Are you a proud owner of a new Saltwater fish? Then you’ve come to the right place! New hobbyists frequently ask how much and how often they should feed. Overfeeding causes a build up of toxins (such as ammonia and nitrites) in the tank while the food itself clogs the filter. Overeating causes weight gain and even death in some fish! Like most wild animals, fish are opportunistic feeders. When marine food appears in the tank, they eat as much as possible because they don’t know when their next meal is coming. A good rule of thumb is to feed your fish as much as they can consume in three minutes twice a day. The number and size of fish in your tank will determine the amount of food you should feed them.

So what should you feed your saltwater fish?

First, let’s look at different ingredients. One of the ingredients your likely to see is wheat germ meal. Wheat germ has bran and germs of the wheat berry which is highly nutritious and digests easily. Another common ingredient is whole fish or fish meal which is used for carnivorous fish. This is a natural source of nutrition and is a rich source of protein and Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids. Biotin is a B-complex vitamin and is often used in fish foods because it helps bolster a fish’s metabolism. Red, Brown, and Green Algae and Seaweed are rich in natural vitamins, perfect for fish such as tangs and angelfish. Additionally, garlic is becoming a very popular ingredient. Garlic has been shown to repel ich and other parasites in fish. It is an antibacterial and anti-fungal supplement. It also helps to stimulate the appetite of fish.

What type of food should you feed?

Now that you know some common ingredients, you’ll need to learn the types of foods available.  Flake food is the most common and is great because it’s easy to use, easy to store, and readily available. Make sure though that you read the ingredients as  not all flake foods are created equal!

Pellets are great for the same reasons as flake food, but they also sink. This is great for fish that do not normally come to the top of the tank for food.

Frozen foods are great, as they are flash frozen to keep all the nutritional properties. They come in a wide variety of types; mysis shrimp, cyclops, formulas 1 & 2, etc. There are also foods for specific animals such as angelfish diet, and trigger formula. Frozen food must stay frozen though, until you are ready to use it. To defrost the food and reduce the loss of nutrition, put some in a cup and let it defrost slowly in the fridge.

Algae and Seaweed come in sheets that tear easily and attach to the aquarium using a feeder clip.

Krill is a type of shrimp that is great for larger marine fish, as it has lots of vitamins and helps with coloration of the fish.

Live Snails are necessary in a puffer’s diet. If a puffer’s beak is not filed or exercised with hard foods, it will keep growing and eventually keep them from being able to eat. Make sure to supplement your puffer’s diet with snails and other hard foods.

Vitamin Supplements are perfect for adding nutrition to almost any type of food. Simply squirt it on to the food, let it sit for a few minutes, then feed like normal.

In Conclusion:

Your local store should feed at least 3 types of food to their fish everyday. They know the more types of food they feed, they healthier and happier the fish is.  Choosing the right foods and feeding the appropriate amounts are very important for the health and well-being of your fish. What types of fish are in your tank? Let us know in the comments!

About The Author Giselle Rodriguez

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