Feeding Tropical Fish part 2

The most forgotten about fish are the bottom dwellers the catfish, loaches these often only get the crumbs that are left over by the other fish and people say we can’t keep catfish they tend to die after a while. They simply starve to death.

The answer is to feed a sinking food with the other fish food so that when the main fish are feeding the bottom fish get the sinking food.

These foods come as pellets, granules or tablets/wafers. If you feed the pellets or granules it is easy to just feed enough for the number of bottom dwellers that you have basically a pinch or so. With the wafers or tablets you can either break them in half or even quarters and feed of just feed a whole one and net out any uneaten food after 3 minutes.

Hikari do a catfish sinking wafer that has been specially formulated for catfish and loaches. They come in 25g and 125g packets Corydoras and loaches love these.

King British also does an excellent Catfish pellet food in a 200g tub which is also an excellent buy.

The so called algae eaters, Plecs, Hong Kong Plecs, Chinese algae eater, Flying Fox  etc., are not total vegetarians as most people think, it is just that plants including algae is the biggest part of their diet but also includes things like small shrimps, worms, snails etc. So again a more balanced diet is required than just leaving them to survive on whatever algae happens to grow in the aquarium.

King British does a 100g tub of Algae wafers which has all the different foods that these fish require. They also do a food specifically for the Plecostomus that come is a 60g tub Plec food tablets.

Tetra do Plecowafers specially formulated for Plecostomus in 42g and 85grams. They also do Plecomin in tablets form as a 120 tablet tub.

All of these are suitable for the so called algae eaters and should be fed as part of the feeding regime for your Aquarium.

It is a good idea to give the bottom feeders some live food like Blood worms (mosquito larvae) or Tubifex if you cannot get live then frozen is a good alternative. To get the food down to the bottom feeders use a length of 1” plastic tube or the large tube off the gravel cleaner. Simply lower the tube into the aquarium so that one end is on the bottom and the other end either at the surface or just above then drop in the appropriate amount of live food in until it drops to the bottom. Now feed the rest of your fish as normal and slowly take the tube out.

The catfish etc. will be getting some livefood and the rest of the fish some flake etc.

If you use frozen then thaw some out first before feeding it via the tube.

How much and how often to feed your fish. Always remember a hungry fish is a healthy fish. DO NOT OVERFEED.

The instructions on the fish food usually say feed twice or three times a day, basically that is to get you to use more food.

A standard 30” Aquarium of community fish will require enough food that it is all eaten in one minute (enough to cover the head of a drawing pin) if there is any left simply reduce it, and I suggest feeding once a day at about the same time. If you want to feed twice a day use the same quantity of food only feeding half the amount twice a day. Only feed the fish 6 days a week and allow them to go hungry for one day a week this gives their digestive systems time to detoxify and rest.