The majority of tadpoles are herbivores and should be fed plants, such as spinach or other leafy greens, which seem to be their favorites. These should be chopped up into tiny pieces and frozen to make them easier for the tadpole to eat.
Some people also recommend boiling the leaves first, but this destroys most of their nutrients. Fish food flakes and algae tablets can also be added to the water occasionally to provide the tadpoles with extra nutrition. In addition, tadpoles also require calcium, which is usually added to the water in the form of liquid calcium drops.
Tadpoles typically require a lot of food and may start eating one another if they become too hungry. Depending on the species, the tadpoles may need to be fed several times a day. In addition to lots of food, tadpoles also require incredibly clean water. This makes it important not to overfeed them, as this quickly dirties the water.
As they begin their metamorphosis into frogs and start growing larger, many tadpoles begin eating insects, such as crickets or mealworms. As their legs develop, they also require a partially submerged rock or other perch to allow them to climb out of the water. Depending on the species, it can take the tadpoles as little as six weeks or as long as eight months to fully mature.