as your crayfish thrives.

Other Suggested Foods

Here are other suggested foods you can give your crayfish to help them get the nutrients they need: grape, apple, blackberry pieces, and vegetable trimmings or pellets. 

These foods can also be supplemented with water conditioners or enrichment tablets to provide extra vitamins and minerals. Ensure the food is fresh before feeding it to your crayfish; if it still needs to be eaten in 24 hours, it will need to be moved to a new location. In addition to live and artificial foods, freshwater crayfish enjoy a variety of algae pellets. 

How Often and How Much Crayfish Should Be Fed

Food Variations

Make sure you feed your crayfish a variety of food so they can stay energized. You can also give them live food like crickets and worms, which they will love! Freshwater crayfish are animals that require a lot of food to survive but ensure not to overfeed them as this could cause health problems.

Optimal Feeding Time

You should feed your crayfish every two to three days and mix the food thoroughly so that it is evenly distributed in the tank they are occupying. The food you give them will depend on their size and activity level within their aquarium. 

Overfeeding and Underfeeding

Like all creatures, crayfish can suffer from overfeeding or underfeeding. Too much food can lead to your crayfish getting fat and lazy, affecting their mobility and feeding habits. However, underfeeding them will not give them enough nutrition, leading to sickness.

Poor health also commonly results from an overfed crayfish’s poor eating habits and water quality issues. So regularly feed your crayfish fresh vegetables and fruit – the best way to provide them with the nutrients they need without having them overweight or sick.

Keep an eye on your crayfish’s health, and if you notice any significant changes, please take them to a veterinarian immediately!

How to Make Sure That Your Crayfish Are Getting Enough Water and Nutrition

One way to ensure your crayfish get the water and nutrition they need is to provide them with a swimming area. This will help them meet their liquid needs while also keeping them active. 

Additionally, you can feed them live or frozen food. However, before you do so, it’s essential to do your research to ensure that the food you’re feeding your crayfish is of good quality and suitable for their dietary needs. You can do this by consulting a veterinarian or other professionals in crayfish care.