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Things You Can And Can't Feed Your Fish

Seb Spiers

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When I was a wee lad we used to go and feed the fish in the pond with bread crumbs. What I'm wondering is, of normal house hold foods what could I feed my fish? Also what are the definate no-nos? :)
 

Honeythorn

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Many people feed things like lettuce, cucumber, peas, courgette ect. If you have any earthworms from an untainted source like a compost bin, then you can chop and feed those to bigger fish, and the tiny baby worms can also be fed to smaller fish. Mine go mad for them. I wouldn't feed bread, it swells up when wet and could easily bloat them.
 

LauraFrog

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You probably know instinctively that eating too much packaged food is bad for you. Well fresh food is good for your fish too. Fish food makes up about 50% of my fish's diets because it contains the vitamins and minerals they need and is a good balanced diet. I store it in the freezer to keep it fresh.
Depending on what fish you have they will appreciate fresh vegetables and also meats. Some fish will appreciate a small amount of cooked egg white - tiny slivers cut off with the knife. Do not use the yolk unless feeding tiny fry because it will disintegrate into particles adult fish cannot eat and then rot the water.
Meat can be fed as well. A small shellfish such as might be found in marinara mix can be dropped in and left until the fish eat all of it. Tiny slivers of raw beef, chicken, lamb or fish are also suitable. My fish won't eat pork for some reason. Cooked prawns work well too, halve them and then slice into little half circles and drop those in. Remove any uneaten egg, meat or fish after about three or four hours. After this time the fish usually lose interest and it stays there until it rots. It can be left longer if you have shrimp in the tank; they will love you for leaving it there.

Vegetables are one of the best things to feed fish. Leafy greens are appreciated by anything herbivorous; most livebearers, particularly platies, enjoy them. So do brsitlenose catfish, corys, and most other fish will nibble them. Scalded lettuce leaves work well - pour boiling water over a lettuce leaf, let it sit until it cools, drop it in the tank. Do not use the outer leaves and wash the leaf first. Celery works if shredded or the leaves are used. Do not use cabbage, brussels sprouts or anything with a strong smell such as onion, leek or shallot. Garlic can be used as a fish attractant but should be used sparingly and saved for medication. If using large vegies such as carrot, pumpkin or potato shred them first as fish will not attack hard objects that don't fit in their mouths.

I wouldn't use bread, it falls apart and rots the water. In ponds it works better with inverts etc. to clean it up.
 

three-fingers

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Tiny slivers of raw beef, chicken, lamb or fish are also suitable.
These should generally be avoided, every now and then it's OK, but muscle material from mammals and birds contains too much unsaturated fat for fish to handle, as fish use saturated fats in their bodies (fish oil). That's why beef heart is fed to fish requiring lots of protein - a healthy heart should have no fat in it.

Having said that, I don't even think beef heart is a good idea. Most fish aren't great at processing terrestrial animal proteins, this post from Bignose is very informative. I'm not sure about egg.

I like to try my fish with different things, but before I do I ask myself "what are the chances of them eating something similar to this in nature?". If the answer is 'very slim', then they are unlikely to be adapted to processing it so the chances are it's not a fantastic food item.

I've fed my fish things like bannana, mealworms, crickets, various larvae and bugs from buckets of water in my garden, bit's of frozen lancefish, chopped mussel, tinned spinach, prawns, shelled peas, etc.
 
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Be very careful about obtaining worms, insects, and insect larve from outside. It's hard to tell what sort of chemicals and pesticides they may contain...that doesn't mean you can't do it, but it does mean you should be cautious.

There are various types of live foods you can cultivate yourself...from worms to wingless fruit flies.
 

BigC

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Culture your own

Fruitfly
Vinegar Eel
Microworm
Grindalworm
Whiteworm

to name but a few
Tubs left out in the back garden near trees and shrubbery will soon team with aquatic life such as daphnia, pods, various midge and fly larvae. The soil in your garden will contain earthworms which are excellent when purged and chopped.
the garden walls and stonework may have ant colonys paradeing along in summer. dip the heads os roses in a jar of aquarium water and feed the greenfly/Blackfly or
Whitefly

There are zillions of choices at your disposal.
Regards
BigC
 

three-fingers

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[quote name='DiscusLova' post='2111411' date='Aug 31 2008, 07:23 AM']If you look at the crude protien (percentile) of beef heart isn't that high compared to other frozen fish foods.[/quote]
Much cheaper though.

[quote name=''shelaghfishface']and its very high fat too,which isnt good for the fish[/quote]
Not the heart, it should basically just be muscle.
 

madpiano

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I wrote an article on the subject:

[URL="http://www.freewebs.com/jourdy288/alternativefoods.htm"]http://www.freewebs.com/jourdy288/alternativefoods.htm[/URL]

Enjoy! Oh, and if you try the tub method, be careful, use mosquito larvae as fish food ASAP

I have to fully agree to that - the paddling pool this year was filled and used on the one day summer made an appearance. It slowly turned green and aquired mosquito larvae. I caught them and gave them to my ex for his fish - until I was on late shift one week and forgot. The little ####s hatched within a couple of days and considering the pool is right under my bedroom window, I looked like I had the chickenpox !!!! :lol:
 
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