If you’re just getting familiar with your new aquarium fish, it is essential to learn how to feed it properly to avoid health issues and serious consequences. Even though feeding a fish sounds quite simple, there are a few rules you must follow to ensure your pet is happy and healthy.
For starters, you need to decide what type of food is suitable for your fish. This largely depends on the size and the species of the fish itself. It is best to use dry foods that are suitable for the specific breed of your fish and if you don’t feel like doing the research, just head over to a pet store and ask the storekeeper to help you out.
The most important thing you need to know about your fish is whether they are herbivores, carnivores or omnivores. If you own an exotic type of fish, they might require special kind of food, but most other species will be happy with the basic, store-bought fish foods. Some types of fish foods float on the surface of the water, while others sink to the bottom of the aquarium.
You”ll have to choose a specific food type depending on whether your fish is a surface feeder or the kind that spends most of its time in the deepest part of the aquarium. Again, the pet storekeeper should gladly help you out with this.
How much and how often should you feed an aquarium fish?
Once you’ve got the right kind of food, you need to learn about the quantity and frequency of feeding your fish. Always feed the fish in tiny portions, as too much food will give them digestive problems, while frequent overfeeding can even kill them. Therefore, pour the food into the aquarium in smaller portions and sprinkle it evenly across the aquarium so that each fish gets some.
If you have multiple fishes in the aquarium, some of them might be larger and faster than others, and they will catch more food, leaving other fish hungry for the rest of the day. That’s why you must make sure to sprinkle the food evenly. If you accidentally pour too much food into the aquarium, always scoop it out with a net.
While this might sound like a good idea, never pour extra food for fish to eat it later. They will most likely take advantage of the opportunity and eat everything right away, which can have severe consequences on their health.
It is also vital for you to know when your fish is overfed so that you can learn how much food is actually too much for them. If you see a trail of poop hanging from the back of the fish, this is a sign that their digestive system might be blocked due to the large intake of food. If this does happen, reduce the amount of food you are giving to the fish.
The aquarium water can also tell you if you’re overfeeding the fish or not. If the water gets dirty too soon that you have to change it several times a week, it means you are giving the fish too much food to eat. The aquarium water should be replaced once a week and, if there is a need for frequent cleaning, it might indicate overfeeding.
It is okay to feed the fish once or twice a day, but never more than that. Always keep the portions small and remember that overfeeding can kill them. Another important detail you should be aware of is the fact that pellet fish foods need to be soaked before pouring into the aquarium. If you’re using pellet food to feed the fish, always soak it in water for ten minutes before sprinkling it into the aquarium. That is because these types of food tend to absorb water and expand, which unquestionably isn’t good for the fish.
How to feed an aquarium fish at home, while on vacations?
If you’re leaving for a trip or a vacation, your fish will have to stay home alone. The biggest concern in this situation is how to keep your fish fed while you’re not around. Interestingly, adult fish can survive longer than a week with no food whatsoever and without any significant health consequences. However, if you’re traveling for longer than two weeks, you will have to come up with an alternative solution.
The first option you have is to invest in an automatic fish feeder. In this case, you need to make sure the feeder has enough food supply for the period of time you will be unavailable. Also, you need to set the timer to release tiny portions of food into the aquarium once a day. Even though this may sound complicated, using automatic fish feeders is quite easy. Each device comes with specific instructions and, if you’re still not confident about it, you can always take an expert’s opinion on the same.
The other option you have is to ask a friend, family member or a neighbour to visit the fish and feed them occasionally. However, keep in mind that this isn’t always the wisest solution, especially if you’re letting someone into your home while you’re not around. If you decide to trust someone with your fish, you must educate them about the dangers of overfeeding and teach them how to get the job done correctly. If you frequently travel, investing on an automatic feeder is undoubtedly a better option, since you can entirely rely on it.
Overall, feeding aquarium fishes really aren’t that difficult, as long as you pay attention to the amount and the type of food you are feeding. Always ask the pet storekeeper for advice about the food requirements and behaviours of the specific breed of your fish and do some research to find out if your fish requires any special food!