Nutrition for Your Aquarium Fish
One of the most basic needs for your fish is healthy fish food. Just like human beings, fish need certain nutrients to grow and to thrive. If they don’t eat well, they are much more likely to suffer from stress or to become ill. When one fish becomes ill, the disease often spreads and affects other members of the tank. Fish need to have a well-balanced diet with a lot of variety, which means you need to offer them various kinds of fish food. Fortunately, there are a lot of different choices available for your aquarium fish.
Basic Food Needs.
All aquarium fish have basic food needs which include protein, lipids (fats), carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. However, there can be some variation as to the amount of these needs depending on the kind of fish. For example, carnivorous fish will require high-protein diets while herbivorous fish will need more vegetables. Generally speaking, your fish need about 3% of their body weight once or twice a day. However, because the fish to do not require large amounts of food, It is quite important to feed them the right foods so that they will receive all the nutrients they need.
Fish Food Types
Flake food is by far the most popular and easiest to find of fish feed. Unfortunately, processed foods like these, as well as pellets and granules, are not high in nutrition. They lose much of their nutrients in processing. They should not be the basis of the diet of your aquarium fish. You can keep your fish healthier by giving them a steady diet of live, freeze-dried and/or frozen foods along with some of the processed foods. Some of the most popular of the live foods which can also be found frozen or freeze-dried are bloodworms, white worms, daphnia and brine shrimp. If flake foods are still your primary choice, choose ones that have been formulated for the particular kind of fish that you have or select one that has been enriched with vitamins or minerals. After collecting several different kinds of fish food, you can try a schedule of different types of food over the course of several days.
There are several different recommendations for the amount of food to give your fish. However, a good rule of thumb is to feed them as much as they can eat in about a minute or two. Overfeeding your fish can cause several problems. For example, they can become obese. Also, uneaten fish food will fall to the bottom of the tank and create a lot of organic waste. This can result in a couple of problems. One result could be high levels of ammonia which could cause ammonia poisoning. Another problem that could result is the growth of algae in your tank. Some algae is natural and normal and means your water is healthy. Also fish often like to nibble on it, but too much algae will make your fish tank unsightly and could turn your water green. So, if you limit the amount of fish food you give your fish, they will be less likely to overindulge and this will also result in less waste build-up in your substrate.
Although limiting the amount of food you feed your fish will help to keep down the build-up of waste, you will need a little help to keep your water clear, clean and healthy. Beneficial bacteria does that in nature and eventually will find their way into your tank. There are also several products available which you can add to your aquarium to boost the levels of bacteria. The bacteria do the work of breaking down organic waste into safer by products creating a healthy ecosystem in your fish tank.