A common problem with keeping the fancy Goldfish is bloat or swim bladder disorders often confused with dropsy. The problem is caused by incorrect diet and feeding. The feeding problem is that most people feed their fancy goldfish on flake food which floats, so that when the fish feeds it gulps in large quantities of air. This can collect in the gut and swim bladder causing the fish to balloon and swim on its side or even lay at the surface upside down unable to swim properly.

Prevention is far better than cure which is hit and miss for this problem and not easy to correct.

Fancy Goldfish like Lion heads and Moors have been bred for their shape not practicality and now bare no resemblance to the Carp they once were.

Carp are basically bottom feeders so the answer is simple give them a sinking food so they can feed from the bottom and then do not gulp air into their system. Feeding Tetrafin Gold Japan is an excellent food that is composed of all the correct food items along with minerals and vitamins to promote healthy growth.

  • High quality vegetable ingredients
  • Sinking sticks that make it easier for fancy goldfish to feed
  • Rich in high quality essential fatty acids and hydrolysed proteins, for healthy growth and condition
  • Rich in carotenoids to promote excellent natural colouration
  • Contains Active Formula for increased resistance to disease

 ValueAquatics offer Tetrafin Gold Japan in two sizes 55g and 145g



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.



Feeding Tropical Fish part 1

Feeding the fish is usually a case of I got this from the Aquatic shop when I first got my fish so I have used it ever since attitude. How would you like to be fed the same meal every day for the rest of your life?

The problem is some foods are better than others, some have more protein in them and others more fibre or vegetable matter, so you really need to know what your fish’s requirements are, and it is no good feeding a Piranha on a lettuce leaf and a guppy on a steak.

Most people have a mixed community aquarium that is tropical fish from different parts of the world of a similar size and hopefully temperament and then hope they get on and all eat the same food.

It is not that easy, most community fish will eat most commercially prepared food but variety is what is needed and the different dried foods available is mind boggling and they all make similar claims. I usually have at least three or four foods feeding and rotate them giving the fish a varied diet and once a week they get live Daphnia or Bloodworm. If that is not available then I feed frozen once or twice a week.

Only feed once a day around the same time if possible and remember those that live on the bottom of the aquarium. So called scavengers are usually only thought of as vacuum cleaners of the aquarium, wrong they have food requirements the same as the rest of the fish so don’t forget them.

What to feed is the question my advice is do not stick to any one make totally change the food so that next time you have to buy some try a different brand. People say my fish won’t eat that they like so and so it’s only that they have got so used to one food anything different is alien to them. But just let them go hungry and after a day or two they will eat it with relish. A few days without food will not hurt them in fact it will do them some good by getting rid of gut toxins. I only feed mine 6 days a week and not on Sunday.

So what foods? ValueAquatics can offer you quiet a large and varied range of foods for Guppies and Cichlids to Catfish and Algae Eaters.

Just a few that I would recommend for a standard community of fish would be a firm favourite Tetramin Flake food this is an old well tried and tested food that has been around as long as I can remember and is the worlds top selling tropical fish flake food, so they must be doing something right. I use this as a staple and work round it. It comes in various sizes from 20gram to a 2020g Bucket for anyone with a fish house or even if a club or few friends get together.

Another is Aquarian Tropical Fish Food which I find excellent they come in 25g to 200g sizes.

I like to feed a colour food once a week this does help keep the fish’s colours bright again Tetra have Tetra Ruby in 100ml size and  the Nishi people better known for their Koi and Goldfish foods have an excellent colour food for Tropical fish called Nishi-Aquaria Colour Booster 150gram.

As a treat once a week I give my fish some freeze dried food tubifex, bloodworm or brine shrimp. These come lose in small square blocks or as a tablet. I like the Block or tablet ones as a personal preference as you can take a tablet or block and press it onto the glass and have fun watching the fish eating it. They really do seem to enjoy this type of feeding.

Interpet does Brine shrimp 7gram and tubifex 5gram in pots of small blocks. You simply take off a small amount and press it against the glass halfway down so that everyone gets a bit.