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kiiarah

Thoughts On Feeding Regimen?

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Hi again everyone! So I have just been sitting here browsing through all the great info on these forums, and thinking to myself "what is there about goldfish-keeping that I could stand to know more about." It occurred to me that I have only recently started feeding a more varied diet than fish flakes, and I am sure there is a wealth of knowledge out there I would do well to learn from. So I have a few questions for you all! :) First, this is my current feeding regimen. I feed them 2-3 meals of primarily TetraFin flake food. I give them dried shrimp 2-3 times per week and de-shelled thawed peas 2 times per week for digestive health. The other days they just have their flake food. I watch them as I feed them and give them flakes little by little, so as not to pollute the water by overfeeding. I tried soaking the flakes but found that they chomp at the flake and promptly spit it back out in tiny pieces. After doing this they don't try to eat it again, so it just gunks up the water. :( I will be looking around for a good pellet food next time I go out. So my questions are:

1) Is TetraFin a good brand of fish food? I didn't see any suspicious ingredients like ash in it, but I distrust mass produced foods as a rule. What are your thoughts on this one?

2) What, if anything, would be a good supplemental food to add to the peas and shrimp? Is fruit alright? I would like to give them some variety every day but don't want to give any single treat too often. (a proposed treat schedule would be awesome!)

3)I have read that young fish should be fed more often for good growth, but has anyone researched whether it is healthy for fish to grow so large? Some of them have such big bellies they can hardly swim. At first I just appreciated how they look without thinking about it too much, but is it possible that their body shape causes them discomfort? It seems like fish should be able to exercise by racing through the water, like they do as fry, but all the full-grown goldies are so large they can only waddle around. Is there a such thing as goldfish obesity, and do I risk them developing health problems from frequent feedings? I don't know whether fish can develop cardiac problems or other health issues like people from eating all the time. I would love for my little ones to get huge and full bodied, but only if it is in their best interest and not just to plump them up for looks. Where exactly is the line drawn and is a fat fish a healthy fish or an unhealthy fish? :unsure:

4)Are there any foods that are toxic to goldies? I know chocolate can kill dogs, is there anything like this to be aware of with fish? What are some common and easy to eat safe foods and which ones should I never feed?

5)Any other things I should know? :)

Thanks everyone, you guys are the best! Felix and Apollo say thank you as well, and request that I let you all know how well they are getting along after their brief separation. :D

Edited by kiiarah

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There is a lot of great info in the food section of the board. I actually made my first test batch of gel food yesterday and my fish loved it.

I feed twice a day. Fast one day a week. I feed my little ones more often.

My basic foods are-

Omega One pellets

Hikari Oranda Gold pellets

ProGold pellets

New Life Spectrum pellets

Frozen bloodworms

Shelled peas

I also am trying various fruits and veggies. Mine do not like cucumber, but a lot of people here have said their fish love it. Spinach has been a hit.

They can eat all kinds of fruits and veggies. I don't do fruit all that often because people here have talked about the sugar content. I keep wanting to try banana, but always forget.

I think Fang posted about feeding egg whites. I put tuna in my gel food. I have read about people using other fish and shrimp. Just watch the sodium.

Some fish have a body shape that is going to make them look obese when they aren't. I will leave it to others to address that issue of your post, because there are a lot of fish around here that are a prisoner to their body shape.

I don't feed flakes. One reason is that I don't want to risk floatiness. There are a few people that do feed flakes, but it is a topic I will not debate.

I bet there is info on the board that lists foods to stay away from. But do look at the food section. I have gotten some great ideas. : )

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Gah! Guess its too early in the am for me to work my phone. Sigh.

I always soak the pellets before feeding.

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Gah! Guess its too early in the am for me to work my phone. Sigh.

I always soak the pellets before feeding.

Thanks so much for the suggestions Grace! I want to try banana, just to see if they like it, but they had peas tonight so I guess I will just have to wait. :P I am hoping to throw together some gel food soon, it sounds like such a nice way to feed them healthy food! I will probably start by feeding gel food 3 days a week and soaked pellets four days a week, since I worry that what I choose to mix together might not be enough nutritionally. The sugar is a good thing to keep in mind as well, so that is definitely noted. :) Do you happen to know anything about Tetra as a brand? I really cannot afford any specialty fish diet right now, but I can the best readily available option. At least just for the time being. I will have to pick up some bloodworms, I hear they love them!

