Top Fish-Feeding Mistakes

March_2013_1

Are you sure you’re feeding your fish correctly? Whether you’re a new aquarist learning the ropes or an experienced one in need of a reminder, read on for a few top fish-feeding mistakes.

  1. Overfeeding
    The number one mistake made by fish owners is overfeeding. Since fish will never turn down food, they always seem hungry, but this doesn’t mean they need feeding. Start by feeding your fish once a day. Don’t worry. Feeding them once a day won’t starve your fish.
  2. Feeding the tank rather than the fish
    Many think a bigger tank means more food, but that isn’t the case. Only feed your fish the amount they can consume within three to five minutes. Once they let food float to the bottom, it’s time to stop. Remember, any food that isn’t eaten decomposes and this decay leads to cloudy water, algae growth and high ammonia levels.
  3. Not having a feeding schedule
    Is more than one person caring for the aquarium? If so, everyone should be aware of the feeding schedule to avoid accidental overfeeding.
  4. Not learning the dietary requirements of your fish
    A diverse community of fish make for a beautiful aquarium, but to maintain that diversity, you should learn the feeding requirements of each fish species. Some fish may need or prefer flakes, while others will need pellets. It’s important you know which is best for proper nutrition.
  5. Not choosing high-quality food
    It’s also important to provide high-quality fish food. Food that is low in quality, stale or inappropriate for that species may cause harm or add to the food waste in your tank.
  6. Not testing the water regularly
    Testing the water is a vital factor that can also affect feeding. How? As we mentioned earlier, uneaten food waste degrades water quality. If the ammonia and nitrate levels are off, you can adjust feeding or withhold food for a few days until those levels stabilize. You won’t know it’s needed though unless you test.