Aquarium Fish Diet
No matter what type of fish you have, whether it’s an anemone, coral or crustacean, they will fall into one of three types of feeder.
Carnivores. These types of feeders eat other fish. They are all either predators or scavengers. Predators like to hunt for their food, so they may be uninterested in what you’re feeding them, if they want to hunt instead. Once a predator has eaten, it may not feel the urge to eat again for a few days. Scavengers are more opportunistic, and usually prefer to eat the leftovers left by predators.
Herbivores. These types of feeders eat many marine plants and algae. To find their food, they spend their days moving around and grazing, picking up food whenever they can find it.
Omnivores. These types of fish are a mixture of the two above. They like to eat a combination of corals, crustaceans, invertebrates and also plants and algae.
It’s important to remember that when you put food in your tank, many of your fish will ignore it for a while first. Because they aren’t “fed” when they are in the ocean, they just aren’t accustomed to being served food. Some of your fish will eventually learn that you are giving them food, but many others won’t.
Herbivores and omnivores tend to adapt to being tank-fed quicker than other types of feeders. However, some breeds, Angels comes to mind, are used to finding their food on the ocean floor rather than free floating, so it will take a little long for them to understand.
How often should you feed your fish?
It’s a good idea to stick to feeding your fish just once a day, and to feed them no more than they can eat in one minute. To some people this may seem like not enough, but if your fish aren’t hurrying to eat up the food within a minute, they simply aren’t hungry enough to need feeding.
A balanced diet for your aquarium fish is essential to their survival. Most of the commercially available dry fish foods are almost always unbalanced. In many cases, the vitamin content will gradually decline at room temperature and since majority of the dry food for tropical fish commonly used will only keep for about three months, it is always advisable to buy fish-feeds in many small packs rather than in one large pack.
The feed could preferably be kept absolutely dry in a refrigerator. However, all fish appreciate a change of diet and will thank you for your consideration with more interesting behaviour, better colours, and greater readiness to breed and better general well-being. This change of diet should be supplemented with live food; majority of which now come in irradiated freeze-dried forms to make sure that they are disease free.
I will mention a few that could be found handy in some major aquarium shops and I will group them into two. And they are flake foods and freeze-dried foods
Most popular and highly recommended brands are Aquarian®, Tetra®, and Wardley®. They are varying in cost and quality. Wardley is the least expensive among the three. However, the Aquarian and Tetra are richer in specialty flakes compare to Wardley.
You will also find freeze-dried foods available in aquarium stores. They are favourite foods for aquarium fish. They have single animal-ingredient like mosquito larvae, blood worms and Tubifex worm each. Aquarist should note that freeze-foods are not in themselves complete diet but they can be combined to flake food or other type of freeze-dried foods. We shall discuss more about Tubifex as a popular freeze-dried food.
TUBIFEX - This is a traditional favourite food relished by most fishes. They are small red worms that live at the bottom of streams and rivers particularly where large amounts of organic matter are present. Therefore, it is difficult for the aquarist to collect them life from their habitat. It is therefore preferable to buy Tubifex from pet shops where they are already clean, freeze-dried and concentrated into cube forms.
From personal experience, Tubifex tubes could probably be the most exciting feed to use for fishes. The cube can be stuck to the front inside wall of the aquarium. The fishes in the tank will immediately come forward and bit off pieces of worms excitedly until satisfied.
You need not bother to remove the rest of the worms since they seldom pollute and, in most cases, fishes return to the feed for further fill.