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I have both tropicals and goldfish. I use the TetraMin tablets as one of the foods for the catfish in my trop tank. I used to use Tetra flakes in the trop, but I don't have any now and I can't remember why and I can't list the ingredients.

The main thing is to look at the ingredients for the food you plan to use. For example, the Omega One pellets list as the first three ingredients -whole salmon, whole herring and whole shrimp. Omega One isn't very expensive.

The frozen bloodworms are a huge hit with both the goldies and tropicals!

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I've heard of mixing your food into the gel food! Just a suggestion. :)

I feed Omega One, it was inexpensive (generally the same as buying regular goldie food) and I've had it for QUITE a while and STILL have half a bottle left. :D

As Grace said, anything with Fish-related ingredients listed first is good for them, especially if it sinks. :)

If you try banana be careful with the way you "serve" it. Too small it'll turn the tank to milk water. Too big the goldies won't touch it.. (Not that they touched it anyway, picky little buggers. :rolleyes: )

Mine liked little pieces of chopped apple, especially if it had a little lemon/lime juice squirted on it. I've heard they like oranges, but they never touched the ones I gave them, just tore it apart and made a mess.

I can't get my fish to eat any veggies, other than peas, either. I've tried lettuce, carrots, cucumber, spinach. Everything! :thud

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I will remember that about the banana.

I also nuke my spinach for a few seconds to make it softer.

My Comet does like lemon. I can't remember who posted the picture of their fish eating a slice, so I tried it. I stick it in a veggie clip and she appears to have a good time with it. : )

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I'll try the spinach again, when we get some. I don't think they'll touch lettuce, though.

I think I'm going to go try giving them a piece of lemon, too. I'm sure we have some in the fridge.. Any suggestion on how to "serve" it?

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I either put a slice in the veggie clip with a cut in the middle or I just put half of a slice in the clip.

She seems to have more fun figuring out the whole slice. Its like a game.

I don't know how big your fish are, Bear is big so she doesn't have a problem with a big slice. I haven't tried it with my smaller goldies.

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Most of the fish in the tank I intend on giving them lemon in are about 2'', on average. I have three smaller ones that can't be any bigger than an inch, though.

We'll see what happens. :) Thanks :heart

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Mine love, love, love a slice of fresh peach! But that is only a very special treat because of the sugar.

At the moment, I am feeding twice a day. A gel food heavy on veggies in the AM, and in the evening one of the following (alternating): saki hikari pellets, frozen bloodworms, brine shrimp, or krill. They also have fresh anacharis in teh tank to munch on, thought not all do. I do add fish vitamin drops (Boyd Vitachem Freshwater Vitamin drops) to my gel food when I make it, though I have no idea how effective they are or not, I prefer that as they are fish-specific. A lot of members add one (of part of a) crushed Centrum (human vitamin) with no or low iron to their gel food instead of that.

Mine also do not like cucumber!

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The veggie clip is a great invention!

I feed orange slices once in awhile, and they LOVE it! I just attach a slice to the clip and they eat until all that's left is the white fibrous stuff and the peel. It's amazing, really. They eat it quickly! It is kind of messy, though.

Suzy and Olivia also love zucchini, peas, banana, and strawberry. I don't give them the banana and strawberry much, but they nom nom them down, too. I haven't tried cukes yet, but I will soon.

Their staple food is Omega One sinking pellets. My fish are classroom pets, and the kids, teachers, and parents are amazed by the variety of foods I feed my darling orandas. It is surprising to see what they'll eat!

Good luck and have fun!

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About feeding them too much- when people try to feed their fish tons of food so that they'll grow faster it may shorten their lifespan.

This was an excellent post by Daryl I found regarding the topic- it was written in response to a question about protein in food for fry, but it may answer some of your questions:

Yes.... and no. You CAN "pump" fish by feeding them extraordinarily large amounts of high protien food from day one - but all fry do much better if given a good steady diet of protien. Algae is great for nibbling - but a good supply of live brine shrimp/daphnia/ etc. fed many times a day is still best for growing fry well.

Some breeders do grow their fish extremely fast. This is accomplished by having extraordinarily good water conditions, plenty of good food, lack of stessors and great genetics. It is worth money to a breeder to grow a fish to saleable size as quickly as possible - so they do.

It IS possible to "pump" a fish so hard and fast that some of them do seem to have life long problems. There are a few breeders/importers that supply fish that appear to have had this done - many, many very GOOD fish keepers have all experienced bad luck with fish bought from specific breeders that sell young/large fish - it is a common discussion topic at meetings - and all the fish seem to have traits in common. Whether it is a result of certain genetic makeup, "pumping" or something else, it is difficult to determine - for all the parameters are not known. But it is common enough that I would be leary of fish that are VERY large, yet young.

I would be cautious of purchasing large fish that are purported to being very young. Some of these are what I call "One-show fish". They can be groomed and gorgeous for one show, but quickly go downhill in the next weeks. But I would NOT be worried about over feeding your own fish with "too much protien"..... most likely you would be unable to do it..... With tremendous amounts of protien (and most foods) you also get trememdous amounts of waste. The amounts of water that would need to be changed, DAILY, in an indoor tank setup, make it virtually impossible to feed that way. You would poison the fish with the water parameters before the food had a chance to make a difference.

I tried "pumping" a set of fish once - 4 matched babies from a single spawning. The two that were "pumped" outgrew their spawn mates by amazing amounts. By the time they were 8 months old, they were an easy 3-5 inches.... while the others were only 2ish. They also died within a day of contacting an infection - making me question where their immunity levels were. This was in no way/shape or form a good scientific experiment - but it does make me question the whole system of "pumping" fish even more. Pumping has been reported and questioned for years and years - from many, MANY fish keepers.

By all means - feed those fry well. Protien in the form of live brine shrimp and other things is a GREAT meal - done every 2-3 hours all day long - is one of the best ways to raise healthy babies. Feed the bigger fish well, but less. Less food will keep your fish healthy, active, and swimming level and steady. :)

Anyway, I feed my fish once a day, just a pinch of food (either pellets or flakes and occassionally bloodworms) and they grow fine. Sometimes I'll give them some veggies throughout the day as a treat. I think if they are growing, they are being fed enough. Trying to accelerate their growth is not a good idea.

Edited by Calluna

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Thanks so much for all the input. So many great things to try! I think they will just love the cucumber and lettuce, such piggies. They love having something to nibble at throughout the day. Now to find a clip that fits their tank. :D

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The veggie clip is a great invention!

I feed orange slices once in awhile, and they LOVE it! I just attach a slice to the clip and they eat until all that's left is the white fibrous stuff and the peel. It's amazing, really. They eat it quickly! It is kind of messy, though.

Suzy and Olivia also love zucchini, peas, banana, and strawberry. I don't give them the banana and strawberry much, but they nom nom them down, too. I haven't tried cukes yet, but I will soon.

Their staple food is Omega One sinking pellets. My fish are classroom pets, and the kids, teachers, and parents are amazed by the variety of foods I feed my darling orandas. It is surprising to see what they'll eat!

Good luck and have fun!

I just had to mention how cool I think it is that you have a classroom tank and know how to care for your fish! My sons are in a home-based headstart program and we once went to a playgroup at the preschool. Their poor common had a 10 gallon with a single decoration, no plants, and some gravel. The water was literally green and it was hard to even tell if there was a fish in it. I think it is so horrible when people buy fish as decor. :( It is great though to know that not all teachers take their classroom pets for granted! :#1

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Most of the fish in the tank I intend on giving them lemon in are about 2'', on average. I have three smaller ones that can't be any bigger than an inch, though.

We'll see what happens. :) Thanks :heart

Did you get to try offering them the lemon? That sounds like it could have very interesting results. Can goldfish make a sour face? :teehee

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:rofl! I'm not sure if they can make a sour face, but I gave them the lemon slice and they seemed to like it. I didn't have a veggie clip on hand (I make mine out of suction cups with hooks and plastic chip-bag clips, but ran out of suction cups) so I just cut the lemon so it was a line, which curled back up, and let it be. They pecked at it quite a bit and now have pushed it to the bottom of the tank. :lol

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I tried lettuce and he wouldn't touch it.. but then I tried kale and he LOVED IT :) try it (in tiny little pieces :) -

Edited by Jadafish

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I tried lettuce and he wouldn't touch it.. but then I tried kale and he LOVED IT :) try it (in tiny little pieces :) -

They seemed not to be able to figure out where to nip at the lettuce to get any off of the leaf, but they went crazy over thawed spinach bits! I need to stop finding so many fun treats to give em, they are gonna be such chubby babies. :P

Edited by kiiarah

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